Knowledge management (KM) is an emerging set of processes, organizational structures, applications and technologies that aim to leverage the ability of the capable, responsible, autonomous individual to act quickly and effectively. Creating an effective knowledge architecture for the organization is the first step in leading users to the information they need. Key factors include creating, gathering, storing, accessing and making available the right information that will result in insight for the organizations' users. It differs from BPR, TQM and other trends in that it depends on exploiting technology infrastructures such as intranets and middleware such as e-mail. KM requires an integrated approach to identifying, managing and, most importantly, sharing the enterprise's information assets including databases, documents, policies and procedures, as well as undocumented expertise resident in individual workers.
Past experience is, many times, the best indicator of future performance. We use past experiences to help us run our businesses in many ways. We define best practices, predict marketing trends and set production schedules based on our existing knowledge of what came before. Using that same model for knowledge asset delivery would seem to be the next logical step. Using natural selection to manage information assets gives knowledge managers a systematic way to present users with the most valuable assets of the organization.
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