The idea here is quite simple and related to the assessment phase of KM introduction inside any organization, as far as I understand it.
Until today I've seen various tools used by most KM practitioners to try to reply to the very basic question in a KM assessment exercise: "where does this organization stand in terms of KMS"? The tools I've seen are:
- questionnaires (manual, to be distributed to a wide statistical sample)
- questionnaires (web-based such as the IBM-Inquira tool, with automatic stats displayed at the end, to be filled by the largest number of employees)
- knowledge expeditions
These tools are surely good, but I was looking for something as much "scientific" as possible; something that could help us define KS well as speed, mass and position (over time) define the motion of a body in classical mechanics.
Some indexes capable of replying to the question: "what makes a knowledge organization different from the others?".
These indicators (indexes) should tell me that the organization is actually sharing knowledge... or not.
Here you find my tentative list:
- number of co-authored documents (indicating good collaboration) compared with total documents produced, in particular if the authors come from different departments of the organization (indicating good cross-departmental collaboration);
- frequency of updates to documents present in the knowledge base of the organization (indicating good learning after, i.e. knowledge capture);
- frequency of accesses to the organization knowledge base (indicating good learning before);
- number of references (links) to other documents that are saved in the organization knowledge-base, per document (indicating again good level of collaboration in terms of learning from experience).
I know it may sound a bit simplistic as an approach (after all classical mechanics is quite simplistic compared to quantum theory), but I think the good thing about it is that studying the evolution of these indexes over time may lead to a very good picture of how the organization is evolving its KS activity over time, even if at a very rough first-order approximation.
Do you feel there's anything missing or that any of the assumptions may be improved?
Over to you.