As business professionals know, creating awaremess of a problem and its impact is a critical first step toward the resolution of the problem. That which doesn't get measured, doesn't get managed; measurement is a precursor to improvement. This is true for knowledge management capabilities of an organization. According several scholars, in today's knowledge-based economy majority of organizational assets are knowledge assets, intagnible capabilities that give businesses their competitive advantage and sustaining power.Knowledge Management Cabilibility Assessment (KMCA) is a methodology that offers a formal structure to the idea of measuring knowdege managment capabilities of an organization. KMCA consists of a KMCA framework, a KMCA questionnaire, and a KMCA process. The KMCA frameworkd categorizes institutional knowledge assets into four areas: Expertise, Lessons Learned, Knowledge Documents, and Data, and allow an organization to self assess how well it (or one of its business units) is able to manage the knowledge area and haing well-articulated specific goals for each level (in each area). The KMCA questionnaire consists of easy-to-answer questions that allow an organization to assess the fullfillment of specific goals within each area.The KMCA process starts with pilot testing the KMCA questionnaire in an organization that wants to administer the KMCA. The pupose of the pilot test is two-fold. The first is to ascertain that references to key knowledge assets and terminology used in the questionnaire is easily understood by the potential respondents. Some changes in the wording of questions and names of example knowledge artifacts (names of systems, softward, procedures, etc.) maybe occur as a result of the feedback received from the pilot test. The second is to understand that relative emphasis of the different knowledge areas to the organization. This may result in de-emphasizing (reducing the number of) questions under oe or more knowledge areas. Next, the KMCA process understands the demographics of the population of the organization and selects a probability sample for administering the questionnaire via a survey. After completing the survey administration, the data is aggregated and statisically analyzed. The output of the analysis is a report conveying the capability levels of the organization in each of the knowledge areas. The report also includes specific recommendations to the leadership of the organization regarding the steps that may be taken to improve KM capabilities in each knowledge area.The KMCA methodology has several advantages over competing methods. First the KMCA framework is robust; the six capability levels are intuitive and represent a progression from a lower to a higher level of capability. Moreover, the four knowledge areas are distinct and exhaustively cover almost all institutional knowledge. The six capability levels are articulated by way of specific goals within each area. Second the KMCA questionnaire is comprehensive; it includes over ninety questions covering the six capability levels and four knowledge areas. The questionnair has been validated through separate assessments of four large organizational groups. Rigorous and well-accepted statistical techniques such as confirmatory factor analysis and structural equation modeling have confirmed the internal and external validity of the conceptual contructs that the instrument is designed to measure. Finally the KMCA process has been proven successful judging from the acceptance of the methodology by the respondants as well as the actions it has prompted from the management for making improvements in KM.
|Published - Jul 20 2004