HR’s role in knowledge management

By Nick Bontis
|CHRR, Guide to HR Technology|Last Updated: 03/11/2003

Mining the wealth of knowledge in an organization is appealing to HR. The idea that there is a pool of untapped knowledge, simply because employees don’t have the forum to share it, is appealing.

Unfortunately, knowledge management has been dominated by IT-types for the past few years. But it really is an HR issue, and HR managers should be brought into the decision-making process surrounding the purchase and implementation of any knowledge management or portal solution.

A 2002 study of knowledge management behaviour, such as knowledge creation and sharing, looked at HR issues key to these types of activities. The study, sponsored by Andersen Consulting and the Saratoga Institute, looked at 25 financial services organizations with average revenues of (US)$8.5 billion and 13,000 employees — types of organizations that, because of a large number of white collar workers, can leverage vast stocks of intellectual capital.