Wednesday, 24 December 2008

Merry Christmas 2008

To everyone who reads the Knowledge Connections Blog, Merry Christmas the KC team will be back in early 2009!

Friday, 19 December 2008

The relationship between KM and Enterprise 2.0

What if anything is the relationship between KM and Enterprise 2.0, this is the issue explored in this post on the LibraryClips blog.

The post starts with a rather provocative question "What gives the right for KM to hijack Enterprise 2.0?" Enterprise 2.0 as well well know is about using Social Media within the organisation, so building connections and providing tools for individuals to use, not rolling out one tool across the business to encourage Knowledge Sharing (a very poor definition/example of KM)

These are both very interesting posts, which are well worth reading.

[Hat Tip - Bill Ives]

Wednesday, 17 December 2008

Can you find the people you need?

Not a rhetorical question but the title of a post on the Jon Mell blog which stresses the importance of being able to find people within your organisation.

So how important is it to find people within your organisation?

Monday, 15 December 2008

Intranet 2.0

Looking to rebuild your intranet so that is an "Intranet 2.0", then look no further then this post from the KMSpace blog on "Intranet 2.0 in ten easyish steps"

Some of the steps that most interested me...

  • "Turn Users into Authors. Turn readers into writers. Let people edit documents. Put a big "EDIT" button on each page. Seek information and knowledge. Graymont, a mining company, pushes intranet editing out to everyone, including blue collar workers. The truck drivers have access to and can edit the intranet"
  • "Add Signals. When something changes, you should signal those who are interested in it. An email notice or an RSS feed accomplish this goal. The key result of signal is that it turns the intranet into a communications platform"
  • "Lead By Example. The more senior people ou get involved the more likely the intranet will be successful. CEO comments and pages tend to be the most popular. The CEO's blog will be the most read blog"

Thursday, 11 December 2008

ROI of Social Software

I love writing about ROI and here is another post that interested me. The post from the blog of Jon Mell describes how ROI can be used to get approval for a Social Software application.

There are a number of reasons for this...

Firstly "Social software can often be approved on the basis of time saving, even if the true value is innovation."

Secondly "it is easier to make ROI cases for social software projects which involve collaboration between people who know each other, as opposed to projects designed to help you find people you don’t know"

Finally "there is a good reason why social projects to help you find expertise and innovate with people you might not otherwise know have such trouble with ROI. Traditional IT projects have an ROI because they help speed up business processes. They might allow a client to sign up over the web, for example. An organisation knows how many clients they sign up per month, how long that would take their staff over the phone, and what that cost is in terms of salary. They can therefore work out how much they would save if 50% of their clients signed up over the web instead"

Thursday, 4 December 2008

Will KM budgets weather the downturn?

This was the question asked when APQC's KM community came together during a monthly call. This post on the KM Edge blog outlines the results of the poll.

Monday, 1 December 2008

Collaboration is it a "dirty" word?

Does the word "collaboration" bring you out in shivers and hearing people talking about Social Media drive you crazy, well you might not be alone according to this post on the Register blog. From the post...

"The theory that underpins social software driven collaboration is that power accrues most to those who give away the most. They gain a reputation, they are sought after and, as a result, they become more secure.

Contrast this with the old way of doing things. Hoard knowledge and hide the inner workings of your expertise. Become indispensible and, therefore, unsackable"

The post also includes a "mini-poll" in which you can demonstrate how valuable you find Social Media. You might want to follow this poll up by reading an article about Collaborative tools called "The case for collaborative tools" this paints a much prettier picture.

Friday, 28 November 2008

How to get people to share knowledge

How do you get people to share knowledge is the question asked on the Is this Wisdom blog. Should you offer incentives? or make Knowledge Sharing part of a process?

The post points to article on the Cognitive Edge blog in which Dave Snowden discusses how Knowledge should be shared. In his words "it should be natural" that is it should be part of a real situation and part of an immediate need, which people will find hard to refuse.

Well worth a quick read.

Monday, 24 November 2008

An introduction to collaborative tools

The Anecdote Blog has a short post on "Getting started with collaborative tools" this is essentially a list of the different collaborative tools available with links through to Common Craft videos explaining how they work.

Nonetheless a good introduction to these types of tools.

Monday, 17 November 2008

The seven principles of Law Firm Knowledge Management

Dave Snowden has written about the Seven Principles of Knowledge Management in this Blog Post. The first "Knowledge can only be volunteered it cannot be conscripted" rings true at the moment, especially with all the talk of KM Incentives there has been recently.

Friday, 14 November 2008

The Sharepoint Sessions

Looking for some information on the latest use of Sharepoint and how is it currently being deployed? Then look no further then have a look at this blog post "The Sharepoint Sessions – What the Implementers are Saying" on the Portals and KM Blog for an introduction to some of the uses of Sharepoint within an enterprise.

Wednesday, 12 November 2008

So long ROI!

There has been a lot of discussion recently about one of our favourite subjects Return on Investment (ROI) and how to apply this to Social Media projects.

Some interesting posts to look at for an introduction to this area include:

This post really sums up the difficulty of measuring any project that involves technology.

Have a look at some of these post to see how the discussion might affect the evaluation of projects you're currently working on.

Monday, 10 November 2008

What are the hot topics in KM?

This was the question I was asked last week and which I'm currently struggling with...what sprung to mind first of all was Web 2.0 and Enterprise 2.0, followed by Social Media, Collaboration and finally Sharepoint, but surely this cant be everything...or maybe it my question is... there anything else that people consider at "hot topic" at the moment?

Why KM incentives wont work

A thought provoking post here from the Knowledge Thoughts blog on Knowledge Management (KM) Incentives, this follows a previous post where the author gathered feedback from readers.

In this post the author discusses why KM Incentives wont work and some of the side effects and issues associated with offering KM Incentives.

Friday, 7 November 2008

Social Media v Knowledge Management

I for one didn't know there was a war going on between Social Media and Knowledge Management, why the two cant sit down over a nice cup of tea and sort this whole thing out I don't know.

Anyway this topic has certainly got the attention of a few bloggers, with the following catching my eye over the last few weeks...

Wednesday, 5 November 2008

Knowledge Management in a 2.0 World

Doug Cornelius has written an interesting piece in the the October/November 2008 edition of the Canadian Bar Association Journal in it he describes how it has never been more important for Lawyers and Law firms to be able to organise and find the knowledge they have created and captured.

Thankfully the emergence of Web 2.0 tools mean it has never been easier! Doug raises some interesting points in the article including:

  • How do we manage knowledge in a Web 2.0 environment?
  • Can blogs, wikis and other Web 2.0 tools allow for better knowledge management?

Doug outlines the beneftis and opportunities associated with using these tools, although slightly biased towards Wikis the article is a good introduction to how these tools could be used in a Law Firm and how variations of these tools are making the Knowledge Capture process easier and more streamlined.

Monday, 3 November 2008

Law Firms Weighing Wikis

Thankfully the title of this article shouldn't be taken literally, I'm not entirely sure how you would "weigh" Know How, this is actually an article from which describes how law firms (in the US) are using Wikis and the degrees in which they are being used.

Friday, 31 October 2008

Knowledge Management and the Subprime/Credit Crisis

Its been a while but eventually I knew we were going to have to post something about the current economic crisis and how it affects Knowledge Management, so here we go, not one but two posts about Knowledge Management and the Subprime/Credit Crisis.

The first post "The Credit Crisis and Social Software - Part 1 - Why we need a return to credit based on social relationships" from the Fast Forward Blog discusses a social Credit system and how wealth within organisations doesn't necessarily mean how healthly your bank balance is but how healthly your social network is.

The second post Knowledge management and the world financial crisis from the Brad Hinton Blog describes how important Knowledge Management is and will be during the current crisis. From the post...

"Knowledge management also works to reduce costs through improving workflow, facilitating efficient and effective information capture, access, and dissemination, facilitates conversation and human networks, and enhances collaboration and connectivity between individuals for common purpose"

The second blog post is definitely worth reading.

Monday, 20 October 2008

Understanding Knowledge Management

This is the title of a White Paper published by Parachute Consulting in July of this year. The report has been designed for people just starting out in Knowledge Management and looks at how Knowledge Management can:

  • Reduce costs
  • Increase effectiveness
  • Improve quality
  • Drive innovation
  • Reduce operational risks

Although the report has been written for the public sector this looks like a useful introduction to Knowledge Management for anybody.

Monday, 13 October 2008

Using Open Source & Web 2.0 to share knowledge

This is a useful if slightly abstract post on the KM World & Intranets 2008 Blog, which looks at how Capgemini went from a static, ageing and expensive Know How system to an Open Source, Collaborative system.

Friday, 10 October 2008

Taxonomy Development for Knowledge Management

The Green Chameleon Blog has posted a link to this article by two Librarians at Boeing who have written about the development of a Taxonomy for Knowledge Management.

This discusses the stages involved in developing a Taxonomy, which include:

  • Determining Requirements
  • Identifying Concepts
  • Developing a draft Taxonomy
  • Reviewing with users
  • Refining the Taxonomy
  • Applying the Taxonomy to content
  • Managing and maintaining the Taxonomy

Wednesday, 8 October 2008

The future of Knowledge Management

From the KM World & Intranets 2008 Blog comes this thought provoking post on the "Future of Knowledge Management" in it the author points to this post from Stuart Henshall. From the blog post:

"Individuals are increasingly using personal tools, blogs, wikis, social networks, mobile phone, etc. As they move into this realm publicly they create more information about themselves. I’m increasingly seeing these tools being put to use by marketing / PR. KM seems to be missing these social media implications. Thus adoption of these tools is not being driven by the need to manage knowledge. Rather it’s driven by responding faster, being more adaptive, building on what others do, opening up systems so they can find that they need just in time."

"I’m thinking more and more that the social media experts are likely to usurp or overturn many KM practices in time. The fact that SAP, Oracle and IBM are today all working with Twitter like updates is at least encouraging"

A very interesting post, epsecially with the development of tools like Yammer

Monday, 6 October 2008

Real Life Sharepoint Experiences

Doug Cornelius from the KM Space blog has put together an interesting post about "Real Life experiences/implementations" of Sharepoints within enterprises. The full post is available here.

Thursday, 2 October 2008

Knowledge Management Blogs

Not enjoying reading Knowledge Connections? You wont hurt my feelings if you admit you are also reading one of the 50 Knowledge Management Blogs listed in this study, from the Website of the company running the Study:

"In an explorative study about Knowledge Management weblogs Pumacy Technologies AG has been analysing active KM-blogs by comparing figures from August 2008"

There are quite a few blogs here, which I didn't know about so I'll be taking a look at some of these in due course.

[Hat Tip - Above and Beyond KM]

Wednesday, 1 October 2008

Knowledge Management for Legal Professionals

If you're interested in Knowledge Management or just want to see what other people are saying about the subject, then a good place to start might be some of the Groups highlighted in this post on Slaw.

If you belong to any of these Social Networking Groups I'd encouarge you to sign up!

Tuesday, 30 September 2008

Incentives in KM

Should incentives be used to encourage people to contribute Know How? This post is a summary of feedback received by the Knowledge Thoughts Blog. For more on incentives in Knowledge Management have a look at previous posts from this blog.

Monday, 29 September 2008

Support for KM

In another great post the Above and Beyond KM blog looks at how support for Knowledge Management initiatives/projects is crucial to their success.

From the blog post:

"..within a lot of enterprises the members of senior management are sometimes those least likely to understand or use a KM system. Therefore, their support can be theoretical and that gets communicated to the rank and file as a lukewarm endorsement. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to guess how the rank and file react to a mandate from above that doesn't seem to have any teeth"

In Law Firms the situation is even worse:

"With respect to law firm knowledge management the problem is widespread. The senior partners or administrative partners will certainly understand on paper the potential benefits of a knowledge management program. They may even remember back to the days when they were junior associates facing a new assignment without models or practice guides. However, they've come a long way since then and have platoons of associates under them who deal with those issues firsthand. And, with that distance comes a loss of urgency to pursue knowledge management"

So the question is, how can we encourage or gather support for Knowledge Management? Well there isn't an easy way to do it but the blog post highlights several examples of projects that have received the support of "Management" and flourished as a result, have a look at the Blog post and these links for a good introduction to this issue.

Thursday, 25 September 2008

Do you have what it takes... collaborate?

Two posts here which caught my eye. The first from the always excellent Above and Beyond KM Blog called "Do you have what it takes to Collaborate?" in this post the author discusses the skills it takes to collaborate effectively. These are listed as:

  1. How to apologise
  2. How to advocate your point of view without harming your collaborator's feelings
  3. How to spot when a conversation gets emotional and then make it safe again to continue meaningful dialogue
  4. How to listen and get into the shoes of your collaborator
  5. How to define a mutual intent that will inspire action
  6. How to tell and elicit stories
  7. How to get things done so you have something to show for your collaboration

So based on this, do you have what it takes? The second post from the KM Librarians Blog, discusses how much information individuals are actually willing to share. Called "Putting my collaboration attitude to the test" the author relates how they were asked to share materials for a recent seminar they delivered, which begs the question...

"When do you share everything, and with whom? As a civil servant, I have already arguably been paid to create the presentation, and my colleagues in other ministries and departments should have access to the text of my presentation. How does this argument work in firms? Where are the boundaries - do you share with co-workers, but not with clients? How about presentations to professional groups?"

Some interesting discussions here...

Wednesday, 17 September 2008

Ambient awareness

What does it really mean when you start using Social Networking tools like Facebook or Twitter? Well, there is an interesting take on the impact of these Social Networking tools in this article from the International Herald Tribune.

In it and this blog post the authors discuss how using these types of tools can give you a good sense of what people (even people you haven't met) like and dislike, this they call "ambient awareness"

This could theoretically then be applied to an organisation so individuals would be aware of what other people are doing in other countries and can connect and collaborate with them.

Friday, 5 September 2008

Knowledge sharing in 140 characters or less!

This is a great post from the Library Clips Blog in it the author describes how a micro-blogging solution could work well as Knowledge Sharing tool for a support team or a customer facing team.

From the blog post...

"There are many times when colleagues at work discover something in our office, but are too busy to blog about it, this is when micro-blogs comes into the picture. People may find blog posting takes up too much time because they treat it as formal publishing, and fair enough (I covered this in my KM 2.0 Culture post). We have tried to overcome this with posting to a blog by email, making it feel very informal, now you can “flick a blog post”, just like you “flick an email”.

I definitely agree with this point, creating a blog post can be quite time consuming especially if you are using an Internet based application and the site either crashes or is slow.

"I feel that people will indeed post to a micro-blog as the content is the length of an SMS, ie. a max of 140 characters. This is not hard at all, and the format encourages a type of informalness."

What a brilliant idea, most people know how to send text messages and micro-blogging sites like Twitter are so similar to text messaging or instant messaging I sometimes find it hard to tell the difference. The great thing about these sites is that any knowledge "shared" remains on the site making it a much more useful and crucially searchable resource.

Interesting posts this week

I've been playing catch-up recently so I thought I would consolidate several blog posts into one by listing some interesting posts I have read this week.

In Why worry about Law Firm KM ROI Mary Abraham questions whether Knowledge Workers within Law Firms should stop worrying about demonstrating ROI for Knowledge Management.

Another post on the Above and Beyond KM blog that caught my eye was KM 2.0 Working Smarter this is actually a review of another post by Dave Pollard, which looks at the skills that Knowledge Workers are going to require in the 21st Century, thought provoking.

Things start to get even more personal with this post from the Anecdote blog on the Seven Personal Skills you need for effective collaboration. More next week.

Thursday, 4 September 2008

Dancing and Knowledge Management

You wouldn't usually associate Dancing with Knowledge Management but Mary Abraham over at the Above and Beyond KM blog has done exactly that!

In this post Mary describes how the process of "learning to do KM"or in fact anything new is reliant not just on reading from an instruction book (in her post she refers to this book) but other more "human influences"

"A personal sense of rhythm and physical gracefulness for one, vision and organizational culture for the other. So as you learn to "do KM" or dance, keep in mind that the books don't know your individual circumstances and can't dictate a single best course of action. All they can do is suggest approaches that have been helpful for others"

I'm still trying to guess what type of dance KM would be, the Tango maybe?

Tuesday, 19 August 2008

Is Enterprise 2.0 also KM 2.0?

The Portals and KM blog reports here on an article published in The Information Advisor on Enterprise and Knowledge Management.

In the article they report that the label or term Enterprise 2.0 is here to stay and describe exactly what Enterprise 2.0 is, what its relationship is to Knowledge Management and solutions can be thought of as Enterprise 2.0.

This is a short but very interesting article on Enterprise 2.0, which is well worth reading.

Wednesday, 6 August 2008

Is Knowledge Management going social?

The latest issued of Inside Knowledge Magazine contains a short piece by David Gurteen called KM (2.0) goes social. In it he describes how traditionally Knowledge Management was about "capturing messy and unstructured information" and making it available within an organisation, usally via a technical solution.

Then Knowledge Management started to develop into a different form where people relied less on technology and more on "soft tools" like communities of practice and after action reviews. Since then a whole suite of new tools have developed otherwise known as Web 2.0 tools (Blogs, Wikis etc) these have impacted on Knowledge Management as Knowledge Managers have started to see the potential of using these social tools within organisation.

Why are these tools so powerful? As David says "Social KM is an emerging social model of KM that clearly places responsibility for knowledge sharing and making knowledge productive in the hands of the individual"

The article is well worth reading and appears to be freely available online.

Tuesday, 5 August 2008

Knowledge Management and Web 2.0

Doug Cornelius of the KM Space Blog has posted the slides of his recent talk on Knowledge Management and Web 2.0. This looks like an interesting presentation although like most presentations published online it is hard to get a huge amount of value from it because there is no accompanying audio.

Still worth reviewing the slide deck though!

Why a Wiki?

This is a funny short video on why you should be using a Wiki in your organisation.

[Hat Tip - KM Librarians Blog]

Thursday, 17 July 2008

Organising knowledge...

...right before your eyes. This sounds a bit like a line from the Transformers movie, but actually something very interesting is happening on Librarything.

Librarything is essentially a collaborative space where users can catalogue their own books and meet people who have similar or matching tastes in books. What is interesting is some of the discussions that take place and the groups that they form. In this group users are building an Open Shelves Classification (OSC) scheme, essentially they are building a taxonomy from the bottom up, but collaboratively, fascinating.

The Green Chameleon blog has more on the story.

The Tacitness of Wikis

This is a useful post from the Library Clips blog for anyone who is thinking about using a Wiki for Knowledge Sharing but isn't 100% certain about the benefits of doing so. In it the author describes reading another post, which argues that Wikis can be used for sharing Tacit Knowledge:

"Documents that are open and dynamic allow people to evolve the documents by direct editing or leaving comments…ie. people are sharing their experience and what they know can add to the richness of the document"

In this way documents can "evolve" by being edited by a number of individuals rather then being created by one individual who has no exposure to other peoples thoughts and comments until the document is published. Interesting stuff.

Thursday, 10 July 2008

Wiki while you work

A great article title here from Doug Cornelius of the KM Space Blog, this article is one of many on Wikis/Collaborative tools that is included in the latest Knowledge Management White Paper released by the International Legal Technology Association.

Wednesday, 9 July 2008

Does making Knowledge Sharing mandatory make it easier?

There has been a lot of discussion recently in the Blogosphere about making Knowledge Sharing and specifically blogging mandatory. In the eyes of many this would encourage individuals to blog about what they are doing for instance enquiries they answered, documents they have worked on and in doing so make this information easily available to others.

Mary Abraham at the Above and Beyond Km Blog writes about this in her post "Knowledge Management made easier" and highlights the "The potential power" of having everyone from Support Staff to Senior Partner blogging, but as she suggests would it work in a Law Firm?

The argument against everyone being asked to blog is that this seems to go against what Web 2.0, Social Media represents. In my mind that is if someone wants to collaborate or contribute on a blog or a Wiki or another tool that has been created then it should be down to them, it shouldn't be something that they "have to do" and doing so may just de-motivate them and alienate them from contributing Know how at all. This argument in Dave Snowdens post here.

Tuesday, 1 July 2008

Do we need incentives to encourage Knowledge Sharing?

We all know the Knowledge Sharing is important, but how do we convince staff within our organisations that they should be sharing documents, know-how and other knowledge they may have?

Is providing an incentive the answer? This post on the KM Virtual Blog takes a look at the arguments for and against incentives.

The Legal implications of Enterprise 2.0

Doug Cornelius of the KM Space blog has posted recently about the "Legal implications" of implementing Enterprise 2.0 applications in Law Firms. These came as a result of his attendance at a recent Conference on Web 2.0.

So when it comes down to it, what are the legal issues and concerns that people have when they come to thinking about or sitting down and discussing the rollout of Enterprise 2.0 technologies. According to the post, there not that dissimilar from the issues people had when email was first introduced, these include:

  • Ownership of IP
  • Privacy
  • Respondent Superior
  • Employment Regulation
  • e-Discovery

There are fuller explanations of these issues on the KM Space blog.

Monday, 23 June 2008

Where do you think you're going?!

...or have you contributed enough Know-How to retire? is the question asked on the Above and Beyond KM Blog...

...some interesting questions raised in this short post.

Wednesday, 18 June 2008

A model for KM 2.0

The Library Clips blog has published an interesting post on KM 2.0 in it the author describes both visually and in writing how Knowledge Management works in a Web 2.0 world.

I'm a visual person so found the drawing more appealing.

Tuesday, 3 June 2008

Collaboration its buzzing

Everybody seems to be talking about collaboration at the moment and two posts from the Above and Beyond KM blog written by Mary Abraham reveal exactly what people are talking about.

In the first post Collaboration and the Golden Rule, the author discusses how adherence with the Golden Rule of collaboration "allows participants to work together and to share their insights knowing that they will have access to the best work of colleagues and will receive fair credit for their own contributions" this is one of the first steps towards showing those individuals who are not 100% certain of the benefits of collaboration how it can work.

In the second post Setting limits on Collaboration Mary points out that it is very tempting to say everything we do is collaboration (Am I collaborating with Mary now by posting this blog post?) but if we do so the term becomes meaningless, very interesting.

Building online communities

At our last meeting one of the discussion points was around "Building online communities" a quick search of Google shows that this is a subject that is much discussed with some useful looking resources in the results:

Are these useful resources?

Friday, 30 May 2008

Wikis versus Document Management Systems

Doug Cornelius of the KM Space Blog has written a very useful article on why you might want to use a Wiki in preference to a Document Management System (DMS). The article looks at the features of both Wikis and DMS's and how users interact with the systems.

The what and how of Sharepoint

If you're thinking about using Sharepoint and want to know what currently integrates with it then you'll definitely want to have a look at the product compatibility matrix on

This shows who integrates what into Sharepoint and how!

Friday, 23 May 2008

Burn your newsletters!

At our most recent meeting one of the discussion points was around the creation of newsletters, how often they should be sent, what format, what should and what shouldn't be included. Some of the discussion focussed on two blog articles which looked at newsletter production, for anyone who didn't see a copy of these articles, they are linked below:

I've also found the following resources, which might be of interest:

Wednesday, 21 May 2008

Which way forward for KM?

There has been some discussion in the Blogosphere recently around the future of Knowledge Management. Two recent posts have caught my eye, they were:

  • Which way forward for KM? this post from the Knowledge Board blog comes in the wake of a huge number of changes over the last decade and takes a look at the future of Knowledge Management.

Both very interesting blog posts.

Monday, 19 May 2008


Two blog posts here on ROI which caught my eye (does that rhyme?) the first is a post from the Inside Out blog which asks How do you measure the ROI of social software? The second from the Green Chameleon Blog looks at the ROI of Taxonomy initiatives, this post contains three videos which look extremely useful.

Does you firm value Knowledge?

The Above and Beyond KM blog recently asked whether "your firm" really values knowledge?

This is an interesting question, because it isn't complicated a simple Yes or No answer, more interesting is the extent to which investment in Knowledge is valued. That is the time spent, creating, collating and disseminating Knowledge this will ultimately have an impact on how well received and funded KM initatives will be.

Another thought provoking post from the Above and Beyond blog.

Thursday, 15 May 2008

Is Knowledge Sharing all about your pay cheque?

I enjoyed reading this post on the Library Clips blog and thought it definitely deserved a mention here. Phil Bradley has a useful summary of the article on his blog which I will take some excerpts from.

Essentially the author of the original blog post describes how there are two different approaches to the sharing of information within organisations. You either hoard it or you share it and this is usually determined by the type of organisation you work in.

The author gives as an example two different types of law firms, one based in the U.S. where lawyers are competing against each and tend to get paid on that basis, "eat what you kill", this approach isn't great for encouraging collaboration and the sharing of Knowledge. The other is a firm in the UK where lawyers are paid according to the financial performance of the firm overall, this approach encourages lawyers to share knowledge so that the organisation as a whole benefits.

Phil makes the point that in the second organisation Web 2.0 tools like Blogs and Wikis would encourage people to collaborate and submit more Knowledge but is this really Web 2.0? This is a really interesting article which I would encourage anyone to read.

Wednesday, 14 May 2008

A KISS for your intranet?

The Knowledge Thoughts Blog has an interesting post on collecting metrics from your Intranet, they argue that Keep It Simple Stupid is an expression that should be used whenever you begin to think about collating metrics from your intranet.

One of the other points they raise is about numbers, one of my bugbears, in the example they give they query whether "A page has been accessed 54,000 times since 2 June 2007" is a good number? I don't see how it can be unless it is broken down into more detail or more context is added to the figure e.g. how long did the person stay on the page, what did they look at whilst they were there, where did they go when the left the page.

A short post well worth reading.

Wednesday, 7 May 2008

Faceted Filtering

The Green Chameleon Blog has linked to a very interesting article on how you can use Faceted Filtering or searching to limit/narrow the results returned by users.

The article explains very clearly how to create a simple and intuitive user interface and is a must for anyone looking at their current search application.

Friday, 2 May 2008

SocialText 3.0

The Headshift Blog recently reported on the rollout of Version 3.0 of the SocialText Wiki application. According to Headshift "major new features are personal dashboards and dynamic people profiles"

The author makes the point that developments with this type of technology mean that we are now closer to "social networking within the firewall" The author then discusses how "Dashboards" like iGoogle could be used behind the firewall to keep users updated with information like "new stuff on the intranet, news updates, latest internal blog posts, external rss feeds and other subscriptions, a list of new starters and people's own Facebook mini-feed"

I love the idea of using the Facebook mini-feed within an Enterprise, even if it was just used to say "James is in a meeting" or "James is enjoying lunch" Naturally I think there are wider applications and the potential for using the feed to show documents you are working on or could also be explored so that anybody viewing your feed would see a list of documents you had worked on during the course of the day. The possibilities are as they say endless...

Monday, 28 April 2008

Three on Sharepoint

The Knowledge Thoughts Blog has posted not one, not two but three, extremely useful looking posts on Sharepoint.

The first post Sharepoint Resources for KM People is a set of links to other tools and resources available on the internet. The second is a presentation from KM Legal on using Sharepoint within a law firm. The third and final post is around why Sharepoint projects fail and contains links to a further four articles on this subject.

Thursday, 24 April 2008

Resources Above and Beyond KM

I'm really enjoying reading the posts on new Blog Above and Beyond KM, in two recent posts the author has provided links to some useful looking resources, these are:

The latter of these looks really useful and is described as a toolkit "that provides guidance and resources for organizations interested in developing knowledge sharing among their employees"

Thursday, 17 April 2008

Using Blogs and Wikis

A useful looking series of posts here from the KM Space Blog. In the first the author looks at how Wikis can be used for Project Management the great value of a Wiki is summed up in the following extract:

"With a wiki, you give a common space for the project team to keep information and share information on the project. As items on the project are updated, the subscribers to the wikis get the notification of the change. (We have been using PBwiki to manage our knowledge management projects for almost year. A wiki is a great way to centralize information and publicize information at the same time.)"

In the second post the author describes how they are using Sharepoint to create blogs, these blogs are "targeted at hosting firm announcements". In the final post the author looks at how they are using Sharepoint to create Wikis, he describes how their "first wiki was an import of our existing knowledge management wiki into the SharePoint platform" and that the second Wiki they created was used for "managing HotDocs and our HotDocs templates. The vision for this wiki was to create the manual for each of the HotDocs templates and to share information among the HotDocs developers. The wiki page becomes the item returned on a search for the HotDocs template."

Some really interesting and exciting uses of Sharepoint/Blogs and Wikis which I would encourage everyone to have a read of.

KM Library : Tools and techniques

Above and Beyond KM have linked to what looks like a useful site called the KM Library. The KM Library contains links to cases studies on using well known Knowledge Management techniques such as:

  • After Action Reviews
  • Case Study
  • Communities of Practice
  • Gone Well, Not Gone Well
  • Knowledge Cafe
  • Knowledge Exchange
  • Knowledge Marketplace
  • Peer Assist
  • Rapid Evidence Review
  • Retrospective Review

There are some techniques in this list that I haven't heard of so the list is well worth reviewing if you are looking for a new technique to approach a problem.

Monday, 14 April 2008

Improvements to LNB

Lexis Nexis Butterworths have made a demo of improvements to the Global Platform available on their revamped UK website.

Improvements include:

  • New cleaner, simpler homepages for legal and tax users
  • A dedicated URL for tax users (
  • Favourite sources easily accessed from your Start Page
  • Easier access to key legislation and cases
  • Popular features such as Related Content links made more visible
  • Fewer drop downs for simpler navigation
  • Ability to build your own dedicated Practice Area Pages

The demo is well worth looking at for a sneak preview of the new LNB look and feel.

Thursday, 10 April 2008

Invoices are top of the bill

An interesting article here from the Law Society Gazette which discusses how electronic billing may soon become a reality and potentially demanded by professional service firm clients.

Knowledge sharing vs Knowledge Management

Two thought provoking posts here from new Knowledge Management Blog Above and Beyond KM in the first post Knowledge Sharing vs Knowledge Management the author talks about how Knowledge Sharing is better than Knowledge Management especially if you have to "manage" knowledge on a daily basis. They also argue that the current crop of Knowledge tools, Blogs, Wikis and Social Networking applications actually encourage Knowledge Sharing rather then Knowledge Management.

In the second post Knowledge Sharing: Better Late Than Never the author provides some links to a number of articles/posts on Knowledge Sharing initiatives.

Friday, 28 March 2008

KM 1.0 and KM 2.0 defined

Library Clips has a thought provoking post here on the difference between KM 1.0 and KM 2.0 which is well worth reading.

In the post KM 1.0 is defined as "developing specific knowledge sharing tools that are used to capture and share knowledge in the form of structured content"

Wheras KM 2.0 is described as "a way to do your work, and by default share knowledge at the same time, without it having to be an explicit task".

Thursday, 27 March 2008

What is Enterprise 2.0?

A great series of posts here on Enterprise 2.0 which are well worth reading:

Thanks to Binary Law for pointing me towards these.

43 Knowledge Management definitions

If you're looking for a definition of Knowledge Management then you might want to have a look at this blog post on the SIMS Learning Connections Blog, in it the author has collated 43...yes 43 definitions of Knowledge Management.

Tuesday, 11 March 2008

Technology and the provision of Know-how

This article is a bit old, but is well worth reading as an introduction to both the last ten years of Legal Know-How provision and some thoughts on the next ten years.

Fostering a collaboration culture

The Anecdote Blog has put together a nice post on "How to create/foster a culture of collaboration" They have included a series of eight steps, which are:

  • Appoint a collaboration co-ordinator
  • Create a network of collaboration supporters
  • Help people understand the process of collaboration
  • Ensure the Collaboration Co-ordinator reports regularly to senior leaders
  • Get the most from your collaboration tools
  • Start communities of practice
  • Promote good collaborators and hold back bad collaborators
  • Practice collaborating for when a crises occurs

An interesting post with lots of links to useful resources on the Anecdote Blog.

Friday, 7 March 2008

The end of email?

A couple of interesting posts here on what is perceived as the "end of email" I have to admit to being guilty of sometimes emailing people when I could quite easily walk down the corridor to ask them something or phone them.

On the other hand I do use RSS extensively and am a huge fan. If I was to think of any one tool that had changed my working practice significantly it would have to be RSS.

Monday, 3 March 2008

Research on Enterprise 2.0 Adoption

Another interesting post from the Fast Forward Blog, this time about the adoption of Web 2.0 technologies within Enterprises, otherwise known as Enterprise 2.0.

The report, which is published by Awareness is available in full on their Website.

Thursday, 28 February 2008

Document management and collaboration

Mark Gould of Addleshaw Goddard has just launched a new blog, called Enlightened Tradition the blog will look at the use of Knowledge Management by Law Firms. In one of his first posts Mark looks at the issue of Document Management and Collaboration using both Document Management Systems (DMS) and Wikis.

Mark raises some interesting points around the use of DMS systems by Law Firms, arguing that Law Firms don't necessarily require DMS systems to be "collaborative" because of the nature and type of documents they are creating. Having said that I believe Wikis can be used in Law Firms to facilitate collaboration but you need to consider carefully how you will tie their use into any existing DMS or Content Management System.

Waking up to the benefits of Enterprise Search

This is the title of an interesting article in Computer Weekly, in it the author discusses how finding information from many different collections both internally and externally has become increasingly difficult.

To face this challenge many Law Firms have developed or are considering developing "Enterprise Search" applications. These applications allow Law Firms to store, managed and then retrieve content from multiple sources using a single search interface. Law firms mentioned in the article include Norton Rose, Linklaters and Field Fisher Waterhouse.

Friday, 22 February 2008

Wikis vs Knowledge Management

Is a Wiki a tool or an approach? In this post on the Fast Forward Blog the author argues that conceivably a Wiki is an approach to Knowledge Management and that more comparisons can be drawn between Wikis and Knowledge Management.

Whats HOT in Knowledge management?

Two posts here from the excellent KM Space blog on the current trends within Knowledge Management:

Do Wikis belong in Law Firms?

Some interesting posts here on whether Wikis should and how they can be used in Law Firms, useful for anyone who has an interest in using Wikis:

Could you give up email?

This is what one Blogger did here here, instead of using email they used Social Networking sites and microblogging solutions like Facebook and Twitter to start conversations.

The results are interesting.

Wednesday, 20 February 2008

KPI's and Knowledge Management

The sldies from our recent presenation on this subject are now available online.

Thursday, 14 February 2008

Money talks... interesting post here from the Law 21 Blog in it the author describes how a firm in Canada has replaced Lotus Notes with a Wiki, all good stuff. The "real kicker" as described by the author is how the firm encourages staff to contribute to the Wiki...

"But the kicker is that in order to motivate employees to participate, every Wiki contribution puts the author’s name into a draw for a $1,000 prize. That, as you might imagine, spurred the rapid development of the Wiki, which is now an invaluable firm asset."

This is an interesting post on the demands placed on lawyers time and what appears to me to be a conflict between billing time and contributing to the firms Knowledge Management System. As the author suggests in order to do so there need to be systems in place that encourage fee-earners to contribute know-how that can compete with incentives provided for billable hours or time recorded.

Monday, 11 February 2008

Law Firm Knowledge Management..the 2.0 way

An interesting series of posts here on the KM Space Blog on how Web 2.0 tools could be used within Law Firms to manage Knowledge effectively. The tools discussed include:

Explaining Taxonomies for Websites

The Green Chameleon Blog has posted about an excellent resource on the Digital Web Magazine site in the author explains how Taxonomies can be used to improve methods of search and navigation on large Websites and Intranets.

These improvements could include "site maps, A-Z indexes, sophisticated search engines, and generally improved navigational design—and playing a potential role in all of these methods is well-planned taxonomy"

Thursday, 7 February 2008

Social networking tools for the Enterprise

This is an interesting post from the Social Media blog, in it the author has provided the answers to a series of questions that were raised during the course of his research into a presentation. The questions included;

  • How important do you feel it is for a company to be represented on social networking sites (LinkedIn, Facebook, etc.)?
  • From an enterprise usage point of view, should companies allow their employees to access and encourage the active use of existing social networks, or should they build their own internal social network?
  • What systems or technologies should companies be looking to in order to harness collective wisdom and help individuals make decisions?

If you've ever had to answer any of these questions or have raised them yourself, then you might find another answer here.

Friday, 25 January 2008

The changing nature of Intranet content

Richard Dennison has written an interesting post on the changing nature of the the BT Intranet content on his blog Inside Out.

In it he describes how the content that is being published to the BT Intranet is changing because of the increased use of collaborative technologies and the move towards more user generated content rather then static documents created by and maintained by an individual.

Wednesday, 23 January 2008

Knowledge Management Bookshelf

Doug Cornelius over at KM Space has put together what looks like a really useful list of essential reading if you are interested in Knowledge Management.

There is a slight law firm bias, some of this are still on my list to purchase though.

Thursday, 17 January 2008

Starting a community of Practice

The Anecdote blog has a great post on starting a Community of Practice which is well worth a read if you are considering starting a Community of Practice...or even if you're not!

Tacit v Expicit Knowledge

Doug Cornelius at KM Space has an interesting post on Tacit v Explicit Knowledge, in it he argues that to make a distinction between these two types of knowledge is wrong.

"I think this is the wrong distinction to make. The knowledge is either findable by your computer or it is not findable by your computer"

Which begs the question, what does he mean by findable on your computer?

"By finding the knowledge I mean finding the knowledge itself or finding the person who has the knowledge. Certainly all knowledge within a firm is not going to be transferred into a form that is findable by a computer. That is why it is important to identify subject matter experts and make them findable by a computer search"

Doug also makes some interesting points about the types of Knowledge most of us generate;

"Knowledge written down on a piece of paper and thrown in a file does not do anyone any good"

"A file saved on your local computer does not make the knowledge in that file findable by anyone but you"

"Sending out an email makes the knowledge potentially more findable. But, you as the sender and all of recipients are going to end up keeping that email in different places"

My understanding of Tacit v Explict is that Explicit is what is written down and Tacit is what you and only you know, but which should be stored somewhere. Am I wrong?

A wiki way to manage meetings

I hesitate to use the word "badass" on this blog, but the following post provides some examples (including "badass") of how to manage meetings using Wikis.

My favourite suggestion has to be;

"Some meetings are just well-worded email messages and an updated project plan, meaning NO meeting necessary. Trim where you can. People loathe meetings, and the people who love them usually have something wrong with them.

Wiki tip: This is why a meeting should start with the wiki page to construct the agenda. If it’s clear that the items don’t need much discussion, and aren’t worthy of setting aside time for a meeting. Just craft a clear message on the wiki page, and send out a quick email with a link to the page. Then be sure to monitor comments on the page, and respond to questions & concerns."

Thursday, 10 January 2008

The challenge of using Social Media in the workplace

This is an interesting post on the challenges that face most people when they try to use a Social Media application/site at work. The main challenges are;

  • Firewalls (blocking access)
  • Video (being blocked)

The author provides some tips on how to approach these challenges.