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3 Reasons KM Is Going to Get More Important in 2015

Looking back at the past year, knowledge management feels reinvigorated and seems to be gaining traction across industries. Why the increased interest? There are many reasons, but here are my top 3 contenders:

  1. Complexity amplifies the business case for knowledge management. As work becomes more multifaceted and faster paced, an increasing number of organizations view a proactive strategy to manage knowledge as a business imperative.
  2. It’s harder to rely on the expert in the corner. Organizations that used to store critical knowledge in the heads of long-tenured employees are recognizing that this knowledge should be documented and shared. This is partly because complex, global work demands networked and always-available knowledge, but the increasing rarity of people who spend their whole lives with one employer also plays a part.
  3. It pays (literally and figuratively) to define collaboration broadly and encourage it aggressively. From crowdsourcing to open innovation to enterprise social media, organizations are embracing the benefits of soliciting input from large, diverse teams and getting people to work together in new ways. (Which is good, because that’s the modus operandi for many Millennials anyway.)

Given all this, I think 2015 is poised to bring further attention to knowledge management programs and tools. APQC is running its 2015 Knowledge Management Priorities Survey through January 16, so please weigh in on what you’re seeing at your organization. It’s a quick survey, and everyone who participates will get a report summarizing the results. We’ll also post some highlights from the results here.

The survey is part of a larger project to look at where experts and practitioners think knowledge management is headed, so if you have credentials and a strong point of view about the future of KM, please get in touch with me at ltrees@apqc.org to be interviewed. We’ll be talking to as many different voices as possible and releasing the results over the next few months.