Knowledge Management Capability Assessment Tool

4-6 hours
1 week
A comprehensive capability assessment

The Knowledge Management Capability Assessment Tool (KM CAT) looks at everything from your KM strategy to how KM is funded, the governance in place, the processes and approaches, the technology, and the sophistication of your measures. It measures your KM program against APQC’s Levels of Maturity, a five-step maturity model for KM programs. Your results will reveal the overall maturity rating for your KM program, as well as your maturity rating in each of the 12 component areas, such as measurement, change management, and IT; providing you with more meaningful, actionable content that will support your continued journey toward knowledge management excellence and business impact.

In the assessment tool, you'll find that each characteristic of KM maturity has a question with pre-defined answer options. You simply select the answer option that best fits your current state. You simply select the answer option that best fits your current state. You also have the ability to provide notes/comments to justify your responses. APQC will validate your responses and provide you with an assessment report.

KM CAT At a Glance

If you have questions, we’re happy to help. Call us at +1-713-681-4020 or email us at [email protected].

This assessment will help you understand where your biggest gaps are and where you need to focus your attention in order to advance the goals of your KM effort. An APQC representative will also sit down with you to talk about your ranking and help you figure out the next steps for progression.

Submitting Your Assessment

All submissions to this assessment must be collected using APQC's easy-to-use pdf data collection form. This PDF data collection tool consist of the survey itself and any relevant information needed to understand the survey and complete the data collection form. The consolidated data collection tool is intended to simplify the collection of data within your organization.

Once you have completed the data collection form, click the submit button in the tool or upload the file using APQC's secure file upload tool at APQC analysts will immediately begin validation of your submission and contact you if any questions need to be addressed before finalizing your assessment results report. The report will include detailed views of your assessment results and comparisons to other organization’s KM maturity.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Getting Started

APQC’s Knowledge Management Capability Assessment Tool evaluates the maturity of an organization’s KM efforts. Launched in 2007, the assessment aligns to APQC’s Levels of Knowledge Management Maturity℠ to assess competency across twelve KM capability areas. The assessment offers several benefits such as:

  • the ability to assess the maturity of current KM efforts;
  • use of the assessment results to inform KM strategies, plans, and budgets;
  • the chance to communicate the KM vision, internally and externally;
  • the opportunity to develop business cases for investment;
  • the potential to measure KM progress using key performance indicators; and
  • the opportunity to benchmark and learn from other organizations.

Yes. Here is a static version of the assessment. This version is only to be used as a preview. Please contact us to start the assessment.

The KM Capability Assessment Tool is available to APQC members as part of their membership benefits. It is complimentary to all APQC enterprise, KM, and professional services firm members. Members may submit one complimentary assessment per organization per membership year. This date is not the same as the membership renewal date; this date is 12 months from the date of your organization’s previous submission of the KMCAT. There is a fee to submit multiple assessments.

Nonmembers can also take the assessment for a fee. To learn more, please contact us at

Ask yourself, “Why are we taking this assessment? What insights are we looking to gain from it? What actions will we take with the information?” After you’ve determined the answers to these questions, we suggest the following approach.

  • Identify the scope for the assessment. When we say scope, we mean the areas the organization will assess to determine the effectiveness of KM strategies, resources, processes, approaches, and tools.
  • Determine which stakeholders will provide input. Completing the Knowledge Management Capability Assessment Tool requires feedback from the business about the effectiveness and use of KM strategies, resources, processes, approaches, and tools.
  • Conduct meetings to collect and consolidate answers for the assessment. The key to an accurate assessment is to have agreement and consensus about who, what, when, where, and how KM strategies, resources, processes, approaches, and tools have been deployed in your organization.


The Knowledge Management Capability Assessment Tool is designed for all or any part of an organization to assess its KM maturity. When determining which parts of your organization should complete the assessment, please consider your responses to the following questions.

  • In what parts of your organization have you identified the need for KM strategies, resources, processes, approaches, and tools?
  • In what parts of your organization have you deployed existing KM strategies, resources, processes, approaches, and tools?

For example, at the enterprise-level, the Knowledge Management Capability Assessment Tool assesses the KM maturity across the breadth of your organization. Perhaps senior leadership wants to identify where resources should be applied to assure knowledge retention. Perhaps the KM core team wants to develop new approaches to meet the needs of two core departments, which, in turn, helps the organization meets its objectives. These two examples suggest that the organization should be evaluated holistically, engaging the input from key stakeholders located across the organization.

If KM is not applied at the enterprise level but is applied to a specific business unit or other area of business, the Knowledge Management Capability Assessment Tool can still be used. Instead of looking for stakeholders through the business, the business unit should engage key stakeholders within to ensure that all valid inputs have been provided.

The Knowledge Management Capability Assessment Tool is an analysis of the current maturity of an organization’s KM capabilities and efforts. To complete the assessment appropriately, we recommend the following actions.

  • Please ensure that the demographics information on page 5 is filled out in its entirety. This information is used to generate peer group data cuts based on your industry, geographic location, and revenue.
  • The assessment is organized into 12 sections – one per capability area. You will need to respond to all the questions for an accurate report.
  • You should select the response from those provided that most accurately reflects the current state at your organization. If you are not sure of the correct response, always select the lesser option.  
  • Space is provided for you to give any additional details that support your response to the question asked. Click on the “N” button in the right margin of the assessment tool to open the notes area & type the information.

To access the KM capability assessment tool, please click here.

Upon completion of your assessment, click the “Submit Assessment” button found on pages 4 and 33 in the tool. Other options for submitting your completed assessment include:

  • Email your completed assessment to [email protected] or
  • Send your completed assessment to your APQC Member Success Manager.

Upon receipt of your completed assessment, we will confirm receipt via email within 24 hours or less. Next, the Knowledge Management Capability Assessment Tool product manager and KM subject matter expert (SME) will initiate the validation process. During this process, the product manager or SME may contact you if any clarification of your responses is needed.

After validation step is complete, the final report is generated and sent to participants via email within 48 to 72 hours.

The report includes APQC’s evaluation of the maturity of your organization’s KM capabilities across the twelve capability areas. The report provides aggregated results of all Knowledge Management Capability Assessment Tool participants and top performers in an organization’s industry, geographic location, and revenue range. The information provided is beneficial to assess where your organization should focus its efforts over the next 12 to 18 months.

The standard assessment report includes:

  • Results Summary: A heatmap depiction of the maturity level in each of the 12 KM capability areas, a bar graph of the results, and a table listing the numeric maturity level in those same areas.
  • Comparison: Bar graphs show your organization’s results compared to blinded, aggregated results of other assessment participants.
  • Demographics: Charts showing the aggregated demographics of all participants by industry, revenue, and geography.
  • Assessment Responses: A detailed view of your organization’s responses to the assessment questions as well as the aggregate responses of all other participants.

In addition to the standard report, there is an option to schedule a one-hour discussion with the participants and APQC’s KM team in order to examine the results, discuss any questions, and talk about next steps for the participants. Typically, that includes areas to pursue to accelerate your organization’s maturity within a particular capability.


We typically recommend reviewing the capability areas that were not achieved to understand where the gaps are. The KM core team (and senior leadership) should determine whether there is value in achieving a certain maturity in each capability area. Each organization is different and there are some capabilities that may not be a good fit for a particular organization. Once this decision has been made, determine how each capability would look within your organization and build the capability.

After reviewing your Knowledge Management Capability Assessment Tool results, if you still have questions, or if you want further help, we strongly recommend that you engage our Advisory Services’ group at APQC. Our expertise can be leveraged to accelerate KM maturity for your organization. Moreover, our experts share their knowledge to enable organizations to continue developing their capabilities well after working with APQC.

For more information about the Advisory Services group, please contact your Member Success Manager directly.

Member organizations are eligible for a discount on supplementary reports. Nonmember organizations must pay a fee for each additional report.

If you have questions, we’re happy to help. Call us at +1-713-681-4020 or email us at [email protected].