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Knowledge management: concept, types and functions
Knowledge management: concept, types and functions

In the scientific literature on economics, the concept of "knowledge management" is increasingly common. This term is widely used in research and practical work, used by enterprises in various fields of activity. Knowledge management is the management of the process of recognition, storage, application and transmission of data that can subsequently be improved and used for its intended purpose.


Knowledge management is an independent branch of the science of management. Some experts consider it one of the varieties of management, which should be used in any activity that requires competent management of information and analytical processes.

Knowledge management means having a strategy that can transform all subtypes of intellectual capital into improved labor productivity, better value for the final product and sustainable competitiveness. The concept of knowledge management implies a complexa combination consisting of several elements of organization management, including personnel records management, innovative and communication development of the enterprise using modern information technologies.

If you reveal the concept of this term from a scientific point of view, you get a kind of mix of economic disciplines, various directions, approaches and concepts. The knowledge management model itself has been used in theory and practice at all times, but little was known about it, since it was called differently. The knowledge management system is close in concept to personal marketing, consumer relations theory, reengineering, administration, enterprise personnel management, etc.

At the moment, it is important to note the emergence of new opportunities in connection with the development of information projects, the formation of local networks and the Internet. On the other hand, the management of intellectual assets is not identified with the use of new information technologies in the management environment. An important part of knowledge management is choosing the right technology for adapting, distributing and converting data.

What is included in this concept?

The role of the discipline "Knowledge Management" is difficult to overestimate, especially at the present stage, when there is a pronounced shift from internal to external development. The branch of knowledge management, associated with traditional management principles in the field of technological innovation, deals not only with scientific, technical and design developments, but also requires consideration of marketing policyenterprises, customer interactions, knowledge and experience exchange programs with partners, etc.

knowledge management

Because the main goal of knowledge management is to strengthen market positions and improve competitiveness, this industry covers several areas at once. The structure of this concept includes the following elements:

  • formation of new knowledge;
  • stimulating the growth of information;
  • filtering meaningful data coming from outside;
  • using proven and searching for new sources of reliable information;
  • storage, distribution, processing and increasing the availability of knowledge;
  • dissemination and exchange of information, primarily within the enterprise;
  • integrating data into production processes;
  • incorporating insights into important decisions;
  • content of information in the finished product, service, documents, software, etc.;
  • data protection rating.

Thus, in order to manage information, several conditions are required at once, since this industry is not autonomous and does not exist on its own. The knowledge management process plays an important role in shaping the development strategy of any organization. This tool combines and codifies incoming information, distributes it in the right areas and uses it for its intended purpose. In this model of organization management, innovation and learning management takes place.

In another interpretationmanaging knowledge means influencing the cost of production, making it more profitable, and the main role in its formation should be played by the organization's intangible assets. Maintaining and developing the popularity of the brand as an indicator of the prestige of the company is a difficult task that requires a thorough approach. Without the desire to convert knowledge into value, it is almost impossible to take a business to a new level. It is information management that can change the way of thinking and help move away from outdated forms of enterprise development.

Development history

Knowledge management swept the business of Western Europe, USA, China several decades ago. The popularity of this direction indicates how significant it is considered in the global economy. Knowledge management standards have reached Russia. And although this information and economic tool has been used by domestic enterprises relatively recently, we can already conclude that this area is in demand in our country.

The first mention of the management of knowledge and skills can be found in the works of Plato, dated to the 4th century BC. Until the middle of the last century, this scientific direction did not develop in any way, it was in a “sleeping” mode. Interest in knowledge management was prompted by repeated episodes of the global crisis and the radical changes in the forms and methods of doing business that became its consequences. Over time, major players in the business sector came to the conclusion that it is information that is the main resource for economic development andprosperity. All business processes are based on industry knowledge, which increases its share in the formation of the cost of finished products.

knowledge management standards

In fact, all modern branches of the economy that have emerged and spread widely over the past decades are based on knowledge management. The development of pharmaceuticals, genetic engineering, chemical industry and other areas involves not only the production of finished products, but also the dissemination of knowledge about new properties of chemicals, methods for their research, patent protection and further promotion.

It is worth noting the industries that do not produce any consumer goods. Their activity consists in providing information in various ways - filming films, TV series, providing medical and educational services, conducting trainings, seminars, as well as industries where products are mostly the results of information processing (development of architectural projects, computer programs, creation of digital technology). etc.).

Conditions for effective management

Management of the information environment is one of the defining activities of the enterprise in unstable conditions of the external economy. It allows you to adhere to an integrating approach to the introduction of modern and effective technologies in the field of marketing, innovative projects, and PR management. Information management implies a symbiotic relationship between production and implementation aspects. Knowledge Management- this is a constant work on intellectual capital, moreover, on all its varieties and on each form separately. It provides the necessary combination of human and organizational capital to improve consumer demand.

A well-chosen knowledge management technology will achieve the following results:

  • create a well-coordinated technological infrastructure that will make it possible to disseminate accumulated knowledge and gain the necessary experience;
  • create a culture of transferring knowledge and skills from previous employees within the enterprise and when interacting with partner companies;
  • organize a continuous system of training and advanced training of personnel.

Individual competence of staff

For a complete knowledge management, this element is of particular importance. One of the standard and well-known methods for improving the individual performance of employees are trainings, seminars, other types of training, as well as rotation in personnel. The personal competence of employees can be increased by implementing various marketing techniques through the active use of knowledge, information from customers, buyers, development of local databases and feedback tools.

knowledge of the basics of management

Some components of individual competence are used to grow organizational capital. This concept means the creation of a few creative teams, the division of personnel into groups,which helps to get a more effective use of individual competence by transforming it into collective skills. In the concept of knowledge management, the formation of information technology systems of an enterprise aims to strengthen the interaction of various elements of personal competence and give individual assets an organizational unifying form.

Knowledge management functions

In general, information management is an expression of a multifaceted form of activity that can be considered both from the point of view of economics and business, information technology and programming, and the humanities (psychology, sociology). In this discipline, the components of personnel management, advertising, the overall development of the organization, the introduction of innovative systems, etc. are successfully integrated. Knowledge management is the result of the interaction of all of the above industries. The main functions of knowledge management are:

  • transforming information to improve the efficiency of the organization's practices;
  • continuous learning, gaining experience and skills to implement the company's key development strategy;
  • create a customer database and use knowledge to attract new customers and thus improve sales;
  • development of a stable sales system;
  • use of the company's intellectual capital (human, organizational, consumer);
  • improving returns on any intangible assets, spreading the results todeveloping projects;
  • creating conditions for consolidating existing knowledge and supporting specific innovative projects.
organization knowledge management

How knowledge is formed

When deciding to implement an information management system in your enterprise, you first need to determine what it is required for and what result it will help to achieve. You can't do knowledge management just because competitors do it. The knowledge management system follows from the unified strategic plans and goals of the organization, should be associated with planning in various areas of activity. Information management contributes to the effective generation and development of original and useful ideas.

In order for the process of using knowledge to bring the expected result, it is necessary to formulate queries correctly. It must be created in such a way that it can later be codified for sending if necessary. Given the structure of the request, you should create a catalog for each part of it and determine the purpose of use.

For effective knowledge management of an organization, an important role is played by the presence of feedback from the consumer, who must be able to correctly formulate a request and correctly enter information. Software methods should guarantee the provision of fast search, decoding and issuance of information, and, if necessary, protect it, make it confidential.

In the course of designing computer programs to control the data transfer process, it is necessary to define a standard form andprovide information upon request. Knowledge management is based on the principle of ensuring the revision and approval of information and data in such a way that unnecessary or outdated data is removed or corrected in time, becoming in demand and relevant.

concept of knowledge management

Ways to motivate employees

Knowledge of the basics of management plays a crucial role in the processes of creating and distributing information, however, no organization is able to work productively and efficiently without coordinated actions from the administrative level.

At the stage of development and implementation of the information management system, the role of the administrator should be assumed by the team that finances this project and monitors the progress of the work. Ideally, you should immediately identify the responsible official - usually the person who deals with the technology and software. In order for the process of implementing an information management system to proceed successfully, you will need:

  • formally appoint an administrator;
  • give him functional competence in relation to subordinate employees;
  • define monitoring rules;
  • develop performance evaluation criteria;
  • introduce methods that determine the amount of intellectual capital.

When creating a knowledge management strategy in an organization, it is important to determine how culture changes are associated with mechanisms to motivate employees to carry out development workinformation system and its fruitful use in the further activities of the enterprise.

Knowledge management implies the desire to multiply the available information, striving to achieve a synergistic effect and requiring higher motivation than a monetary fee. For effective motivation, various methods of motivation are used that contribute to self-realization.

Personnel development and career growth is the first motivational tool that management provides to subordinates. Using any method of knowledge management, employees get almost limitless opportunities for promotion and gaining valuable experience in a particular area. In this case, the staff can be offered special internal training courses to improve their qualifications and an examination system, including online. It is important to ensure that employees have constant access to information and allocate additional resources so that they have the opportunity to receive education during working hours.

Another element of staff motivation is the guarantee of demand. Since the learning process requires costs, employees must know that these costs are planned and budgeted for by the enterprise, and therefore their use in given conditions is encouraged, otherwise there will be no one to support the knowledge management system. For the use of their own knowledge in information management, the employee must be rewarded, his invention must be patented or acquired by the company on contractual terms set forth in the employment agreement. Otherwisethe reward loses its motivational component and becomes inappropriate.

knowledge management system

An equally strong motivating factor is recognition. The functions of knowledge management involve the ability of employees to express themselves, share their opinions and get acquainted with criticism. Although often people are reluctant to give their own knowledge for the benefit of the public, if they do not understand what reward they can receive for this. In this context, the organization of scientific discussion clubs and bonus encouragement of active participation in them will become an effective tool for the development of knowledge management. Company management must ensure that external publications and official recognitions are supported. A useful motivational element is the ability to access the Internet. The introduction of an information management system is usually the responsibility of a manager involved in the selection and training of personnel.

Since the educational process requires certain costs and resources, it must be constantly under the control of the company's administration. Management should be able to evaluate the effectiveness of the means used and the benefits obtained from knowledge management, monitor and analyze the activities of employees in this direction. Developing, implementing and optimizing an information management system will not immediately bring profit - it will take time. There is no need to give up management management, as the first results will be achieved only after some time.

Nuances of system implementation

Every organization that has discovered the feasibility of using an information management system has had to face a number of difficulties. The process of introducing a management mechanism usually takes several years. If we take as a basis the data of various studies on the actual implementation of knowledge management in the activities of consulting enterprises, we can highlight the main problematic points that companies had to face in the process.

The most common problem is the inability to identify the responsible person. Regardless of the type of knowledge management, organizations had to spend a lot of time on staff training. It is important to understand that this investment will pay off with profit only in the long term. In addition, the implementation problem may be related to the fact that the top management of the company does not find information management appropriate, and therefore is not ready to take the necessary steps to implement it.

Creates difficulties in the development of knowledge management and lack of remuneration, lack of recognition. Rewarding plays a huge role and makes it important to transform individual work into teamwork.

knowledge management functions

Thus, the main problem in the introduction of information management is the lack of a specific goal setting and the lack of a reasonable approach in wasting available resources. Opinion polls conducted in the United States at the end of the last century showed that the majority of respondents are consideredthe main obstacle in improving the information management system is the culture of the organization. Knowledge management, as a new milestone in the activities of companies aimed at the accumulation and effective use of intellectual assets, should be the main tool for strengthening their competitiveness and market positions.


The main strategy of knowledge management (management) is aimed at creating a new value of the products, people and processes being sold through the rational formation and implementation of information data in the enterprise development strategy. The primary task is to get a rational return on the use of spent resources, develop more effective innovative technologies, improve customer service mechanisms, reduce losses from inactive intellectual capital.

The conceptual provisions of knowledge management can be applied not only in trade and production companies, but also in organizations of a budgetary type, non-profit and public associations. In addition, most non-profit companies are directly related to information management. Their activities are based precisely on the creation, regulation, dissemination and processing of various information and data flows. The knowledge management model at the present stage is also used by the authorities.

If we consider the potential rationality of information management from a theoretical point of view, it may seem high. But, despite the effectiveness of this component of the management process, its application topractice leads to a number of difficulties. This area has received little attention in the domestic literature so far. There is not enough experience in applying the knowledge management system in practice. In public administrations, information management technologies are used more often than in commercial companies, but even they still do not pay enough attention to such an important aspect of development as training the organization's personnel.

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