Knowledge Management Systems
Knowledge Management Systems
Case Study 2: AService
Australian Service Consultancy (commonly referred to as AService) is an Australian Information Technology (IT) consultancy established in February 2010 upon the merger of two IT companies Divergent and Trim Design. AService was the company to adopt the new name, representing both companies with a new identity and legal personality. Aservice is a growing business and staff numbers have increased from 67 to 104 in the last two years thanks to winning many major IT contracts.
The main business functions of the AService include consulting services, systems integration and solutions, integration of Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) solutions, implementation of application solutions, as well as subcontracting solutions for providing technical support to users and application maintenance and outsourcing services and operation of professional processes. AService is focused on the business sectors, namely: Financial services; Services, transportation, and utilities; Public sector; Industry; Telecommunication and media, and Retail.
Since its establishment, AService has also built its capability on providing brand development, and full-service advertising. All these company business functions involve an intensive utilisation of knowledge. AService realised that a lot of the knowledge created by its employees was not being appropriately captured and was therefore not fully utilised. This is notably true for its consultancy services related to systems integration and solutions, ERP solutions, and implementation of application solutions which are a rich source of knowledge. The experience of information systems designers, software developers, and creative staff is not systematically captured and shared. Often, the knowledge stays with the individuals and is not disseminated. In consultancy projects, the failures in contracts and projects were not translated adequately into lessons learned. As a result, mistakes were often repeated in projects. New knowledge, experience and practices in marketing, advertising, designing, and creating were neither regularly updated nor shared. A lot of time was wasted in collecting information/knowledge which already existed in the organisation. In essence, the company did not capitalise on its knowledge assets.
AService identified several key knowledge needs:
- Knowledge is our business. We are ‘honest brokers’ of key knowledge for implementing products, systems, and services, sharing good practice and effecting improvement and innovation in the analysis, design, implementation, and delivery of a range of IT services in many business sectors across Australia. We need better ways of doing our business.
- We need to get the best value from knowledge as providing services and share this within our company (AService) and our partners.
- We need improved personal communication among staff, particularly in terms of sharing experience.
- Through training and skill upgrading programs, new skills and domain knowledge need to be passed on to our staff.
Recognising the importance of Knowledge Management (KM) in developing the company’s competitive advantage, the senior management of AService decided to implement a KM initiative with the main focus on people, business processes, and technology.
Please note: AService, Divergent and Trim Design are fictitious entities.
Assignment 2 Report (in groups 3-4 students)
Assignment 2 Details
Students will work in groups (3-4 students) to design an intervention to improve the situation described in one of the case studies for Assignment 1 using KM principles, practices, methods and tools. This assignment builds on the analysis undertaken in assignment 1. Students are required to describe the architectural model(s) used for the design and the reasons for the selection. Students should critically analyse models used in their design of a contemporary KM solution.
The sorts of questions you should seek to answer are:
- How would the knowledge flow through your designed solution?
- Are there any existing knowledge assets or solutions that may be part of the system?
- What are the candidate techniques that can be used?
- What is the proposed KMS? – you may give it a name.
- What functions or processes are required to enable the system?
- Who would manage the KMS?
- What infrastructure, tools, equipment or techniques are required to address the problem?
- What are changes required to policy, procedures, attitudes, organisational structure or physical location to be made to improve the way the organisation operates?
- How would the organisation know if the intervention produced benefits and what they were?
(Please note: This list is not a content page for your assignment!)
Report – Details of deliverables
For the assignment 2 report, you will prepare – an MS Word Document.
Make sure that:
- You use clear headings for each part of your document.
- Your responses are innovative.
- You have researched and used relevant reference materials on knowledge management systems and appropriately referenced them.
- Your report is useful for its purpose and its readers.
- Your report is professional, well set out within the word limit.
- Please provide an assignment cover sheet, including word count.
- Please use an appropriate referencing style.
- Only one person in each group will submit their group work via the teaching site in UCLearn (Canvas).