In last month’s article, I discussed how to apply risk management tools to a strategic technology plan. This month, I will discuss the final layer of technology planning: incorporating knowledge management (KM) tools to the plan. KM can have varied meaning among departments looking to incorporate the discipline. For many, simply identifying good content for re-use is sufficient. Other departments may seek to fully automate routine activities or build sophisticated systems to manage business decisions or processes.
In the context of a strategic technology plan, applying KM tools means identifying ways in which the department can classify, archive, mine and use the knowledge inherent within the department’s systems. This could entail making small configuration changes to the technology already within the plan. Or, the department may need to augment the current tool set with additional technologies.
5. Current awareness. Although many lawyers subscribe to newsletters, review industry or trade journals, monitor legislative and regulatory activity, or follow trusted bloggers, there is certainly more information available than most individuals have the time to follow. Current awareness tools help staff identify external information relevant to them in a timely and organized manner. One of the most popular approaches is to use news aggregators and RSS feeds to identify and organize relevant external content. Some departments, however, have taken the idea further; they store the content alongside summaries, opinions or analyses and may even use workflow tools to disseminate the information to other parts of the organization.