Stuff we do

Information and Knowledge Retention

A process to mitigate risk? Now that’s a good idea…

The constant flow of people leaving and joining an organisation is one we are all used to. Valued employees retire and newcomers find themselves awash in a sea of information for which they are now responsible.

The more experience and expertise the leaver has, the harder it is for their replacement to start their role. All organisations have their specialists and people who are critical to supplying the products to the customer. Their knowledge may be product based or they may be a key contact with your valued customers. Either way, they play a critical role.

If your organisation has robust processes to manage this knowledge and information transfer then great, if not, then do consider how this type of activity can help.

Information and Knowledge Retention and Transfer follows a 6 stage process:

  1. First we identify with you where your high-risk information and knowledge lies.
  2. Secondly we identify where in the business this information is used and who are the customers for the expertise.
  3. Thirdly we gather this information by a process of interviews, workshops, sifting through emails and folders.
  4. The fourth stage can be thought of as a sanity check. Here we review all the information and knowledge gathered with the person’s peers, their managers and the customers using workshops and collaborative sessions.
  5. The fifth stage is the handover to the recipient. The gathered information forms the basis of an action plan to ensure that the transfer process occurs.
  6. The sixth stage monitors the handover and ensures that the change over is a smooth as possible.

Above all, Information and Knowledge Retention is all about helping you to work more effectively.

By tom
Published: September 19, 2010

Social Network Analysis

What do a jigsaw and an organisation have in common?

We all know that key expertise and information resides in various places across the organisation. What would seem a well-ordered and structured organisation on the surface often hides an informal structure of collaboration. Knowing who to turn to and where to find that crucial key to the puzzle is a learning process that takes time.

Social Network Analysis is an established technique that helps you to understand and visualise the informal and formal flows of information and knowledge. We provide concrete evidence of what is happening independently of the organisational structure and this then helps you to manage these interactions. There are five steps in the SNA process:

  1. Step one is the exploratory stage. Here we analyse the organisation or project goals, identify the key players, identify who will participate and what we expect to achieve.
  2. Step two is all about gathering data. Social Network Analysis is a data intensive process and the more targeted the data we gather at this stage, then the more accurate the results will be. Typical methods of gathering data include surveys, interviews and workshops.
  3. Step three is the analysis and number crunching. By now we will really understand the problem and can work with you to drive the analysis in the right way. We use industry standard SNA tools such as UCINet and NodeXL.
  4. The fourth stage is feedback and reporting. SNA produces wonderful network diagrams that look great in PowerPoint, yet to just provide these would miss out on all the insight available. We will tailor the report to what you require and extract as much value as possible from the results.
  5. The fifth stage is action. Armed with evidence that you need to change team structures or maybe improve how people find information. we work with you to suggest what can be put in place and if required, help you to instigate these changes.

If you have the feeling that a project or organisation needs to be understood a bit better, then Social Network Analysis can help.

By tom
Published: September 15, 2010