New Articles

Investing in Technology to Build Knowledge-Based Companies

information technology

Investing in Technology to Build Knowledge-Based Companies

Executives understand how knowledge management as facilitating organizational processes and activities uses information technology to organize existing information. Information technology plays a crucial role in creating, retrieving, storing and applying organizational knowledge stated by Maryam Alavi and Dorothy Leidner’s MIS Quarterly review.

Executives focus on individuals as the major source of knowledge and show how followers tie together so that they can affect the sharing, storage, transfer, and apply knowledge within organizations. Executives, therefore, see these connections, and the related shared knowledge and memory, as central to the effectiveness of knowledge management.

How Technology Matters?

Executives are well versed today on information technology and usually have a fleet of followers in this department that they can depend on. Sandy Weil, a financial executive, wanted one number when he left the office that determined his value at risk. His technology team delivered and came up with one number called VAR (Value At Risk). Wiel slept much better knowing what risk he faced while running one of the largest financial organizations in the world. He was controlling operational risk and inspiring employees to follow where he leads.

Technology, as one would imagine, is often associated with information and communication dispersed within companies. Considerable alignment between information technology and the knowledge-based view connects the two to develop and disseminate knowledge throughout the organization which, in turn, is an important factor of sustainable competitive advantage.

Executives agree with Robert Grant, who states that knowledge integration is one of the main reasons for the existence of companies. Furthermore, Andrew Gold, Arvind Malhotra, and Albert Segars suggest information technology as an important resource for strategic planning for knowledge integration. Olivier Caya posits that information technology enables knowledge integration by using three possible mechanisms:

1. Impersonal

2. Personal

3. Collective

Executives can use the impersonal mechanism to enact regulations, procedures, and rules aimed at coordinating intellectual capital within organizations. Information technology disseminates protocols among members and allows them to be knowledgeable of their progress toward meeting determined milestones stated in the strategic plans.

The personal mechanism is used by executives to vertically and horizontally exchange knowledge between employees and collective mechanism is used when information technology manifests itself as a synthesizer of ideas and knowledge acquired from multiple organizational members. Thus, information technology encourages people to embark on technological facilities, such as shared electronic workspaces, to provide new ideas and possible solutions for solving organizational problems. As a result, it is viewed that information technology plays a critical role in integrating knowledge and is therefore aligned with the knowledge-based view.

Executives can use information technology as a communication mechanism manifestation and deployment and decision-aid technology. For example, Hsin-Jung Hsieh argues that communication technology provides ways to enhance interactions among members and departments within organizations. This type of technology eliminates the barriers of organizational communications while improving the extent of knowledge sharing and access for all followers at various levels of the organization.

Thus, there is a strong correlation between communication technology and social capital view that sheds light on the development of relationships within organizations to aggregate human capital into social capital so as to provide further information and opportunities for all members. This subsequently creates valuable resources for an organization as a whole.

Furthermore, decision-aid technology develops cohesive infrastructures to store and retrieve the knowledge to enable followers in creating more innovative solutions to problems and managing operational risks. Ergo, information technology supports knowledge by enabling interactions and providing more comprehensive and effective solutions to solve organizational problems.

Unleashing the Power of Knowledge in Companies

Today, technology has changed the business world ten-fold. Every day there is an easier way to process, access, and disseminate information. Technology – now referred to as Information technology – is an internal resource that increasingly facilitates organizational communication and improves the search for knowledge. When executives have people in place to manage information technology, the organization can see increased revenues, better satisfaction by employees and customers, and most importantly enhance their own effectiveness as leaders.

The social capital view supports the idea that knowledge creation is highly dependent on developing organizational communications and interactions. Information technology enables organizations to overcome space constraints in communication, and promotes the depth and range of knowledge access and sharing within companies.  More specifically, communication technologies can be employed to enhance the conversations and knowledge exchanges between organizational members. Scholars such as Andrew Gold, Arvind Malhotra and Albert Segars argue that this knowledge shared through information technology could positively contribute to knowledge integration.

I also introduced executives to what the scholar Robert Grant describes using the knowledge-based view. Highlighting knowledge integration as a major reason for the existence of a company. Knowledge sharing itself can develop more innovative climates and facilitate knowledge creation in organizations. Thus, communication technologies can play a crucial role in improving knowledge creation.

Communication technology is an internal resource that develops and integrates organizational knowledge as the most strategic factor of competitiveness. As executives use expert systems for decision-making, technology becomes a decision-aid. As mentioned earlier, decision-aid technology can be also considered as a facilitator of the knowledge creation process by providing the essential infrastructures to store and retrieve organizational knowledge.

Executives agree with Shahnawaz Muhammed who highlights major functions for information technology and explains that information technology enhances learning and sharing knowledge by providing access to knowledge, and stimulates new ideas and knowledge generation, transfers an individual’s knowledge to other members and departments, and improves knowledge capturing, storing, and accumulating, aiming at achieving organizational goals. Bringing us to the conclusion that information tech has a positive association with knowledge management performance in companies.

In Conclusion

Standing on the shoulders of scholars before us, I indicate that information technology is a major factor for knowledge management success and supports the positive impact of information technology on knowledge management performance.

For executives, this article can portray a more detailed picture of the effects of information technology on knowledge management. Many organizations still implement knowledge management initiatives without sufficient consideration of their technological infrastructures.

When executives ensure the effectiveness of knowledge management projects they increase control and lesson operational risk. I also suggest that a firm’s ability to enhance knowledge management can be highly affected when executives implement information technology. Furthermore, I suggest that scholars take these ideas and continue to conduct research using executives as the focal point so that academic scholarship can meet the needs of managerial implications at the higher echelons of organizations worldwide.

_________________________________________________________________

Mostafa Sayyadi works with senior business leaders to effectively develop innovation in companies and helps companies—from start-ups to the Fortune 100—succeed by improving the effectiveness of their leaders. He is a business book author and a long-time contributor to business publications and his work has been featured in top-flight business publications.

employees

5 EFFECTIVE WAYS TO IMPROVE EMPLOYEE PERFORMANCE

One of the things you will undoubtedly want to do as a leader is to improve the productivity of your employees. While technology has certainly made things a lot easier over time, employees are actually spending more and more time in the office and the typical workweek of 40 hours is getting rather stretched. So how can you improve the productivity of your employees and get them to save more time? Here are a few tips I learned while working at AssignmentMasters and a few other places.

Delegate

It might seem obvious that you should delegate, but a lot of leaders and managers somehow find themselves in the micromanagement trap. It’s actually quite difficult to train yourself to delegate more in practice. You will often feel that your company and business is your baby and that you want to have full control over everything that goes on at the workplace

There is nothing wrong with wanting to see everything going according to plan. It is, after all, what guarantees that no one will hijack your ideas and that your business will be successful. However, you don’t have to check every little detail of what’s going on at your company while you’re at it. You are better off delegating as many things as you can to other qualified people. If you try to do every little thing yourself, you’ll just end up wasting everyone’s time. 

The most important thing you will have to develop is trust in your employees. Start by employing only people who are well qualified at what they do, and then trust them to do it well. You will not only take a huge load off of your back, but you will also give your employees the chance to put their skills to work, to learn problem-solving, to learn how to work independently, and also to learn some important leadership skills. These skills can then later be used to grow your company even more than you could ever have managed to do yourself.

This is actually common in the most successful companies. Zipjob, for example, is very large on delegating and as a result, can even afford to have a lot of employees working remotely. 

Think back to when you first hired your employees. You saw a lot of potential in them and that’s why you brought them on board. Now, give them the opportunity to prove your judgment correct!

Tasks Should Match Skills

While we’re on the topic of delegating, it’s also important to know what to delegate to whom. You should have an intimate knowledge of all of your employees’ skills and their different levels of skill. That way, you will be more efficient in your delegation of tasks to the employees. Some are extroverted and creative, who can think on their feet and are very charming. Allowing these employees to pitch to your clients makes a lot more sense than giving that work to your more introverted and methodical employees. On the other hand, if you have any work that is big on following the rules, then you’re better off delegating that to the more shrewd and methodical employees.

At AustralianWritings, different employees with diverse skills are hired and the work delegated to them according to their skills. As a result, this company has consistently beaten its rivals.

It would be unreasonable to expect your employees to do everything perfectly. Instead, always ask yourself who is best suited to what task before you delegate the tasks. If you can’t find them among your existing employees, then you can either hire someone new or outsource that piece of work to someone else.

Communication is Key

We all know about the importance of communication. It makes the workforce productive overall. With technology, it’s even easier to communicate in the modern office. However, just because more channels of communication are available to us doesn’t mean that communication has become more efficient. Sending emails, for example, takes up more than a quarter of the average employee’s day. That’s a huge portion of the day to dedicate to sending emails!

As a leader, you should look for the most efficient way to communicate with your employees. There are numerous technologies on the market, including collaboration software and scheduling software with direct video conferencing and voice to voice features. You can use these to carry out quick meetings or a speedy paper review and communicate with your employees. That way you will make sure that no more time is used on correspondence than is necessary and your employees have more time to do what you actually pay them to do. 

Have Clear Goals

The whole essence of efficiency is that you are trying to be efficient while trying to achieve some goal. Your employees can therefore not be efficient if they do not have a goal to work toward. You need to give them something to aim for. 

If you don’t define your goals clearly enough, and make them reasonable enough to be achievable, your employees will not be as productive as they actually can. This applies both the goals of the individual tasks you assign to employees and the overall goals of the company as a unit. 

You should always let your employees know, in no unclear terms, what your expectations of them are and what kind of impact the assignments you are giving them will have on the overall goals of the company.

There is a mnemonic for the perfect kind of goal: SMART. 

-Smart

-Measurable

-Attainable

-Realistic

-Timely

Your goals should not only be clever and attainable, but also realistic, easy to measure, and achievable within the given timeline. Always check if your goals meet these criteria before you assign any tasks to employees.

Best Essays and EssayWritingLab are two companies known for this. They pin their weekly goals on the bulletin boards for all employees to see and act accordingly. Each employee is also assigned individual goals so they know what to aim for.

Train Employees

Your employees are one of your greatest assets, if not the greatest assets themselves. You should, therefore, be eager to train and develop them, making sure they get all the skills they need to do their jobs even better. While it might seem like a good idea to cut costs on training and forcing your employees to learn on the job, it has a massive potential to backfire.

Take some extra time and invest some extra money to train your employees in the skills they require to do their jobs. That way, they will be even more independent and competent with the tasks you assign them. 

To prepare training material, you can outsource the work to a writing service like AussieWritings or AssignmentMan to do it for you expediently.  

By making your employees more productive, you maximize the value you get from your business and improve your bottom line. The tips on this list are certainly not exhaustive, but they are a good starting point on the road to making your employees and company more productive. 

This guest post is contributed by Kurt Walker who is a blogger and college paper writer. In the course of his studies he developed an interest in innovative technology and likes to keep business owners informed about the latest technology to use to transform their operations. He writes for companies such as Edu Birdie, XpertWriters and uk.bestessays.com on various academic and business topics.