Knowledge Management in Information Technology The Jamaican

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					     Knowledge Management in
      Information Technology:
The Jamaican Help Desk & Technical
          Support Arena

            Dr. George Stewart
           University of the West Indies
    Presentation Overview

• Knowledge & Knowledge types
• Knowledge Management (KM) & KMS
• Why is Knowledge & KM Important?
• Knowledge Mobility, Retention & Sharing
• KM in Help Desk/Technical Support
• Research Model, Data Analysis & Results
• Implications for the Findings
• Questions & Answers
        What is Knowledge?

• Knowledge has been defined philosophically as
  justified true belief (Huber, 1991; Nonaka, 1994)
• Knowledge is created in the mind of an individual
  (Grant, 1996; Nonaka, 1994)

• Knowledge can be viewed from a number of
  perspectives, namely as (i) an object, (ii) a state of
  mind, (iii) a process, (iv) a condition of having
  access to information, or (v) a capability (Alavi &
  Leidner, 2001)

• Knowledge has been principally defined in terms of
  (a) a hierarchical structure of data, information and
  knowledge, and (b) the process of knowing (Shin, et
  al., 2001)
Knowledge Types




    Adapted from Alavi & Leidner (2001)
Knowledge Conversion Processes




    Adopted from Nonaka and Takeuchi (1995)
Knowledge Management




     Adopted from Shin et al. (2001)
Knowledge Management




                              Knowledge Contribution


     Adopted from Shin et al. (2001)
       Knowledge Management Systems

• KMS are a class of information systems
  specifically designed to facilitate the
  management of an organization’s knowledge
  (Alavi & Leidner, 2001)

• What is stored in KMS, knowledge or
  information?
   “what companies actually manage under the
    banner of knowledge management is a mix
    of knowledge, information and unrefined
    data” (Grover & Davenport, 2001, p.7)
            Is KM a new management fad?

Attrition:
                                                   Reactive
   Imminent                                         Mode
      • Retirement
      • Resignation      Recognition of        Initiation of the
                         knowledge as a        knowledge
   Sudden                valuable resource     retention effort
    • Tragic loss
    • Termination




                                             Possibilities:
                         Initiation of the     • Minimize the
     Recognition of      knowledge             impact of attrition
     knowledge as a      retention effort      • Minimize impact of
     valuable resource   (usually embedded     strategic decisions,
                         in the work           e.g. downsizing
                         processes)            • Training and
Proactive                                      development
  Mode
      Why is Knowledge & KM Important?

“Your most valuable assets walk out of your office every evening.
       What if they don’t come back the next morning?”
  Why is Knowledge & KM Important?

The knowledge that creates value is
embedded in the goods, services
and/or their production processes.
  Why is Knowledge & KM Important?

The knowledge that creates value is
embedded in the goods, services
and/or their production processes.
      Knowledge Mobility

Firms need to retain the knowledge that make
their value creation processes work, they have to
manage their organizational knowledge just like
they have to manage other resources
  • High levels of staff turn-over & employee
    mobility leads to knowledge mobility (Randel &
    Ranft, 2007; Pearce & Randel, 2004)


  • High staff turn-over is “the disease of
    Intellectual Capital” (Melcrum, 2003)
         Knowledge Retention

• Firms needed to develop strategies for
  organizational knowledge retention (e.g. Hansen et
  al., 1999)

• In some cases the use of non-human knowledge
  repositories (e.g. a KMS) is an option
• The knowledge repositories would be the
  permanent property of the firm
      Knowledge Retention

• Employees would contribute their job
  knowledge to these repositories
• It is very challenging to develop an objective
  compensation scheme for knowledge
  contribution (Bartol & Srivastava, 2002),
• Many organizations don’t directly offer
  compensation for knowledge contribution
• And hence the concern for “What” motivates
  contribution to the knowledge repositories of
  these organizations
           Knowledge Sharing Modes

Knowledge sharing has
been conceptualized as a
two-actor model of a
source and a recipient (e.g.
Ko, et al., 2005; Lin, et al., 2005)

Knowledge Contribution is
defined as “an employee’s
non-perfunctory
contribution of both tacit
and explicit knowledge to
an electronic repository of
their employing
organization ”


                          Adopted from Stewart (2008)
      KM in Help Desk/Technical Support

• The Help Desk and Technical Support domains
  have been used as empirical environments for
  investigating knowledge management and
  knowledge repositories (e.g. Bobrow & Whalen, 2002;
  Das, 2003; El Sawy & Bowles, 1997; Gray & Durcikova, 2005)

• The use of knowledge repositories in Help Desk
  and Technical Support environments have
  become relatively common place (Gans, et al.,
  2003)
        Research Questions

1. Does Commitment to the Organization influence the Intention to
   Contribute Knowledge, and actual Knowledge Contribution to an
   electronic repository?
2. Does Organizational Climate influence the Intention to Contribute
   Knowledge, and actual Knowledge Contribution to an electronic
   repository?
3. Does Top Management Support influence the Intention to Contribute
   Knowledge, and actual Knowledge Contribution to an electronic
   repository?
4. Does Social Inclusion influence the Intention to Contribute Knowledge,
   and actual Knowledge Contribution to an electronic repository?
5. Does Knowledge Self-efficacy influence the Intention to Contribute
   Knowledge, and actual Knowledge Contribution to an electronic
   repository?
6. Does the Perceived Ease of Use of the repository influence the Intention to
   Contribute Knowledge, and actual Knowledge Contribution to an
   electronic repository?
        Research Model

Individuals can only be encouraged and facilitated to share their knowledge
(Gibbert & Krause, 2002), i.e. they can’t be forced to share their knowledge
Demographics




               20 of 37 Jamaican firms participated
               72 of 119 respondents - 60% response rate
  Data Analysis using PLS

                                                  Support found:
  H5a***
                                                  *** p=0.001

                            H8b**                 ** p=0.01
                                                  *        p=0.05
H2***      H3**



H11*               H10***

                             H13*
                                                             = 0.05, sample size N = 72
 H12*
           H7a**                                   2
                                                              INCK          KNCT
                                      Effect Size f          2.164          1.008
                                    Number of Predictor        5              3
                                        Variables
                                    Achieved Statistical     1.000          1.000
                                       Power (1 - )
Summary of Hypotheses & Results
       Contribution to Theory

Six new relationships suggested for addition to the
nomological network of Knowledge Management:
 • Perceived Ease of Use impacting Knowledge
   Contribution moderated by Knowledge Sharing Cost
 • Extrinsic Motivation impacting the Intention to Contribute
   Knowledge moderated by Top Management Support
 • Organizational Climate impacting the Intention to
   Contribute Knowledge moderated by Top Management
   Support
 • Organizational Commitment impacting the Intention to
   Contribute Knowledge
 • Social Inclusion impacting Organizational Commitment
 • Knowledge Self-efficacy impacting Knowledge
   Contribution
        Contribution to Practice

The findings suggest that management can improve the
possibility of a successful KMS implementation by:
• Involving likely contributors in the selection process of the KMS
  to address ease of use issues early
• Implementing a carefully developed compensation scheme
  for contributions to the KMS, to offset “contribution costs”
• Creating an organizational climate that is characterized by
  fairness and just actions
• Encouraging (inclusive) social interactions within and outside
  of working hours, as it builds commitment to the organization
  and by extension the willingness to share for the benefit of the
  organization
• Creating training opportunities for likely contributors, as it builds
  their confidence in what they know, and their willingness to
  share
     Future Research

• Use demographic variables as control/moderator
  variables in future analyses (Amabile et al., 1994;
  Venkatesh et al., 2003)

• Investigate the research model in other cultures
  and societies, as these differing contexts have
  been suggested as influential factors to
  knowledge contribution (Bock et al., 2005)
• Investigate barriers such as time and space,
  cognitive barriers to communication, structural
  barriers – authority and status hierarchies that
  have been suggested to impede knowledge
  contribution (Bock et al., 2005)
Thanks for Listening …..




                           ….. Questions?