Uncovering Change Readiness on Knowledge Documentation in the Professional Service Context

F. H. Rusly, L. Corner James, Peter Sun

Abstract


Despite a steady progress in introducing knowledge management (KM) processes into organizations, literature reveals

increasing failures in many of these KM initiatives due to lack of commitment from employees and conflicting objectives. Implementation of KM processes can be a challenging and complex initiative, often resulting in changing conditions, procedures and processes, which affect the conventional ways of accomplishing jobs in the organizations. In order to enhance understanding on how organizations and people cope with changes resulting from the processes implementation, there is a growing interest in assessment of KM implementation from a change lens. This study proposes assessment of KM processes implementation with a specific focus from a change readiness perspective. On the basis of the extant literature, change readiness in this study is portrayed as a multidimensional construct with both hard and soft dimensions. The hard dimension includes contextual factors, which refer to capabilities to implement the processes. The soft dimension is the psychological aspect, representing an understanding about KM implementation that moulds beliefs and willingness to change, thus motivating staff members’ participation in the processes. It is proposed that both dimensions of readiness for KM should be examined in order to develop an extensive understanding about readiness for KM processes implementation. Findings from a multiple case study involving New Zealand professional service firms revealed various KM processes implemented in these firms. Nevertheless, the focus of this paper is to highlight readiness for knowledge documentation process, which from the case studies represents a complex process shaped by KM understanding, individual differences and organizational KM change context. Additionally, diverse firm sizes and the extent of information technology (IT) utilization also affect the linkages between change readiness and the knowledge documentation process.

Keywords: 

Knowledge Management Process, Knowledge Documentation, Change Management, Change Readiness, Service Firms

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