Enablers and Inhibitors to Knowledge Management

Enabling organisations to capture, portion, and use corporate experience and know-how of people is emerging as cardinal to viing in the cognition economic system. There is a turning acknowledgment in the concern community about the importance of cognition direction. As a consequence, there is turning enthusiasm and activity centered on cognition direction. Some organisations have taken enterprises to understand and pull off this critical resource. But, in malice of these enterprises, several organisations peculiarly the Small and Medium Enterprises still have non approached cognition direction activity officially or intentionally. The cause for this sluggishness towards knowledge direction could be that most organisations are still fighting to grok the cognition direction construct. The ground for this confusion may be attributed to a spread between the emerging construct of cognition direction and the deficiency of understanding about it. To bridge the spread, the cardinal issue of placing outstanding features of cognition direction phenomena needs to be addressed. The cardinal thesis is that enablers of the cognition direction paradigm frequently unravel inhibitors in accommodating and germinating cognition direction systems for concern environments that are characterized by high uncertainness and extremist discontinuous alteration. This paper therefore, explores by showing a hierarchal theoretical account the enablers, inhibitors and identifies critical success factors necessary for a successful cognition direction enterprise. The paper uses the Analytic Hierarchy Process ( AHP ) method to determine the comparative importance of the influential factors towards a successful Knowledge Management execution.

Keywords: Knowledge Management Systems, Critical Success Factors, Analytic Hierarchy Process

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1. Introduction

The information epoch has caused endeavors to recognize the displacement from resource economic system of commanding land, machines, mills, natural stuffs, and labour forces to the cognition economic system of making concern value through use of intangible cognition. This has caused “ knowledge direction ” to be of important importance and it has grabbed people ‘s attending and generated important treatments both in the academe and industry.

The true creative activity of concern value today chiefly comes from cognition and its direction. Knowledge is critical in obtaining competitory advantage within an endeavor ( Sang and Hong, 2002 ) , endeavors should see the cognition to be a critical resource and purchase it judiciously ( Gupta et al. , 2000 ; Liebowitz, 2003 ) .

To ease the cognition accretion procedure, enterprises must promote employees to portion their experience and cognition with others meanwhile roll uping their cognition as an organisational plus. Therefore, the activities of cognition direction should enable the creative activity, communicating, and application of cognition ; and they should drive the capableness of making and retaining a greater value onto the nucleus concern competences ( Tiwana, 2001 ) . However, there are concerns about enablers and inhibitors to implementing cognition direction for endeavors.

In the procedure of transporting out cognition direction, organisations face changing conditions of corporate civilization, workflow procedures, and integrating of all the employees ‘ cognition. They besides need strong support from top direction, because it is possible that during the procedure they will meet opposition from employees. Organizations besides need to increase the use of information engineering in order to assist the job sing the flow of information.

Wong, ( 2005 ) suggest the demand for a more systematic and calculated survey on the critical success factors ( CSFs ) for implementing cognition direction is important. Organizations need to be aware and cognizant of the factors that will act upon the success of a cognition direction enterprise. Ignorance and inadvertence of the necessary of import factors will probably impede an organisation ‘s attempt to recognize its full benefit. Wong, ( 2005 ) besides indicate that old surveies of critical success factors ( CSFs ) for cognition direction execution have been to a great extent focused on big companies. This is because most of the early adoptive parents and superior performing artists of cognition direction were in fact big and transnational corporations. As such, bing factors are chiefly big companies oriented, thereby reflecting their state of affairss and demands. Directly using these factors into the little and average endeavors ( SMEs ) environment may non be sufficient without an apprehension of their really ain and specific conditions. Previous surveies fall short of analyzing and placing the CSFs from the SMEs position. They have non considered the characteristics, features and state of affairss of smaller houses. Nor have they explored other factors, which could potentially be more of import for SMEs when carry throughing cognition direction.

This paper evolves a theoretical account for critical success factors for cognition direction executions in little medium endeavors ( SMEs ) based on a questionnaire study. Analytic Hierarchy Process ( AHP ) model has been developed for happening the importance of the influential factors. AHP is an effectual quantitative tool that helps to prioritise jobs, issues or variables based on relevant standards and options. The pertinence and utility of the AHP attack as a multi-criteria decision-making tool is good acknowledged in the direction literature. The present work has adopted this tool for segregating a few critical facets of cognition direction execution from the inconsequential many, so that organisations could concentrate merely on those dimensions that are important for their success alternatively of passing a big measure of clip, attempt and resources in mindlessly concentrating on peripheral issues.

Therefore the aims of this paper are double:

To place the standards for the AHP theoretical account with regard to issues associating to critical success factors for cognition direction executions in SMEs

To show an AHP model for absolute measuring of precedences in order to critically measure the issues associating to critical success factors for cognition direction executions in SMEs.

2. Review of Literature

2.1 Enablers to Knowledge Management

As organisations embark into pull offing their cognition they need to be clear of the factors that influence cognition direction, which are known as cognition direction enablers. Enablers are the driving force in transporting out cognition direction, they do non merely bring forth cognition in the organisation by exciting the creative activity of cognition, but they besides motivate the employees to portion their cognition and experiences with one another, leting organisational cognition to turn at the same time and consistently ( Ichijo et al. , 1998 ; Stonehouse and Pemberton, 1999 ) .

Knowledge direction enablers are the mechanism for the organisation to develop its cognition and besides excite an environment within the organisation for the creative activity and protection of cognition. They are besides the necessary edifice blocks in the betterment of the effectivity of activities for cognition direction ( Ichijo et al. , 1998 ; Stonehouse and Pemberton, 1999 ) . Knowledge direction enablers include the methods of cognition direction, organisational construction, corporate civilization, information engineering, people, and schemes, etc. ( Bennett and Gabriel, 1999 ; Zack, 1999 ; Davenport, 1997 ; Long, 1997 ) .

A survey by Yu et Al. ( 2007 ) identified a set of critical enablers such as cognition direction squad activity, larning orientation, knowledge direction system quality, and knowledge direction wages for developing organisational capablenesss of cognition direction. These critical enablers have a important, positive influence on cognition direction public presentation.

Research done by Yeh et Al. ( 2006 ) concludes that scheme and leading, corporate civilization, people, and information engineering are four of the enablers in cognition direction. They found that for the scheme and leading enabler the most of import portion is to obtain the support of the top directors. For the corporate civilization enabler, the of import portion is the forming of a civilization of sharing but demands to be supplemented by information engineering. For the people enabler, other than the preparation classs, the channels of acquisition and the inducement plan for the employees are besides cardinal factors. As for the information engineering enabler, the rapid hunt of cognition for its re-use is going more and more of import. In pattern they discovered that the “ constitution of a dedicated unit ” is besides a cardinal enabler, and this enabler chiefly plays the function of fostering cognition direction, taking communicating, and organizing with other sections as its responsibility.

2.2 Inhibitors to Knowledge Management

The biggest inhibitor to knowledge direction execution arises from involuntariness of people to consistently form their cognition. Since, this can non be solved with engineering, different sorts of work are needed. Examples include the publicity of cognition direction amongst people, or necessitating top direction to give their people force per unit area to implement cognition direction ( Yeh et al. , 2006 ) .

Chatzoglou and Diamantidis ( 2009 ) conducted research that focused on the IT impact on house ‘s non-financial IT hazard. Their consequences indicate that IT risk factors affect chiefly coordination and partly information ability but non productiveness. Furthermore, the most important hazard factors impacting concern public presentation are direction ability, information unity, controllability and exclusivity.

Lin et Al. ( 2005 ) suggest inhibitors in implementing the cognition direction originate out of strategic, perceptual experience, planning and execution issues. The consequences of their research reveal that:

From the strategic facet, the upper direction should turn to the endeavor ‘s strength, failing, chances, and menaces, and so explicate a suited cognition direction scheme. Furthermore, they should be equipped with information about the activities and public presentation throughout the organisation.

From the perceptual experience facet, the critical undertaking of the top directors is to place the nucleus cognition required to keep competitory advantage. Employees and top directors work together for a common end ; therefore, employee attempts can vouch a successful execution of the cognition direction. Therefore, an organisation should supply suited preparation and resources to the employees, and utilize information engineering to supply a friendly depository to standardise and hive away cognition. The organisation should besides set up an atmosphere stressing cognition sharing and invention and promoting employees to organize such a civilization through a wages system.

From the planning facet, the action program should include agenda, people involved and resources required, although it is hard to reassign the necessary cognition to the cognition direction program due to non-standardization. Employees ‘ orientation toward cognition direction, including the consciousness of the importance and benefits of cognition direction and IT skills for cognition direction procedure, should be wholly addressed. Knowledge-oriented employee appraisals can besides neglect if they are non linked closely to bing incentive systems. The company should take stairss to construct up the trust of the cognition proprietor ‘s by tie ining cognition sharing to pay and inducements.

From the execution facet, a robust set of prosodies that evaluates the value of the cognition direction after execution will necessitate to be developed. It is indispensable that the top directors instill in the employees the importance and benefits of cognition direction. Employees frequently fear that if they pass on their cognition to others, they will jeopardize their ain place, authorization, even power in the organisation. Training and communicating are indispensable to quiet down employees ‘ frights of alteration, and possibly to assist them to bask new ways of working with their co-workers. Therefore, houses need to make the right circumstance around the organisation, chiefly in the countries of cognition direction activities and civilization.

Jennex and Zakharova ( 2005 ) suggest a holistic attack that addresses critical elements such as – an effectual technological substructure ; incorporating the engineering substructure into mundane procedures ; holding an enterprise-wide cognition construction or taxonomy ; a cognition direction scheme ; knowledge direction prosodies of success and designation of inhibitors of cognition use.

Lang ( 2001 ) identified several inhibitors to knowledge creative activity and use in organisations. First, there may be unequal attention of those organisational relationships that promote cognition creative activity. Second, there may be deficient linkage between cognition direction and corporate scheme. Third, inaccurate rating of the part that cognition makes to organisation ‘s net incomes renders the value of cognition direction equivocal. Fourthly, there may be a permeant deficiency of holistic theory in cognition direction attempts. Finally – possibly non something normally considered a job for directors to cover with -poor verbal accomplishments may impede the existent procedures of cognition creative activity.

Plessis, ( 2007 ) feel that the direction of the inhibitors to knowledge direction would necessitate to be a mix of cultural, organisational, procedure, direction and engineering enterprises. The challenge is to choose and unite the methods and attacks available, and tackle them to turn to the organisation ‘s concern demands.

2.3 Critical Success Factors for Knowledge Management

Generic critical success factors exist for cognition direction ; nevertheless, each organisational environment and civilization is alone and nowadayss alone critical success factors. Co-creation with all relevant stakeholders is highly of import on this route to understand the organisational civilization and foibles good before shiping on a cognition direction journey, every bit far as possible. Critical success factors specific to an environment are, nevertheless, frequently merely identified one time the journey has started, and it is therefore of import for a cognition direction scheme to be flexible to take these factors into history. The terminal province will be different than the original scheme and roadmap for an organisational cognition direction execution due to these alone critical success factors. Adaptability and flexibleness to take alone critical success factors into history will hence be a critical success factor in itself ( Plessis, 2007 ) .

As asserted by Frey ( 2001 ) , although big organisations have led the manner in introducing and implementing cognition direction, it is progressively of import for little concerns to pull off their corporate mind. Okunoye and Karsten ( 2002 ) stated that cognition direction has so become the implicit in beginnings for successful organisations irrespective of their size and geographical locations. Therefore, a better apprehension of the CSFs for implementing it in SMEs is needed in order to guarantee the success of their attempts.

Wong, ( 2005 ) has grouped the critical success factors into a figure of generic factors such as direction leading and support, civilization, engineering, scheme, measuring, functions and duties, etc. These are common in knowledge direction attempts and hence, they are besides believed to be applicable to SMEs. He suggests that one should besides see the demands and state of affairss of SMEs when developing CSFs for them. Wong, ( 2005 ) proposes a comprehensive theoretical account for implementing cognition direction in SMEs. They are: direction leading and support ; civilization ; IT ; scheme and intent ; measuring ; organisational substructure ; procedures and activities ; motivational AIDSs ; resources ; preparation and instruction ; and HRM.

Recently ( He and Wei, 2009 ) discussed that Knowledge Management System users ‘ beliefs are contextually differentiated, and a differentiation between cognition part and knowledge-seeking behaviours and an equal accent on their discrepancy in footings of user belief is needed. Yang et Al. ( 2009 ) identified important cognition direction enablers and examined their impacts on organisational public presentation.

Chen et Al. ( 2009 ) proposed an attack of mensurating a engineering university ‘s cognition direction public presentation from competitory position. Their attack integrates analytical web procedure with balanced scorecard that contains four positions, including client position, internal concern position, invention and larning position, and fiscal position. Chang et Al. ( 2009 ) investigates the cardinal factors for cognition direction in the national authorities of Taiwan. Their survey relied on two typical dimensions: nucleus KM processes ( organisational missions and values, IT applications, certification, procedure direction, and human resource ) and KM public presentation ( knowledge gaining control and transmutation, concern public presentation, and knowledge sharing and value add-on ) . Wen ( 2009 ) developed an AHP theoretical account for the measuring of the effectivity of Knowledge Management in Taiwanese hi-tech endeavors.

Therefore, what emerges from the reappraisal of literature is the followers:

There are both enablers and inhibitors to knowledge direction executions in SMEs.

Both enablers and inhibitors may be classified basically into three wide classs – proficient, human, and fiscal.

Critical Success Factors ( CSFs ) for cognition direction executions are different for SMEs from that of big organisations.

Critical Success Factors ( CSFs ) besides depend on the direction of the enablers and the inhibitors.

Therefore, it is good for the SME to construct a model that would be used to prioritise the enablers and inhibitors towards a successful cognition direction enterprise. For this ground we propose the AHP model to prioritise influential factors lending to a SME ‘s inaugural towards the execution of cognition direction.

3. Model for Knowledge Management execution

Any successful managerial execution requires direction of enablers and the inhibitors. Similarly, in instance of cognition direction it is of import to hold the information about the influential factors ( enablers and inhibitors ) for the successful execution of cognition direction. Not all of the influential factors are every bit of import for the successful cognition direction. For this ground we have used the AHP model for happening the importance of the influential factors. AHP has been widely used as an analytical tool for determinations related to knowledge direction. Recent work by Wen ( 2009 ) in showing an effectiveness measuring theoretical account for cognition direction utilizing AHP is a part in this way.

In AHP the complex determination is structured into a hierarchy descending from an overall aim to assorted influential ‘factors ‘ , ‘sub-factors ‘ , and so on, until the lowest degree. The aim or the overall end of the determination is represented at the top degree of the hierarchy. The factors and sub-factors lending to the determination are represented at the intermediate degrees. Finally, the determination options or choice picks are laid down at the last degree of the hierarchy. Harmonizing to Saaty ( 2000 ) , a hierarchy can be constructed by originative thought, remembrance, and utilizing people ‘s positions. It should be noted that there is no set processs for bring forthing the degrees to be included in the hierarchy. The construction of the hierarchy depends upon the nature or type of managerial determinations. Besides, the figure of the degrees in a hierarchy depends on the complexness of the job being analyzed and the grade of item of the job that an analyst requires to work out. As such, the hierarchy representation of a system may change from one individual to another.

In the present survey the influential factors are determined via widespread probes and audiences with assorted experts, and owner/managers of SMEs. Synthesizing the literature reappraisal from ( Chang et al. , 2009 ; Chatzoglou, and Diamantidis, 2009 ; Chen et al. 2009 ; He and Wei, 2009 ; Lai et al. , 2009 ; Wen, 2009 ; Yang et al. , 2009 ) , the sentiments of the experts and owner/managers are employed to obtain the two chief factors: enablers and inhibitors. From these factors, 6 influential sub-factors for the successful execution of cognition direction are briefly described as follows ( mention to Figure 1 for complete hierarchal construction ) :

Enablers ( C1 ) : This factor includes three sub-factors, C11: proficient ; C12: homo ; C13: fiscal.

Inhibitors ( C2 ) : This factor includes three sub-factors, C21: proficient ; C22: homo ; C23: fiscal.

Harmonizing to the AHP methodological analysis, weights ( precedences ) can be determined utilizing a pair-wise comparing within each brace of factors. To find the comparative weights, owner/managers can be asked to do pair-wise comparings utilizing a 1-9 penchant graduated table ( Saaty, 2000 ) . However, in the present survey for the pair-wise comparing, we have relied on existent informations, that is, the informations extracted from the questionnaire study. The advantage of utilizing existent informations ( quantitative informations ) over penchant graduated table for pair-wise comparing eliminates the demand for consistence cheques ( Saaty, 2000 ) .






Successful Knowledge Management

Degree 1

Degree 2

Degree 3

Figure 1: Model for Successful Knowledge Management Implementation

4. Methodology

Data Beginning: The research used both secondary and primary informations. An extended literature study was undertaken, which helped in bordering the questionnaire for the primary informations aggregation. The focal point of the survey was on primary informations.

Research attack: The study method was used for the survey. Our primary information has been gathered utilizing questionnaire technique. Our mark population is all little houses in the National Capital Territory of Delhi ( India ) with turnover runing from Rs. 50 million to Rs. 250 million and employment degrees between 15 and 50 employees. Specifically, we are aiming the proprietors or top directors at these houses.

For the intents of this research, we used a questionnaire study. The questionnaire included 60 inquiries in two subdivisions such as:

[ A ] Enablers to Knowledge Management

[ B ] Inhibitors to Knowledge Management

Contact Method: The questionnaires were sent via electronic mail and were telephonically followed up.

Sample Size: Amongst the 4263 companies ( as per Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy Prowess database ) that belonged to the standards in the full state, 1039 such companies were located in the National Capital Region of Delhi, which included New Delhi, Delhi, Faridabad, Gurgaon, Ghaziabad and NOIDA. Due attention has been taken to include merely those companies that made the sample more representative therefore, e-mail questionnaires were sent to 500 amongst these 1039 companies. 119 responses were received that formed the sample for the survey. This is a 23.8 % response rate, which is acceptable.

Datas Analysis: The informations so collected were analyzed with the AHP techniques to get at weights ( precedences ) .

The undermentioned process has been adopted on the collected questionnaire study informations for pair-wise comparing of AHP. First, we calculated the mean value of 119 responses ( penchants based on 5- point Likert graduated table ) obtained for each inquiry. These mean values were calculated to depict the cardinal location of an full distribution of responses. Then for every said class we calculated the Composite Preference Value ( out of 5 ) utilizing the undermentioned relation:

Composite Preference Value ( CPF ) = ( Corrected Value a?• Maximum Value ) x 5


Calculated value = amount of the mean values for the inquiries considered in a class.

Maximum value = amount of the highest possible values that a respondent can take for the inquiries considered in a class.

5. Research Findingss

The pair-wise comparing matrices demoing the step of each factor ‘s comparative importance with regard to the overall aim of successful cognition direction is summarized in Table 1. For the pair-wise comparing of the factors and sub factors, we relied on inputs obtained from the study.

We consider two critical factors of import for successful cognition direction: enablers and inhibitors. From the brace wise comparing the image emerges that for successful cognition direction, enablers ( 50.86 % ) are marginally of import over inhibitors ( 49.14 % ) . The difference of comparative importance being fringy suggests that enablers are of import and inhibitors can non be ignored. Thus it is of import to tackle the enablers about cognition direction and its associated benefits amongst owner/managers without fring sight about the inhibitors for a successful cognition direction.

Based on probes and audiences with assorted experts and owner/managers of SMEs these critical factors ( enablers and inhibitors ) were farther decomposed into three sub factors, viz. , proficient, human and fiscal for capturing world ( see Figure 1 for complete hierarchal construction ) . On pair-wise comparing of proficient, human and fiscal bomber factors matching to enablers ; proficient ( 37.07 % ) dominates the other sub factors, i.e. human ( 36.26 % ) and fiscal ( 26.67 % ) . It implies that owner/managers of SMEs consider investings in engineering as the ultimate solution to all jobs. It may be noted that when the same proficient, human and fiscal bomber factors are compared pair-wise corresponding to inhibitors, fiscal bomber factor ( 38.36 % ) dominates the other sub factors, proficient ( 31.64 % ) and human ( 30.01 % ) . The consequence suggests that fiscal considerations are prevailing inhibitor towards shiping into cognition direction executions.

In what follows following, we use the underside up attack to acquire the planetary relevancy of proficient, human and fiscal facets towards successful cognition direction. Towards this we multiply the local relevancy of proficient, human and fiscal bomber factors matching to their parent factors with the local relevancy of the parent factors matching to overall nonsubjective, i.e. successful cognition direction. Finally, the obtained relevancy ‘s of proficient, human and fiscal facets matching to the critical factors, i.e. enablers and inhibitors are added to acquire the planetary relevancy. The consequences obtained for the planetary relevancy of proficient, human and fiscal facets integrating relevancy of the critical factors, i.e. enablers and inhibitors ; proficient ( 34.40 % ) is most of import followed by homo ( 33.19 % ) and fiscal ( 32.41 % ) .

Owner/managers of SMEs need to prioritise their attempts towards successful cognition direction in footings of proficient, human and fiscal facets needfully in that order:

The owner/mangers of SMEs should work out schemes for successful cognition direction by optimising the enabler ‘s facet of proficient bombers factor while extenuating the inhibitors emerging out of the same sub factor. The owner/managers may concentrate on procedure betterment, system betterment, and concern intelligence development on a precedence footing. Simultaneously they should maintain a ticker on harm to knowledge substructure, copyright/patent violation and informations pilferage and larceny.

In footings of human bomber factor the owner/managers should do necessary attempts to heighten employee competences, satisfaction, and keeping. At the same clip they should endeavour to cut down employee turnover, corporate espionage and backdown of attempts on the portion of the employees.

Sing fiscal bomber factor the owner/managers should seek their best to heighten return on investings on edifice cognition substructure and advancing cognition direction patterns while maintaining operational costs under control.

6. Decision

We have developed a hierarchal theoretical account for the execution of successful cognition direction. In the proposed theoretical account, foremost we identified the influencing factors and sub factors for the execution of successful cognition direction. For this we relied on critical literature reappraisal and sentiment of experts, and owner/managers of SMEs. Survey has been conducted for acquiring responses of owner/managers towards the influential factors and sub-factors with a position to successfully implement cognition direction. Finally, these responses have been collated to happen the composite penchant value ( CPF ) used as weights for the pair-wise comparing of the factors and sub-factors in AHP.

Based on the AHP consequences, we conclude the following for successful cognition direction in SMEs:

Pull offing enablers and inhibitors are critical success factors for cognition direction in SMEs.

Owner/managers need to tackle the enablers but non be self-satisfied towards inhibitors.

Owner/managers consider engineering execution as a major enabler towards successful cognition direction.

Owner/managers consider fiscal considerations as a major inhibitor towards successful cognition direction.

Owner/managers need to prioritise their attempts towards successful cognition direction in footings of proficient, human and fiscal facets needfully in that order

The cardinal thesis is that enablers of the cognition direction paradigm frequently unravel inhibitors in accommodating and germinating cognition direction systems for concern environments that are characterized by high uncertainness and extremist discontinuous alteration.

Specifically, the survey identified the critical success factors as: procedure betterment, system betterment, and concern intelligence, heightening employee competences, satisfaction, and keeping, return on investings on edifice cognition substructure.

The survey besides identified that success can non be achieved unless harm to knowledge substructure is prevented, copyright/patent violation and informations pilferage and larceny is stopped, employee turnover, corporate espionage and backdown of attempts on the portion of employees is reduced, and operational costs are under control.

In the present survey the theoretical account considered influential factors such as enablers and inhibitors. The topic of cognition direction being huge, many other factors may act upon cognition direction besides the 1s considered in the present survey. Future research may be directed towards placing several other influential factors with a position to placing a comprehensive list of critical success factors for cognition direction. Besides the present work has considered merely the top down attack. Clear designation of act uponing factors would necessitate to see a underside up attack as good.

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