ITIL®’s Knowledge Management process is crucial to the performance of all of the other functions and processes within the service lifecycle. Without good knowledge management, the best decisions cannot be made. Doesn’t it seem logical that Knowledge Management should be the key process and that knowledge managers should be viewed as key professionals?
Well, it would seem not. In the service management field, we often hear that someone is a service delivery manager, or that they work within release or configuration management. But how often do hear someone saying they work in knowledge management or that they are a knowledge manager? You don’t.
The Knowledge Management process sits within the Service Transition element of ITIL’s service lifecycle, although its influence can be felt throughout the entire service lifecycle. It maintains the service knowledge management system (SKMS), it gathers, analyses, stores and shares information throughout the organisation. Without the process, service managers would be headless chickens.
To some degree I accept that Knowledge Management can be achieved through a distributed model of responsibility. In fact, I recognise that we could all be classed as knowledge managers, to a degree, given that Knowledge Management is ingrained within all processes and functions. If knowledge management were handled by a designated team and if there was a person who was solely responsible for it, however, then and only then does Knowledge Management have its real potential to deliver real results.
From effective knowledge management, better decisions can be made at every stage of the service lifecycle. It stands to reason, then, that if we all loved Knowledge Management just a little more, then we would be far better off.
Keep checking back on this blog for information on service management and ITIL.