The Holy Grail of Knowledge Management is the ability to selectively capture, archive, and access the best practices of work-related knowledge and decision making from employees and managers for both individual and group behaviors. For example, a manager may have knowledge of how to quickly procure parts from a supplier (individual behavior) as well as how to work with other managers in getting policies pushed through the corporate hierarchy (group behavior).
IN THE REAL WORLD: Knowledge Management in the Field
One of the pioneers in the modern business knowledge management arena is the American Productivity and Quality Center (APQC). For several decades prior to APQC's 1995 Knowledge Management Symposium, held in conjunction with Arthur Andersen Companies, most KM work was conducted in academic laboratories. Much of this work was performed in specific areas. For example, throughout the 1980s, research in Knowledge Management in medicine was carried out in the Decision Systems Group at Harvard Medical School, with funding from the National Library of Medicine.
Today, many of the Fortune 1000 companies have ongoing KM projects aimed at general and specific business functions. A partial list of these companies includes: