15 benefits of Knowledge Sharing

Knowledge sharing is recognised as one of the biggest success factors for digital organisations. A quick glance at the big 5; Google, Apple, Facebook, Amazon and Microsoft, is enough to convince us that knowledge sharing is here, and it’s happening now.

We’re entering a new era of knowledge, with collaborative platforms promoting social and circular business knowledge, where all employees are able to participate and comment on the practices and ideas of their colleagues. These platforms not only contain scientific, technical and operational knowledge, but also include ideas, opinions and feedback directly from employees and even customers. This means that tacit knowledge is strongly reduced in favour of explicit, written knowledge, which can be accessed at any time, and by anyone.

We’ve listed below the benefits we’ve seen first-hand over the last ten years. These have allowed us at Elium to prioritise agility in this ever-changing digital climate and given us a double organisational dynamic; supporting both design agility and customer satisfaction. This dynamic has helped us design better performing products and services.

Dynamic 1:

Agility and exploration

Knowledge sharing improves strategic design agility, as it is much easier to anticipate and respond to customer requests and manage expectations. It paves the way to new products and services through:

1. Quick thinking

A diverse range of opinions can be considered, identifying the future thought-leaders amongst you and allowing for objective decisions to be taken quickly.

2. Innovation & development

You are able to create a culture in which innovation and development are strongly integrated, so employees are able to keep track of what’s happening in the field (STEEP) and are inspired to think bigger through stimulated learning.

3. Collective collaboration

Your teams are able to distribute their shared workloads more efficiently, whilst redefining priorities based on updated insights and data.

4. Speedy delivery times

Easing workplace communication means that customers’ delivery times are shortened and any improvements can be integrated seamlessly.

5. Clear constraints

By calling upon everyone’s previous experiences and expertise, it’s easier to understand any blockages or constraints which might affect future projects, whether they’re internal or external.

6. Direct feedback

Using dedicated technology enabling feedback, the organisation can be easily informed which products and services are viable and better serve the customer’s needs.

7. Involved employees

Knowledge sharing empowers employees, as they know that their voice and expertise is valued. This can inspire them to define new business models and infrastructures, helping to evolve corporate culture and customer experience.

8. A hierarchy-free digital workplace

Flattening organisational ties means that everyone can participate freely and recognise contributions of each throughout the platform.

Dynamic 2:

Performance and operations

Knowledge sharing improves strategic planning, making top management more efficient and transparent. It optimises the performance of products and services through:

9. Getting it right

Errors are much less likely to be repeated, as all colleagues share their experiences, both in what worked and what didn’t. This allows new employees to learn from the mistakes of others.

10. Speedy communication

Important information can be communicated widely, and quickly, whilst also offering relevant information and resources alongside it for context.

11. Pro-active pioneers

Knowledge sharing inspires proactive, self-led exploration of content, allowing employees to search for relevant shared documents, presentations and videos without restriction.

12. Practices & procedures

Encouraging good practice from everyone means that procedures and processes can become standardised, and employees feel
comfortable and secure using them.

13. Reassured employees

Newcomers feel welcome and have quick access to the information they need. Departing team members can rest assured their knowledge will remain within the organisation, accessible by their colleagues.

14. Internal improvements

Employees have all the information they need to optimise methods, tools and techniques, as well as the freedom to question and improve their
use.

15. Creating experts

Expertise can be shared widely, meaning the expert is no longer needed. All employees can build on their skills and gain confidence, reducing the skills gap and widening the talent pool.

Knowledge sharing is quickly becoming the journey that any business must embark on in the digital era, in order to build an ‘ambidextrous’ organisation; one that simultaneously explores new thinking and yet exploits its current knowledge, allowing for creativity alongside adaptability. More established organisations can take advantage of their experience and expertise by simply sharing it widely, giving them an edge over smaller, or less agile competition.

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