Exploiting knowledge management: the engineering and construction perspective
journal contributionposted on 09.02.2009, 13:54 by Patricia CarrilloPatricia Carrillo, Paul Chinowsky
Construction companies have always relied on their knowledge assets to provide services to clients. In recent years the terminology ‘knowledge management’ has been introduced. Knowledge management (KM) seeks to formalize the manner in which companies exploit their knowledge assets by harnessing organizational knowledge, promoting greater collaboration between groups with similar interests, capturing and using lessons learned on previous projects, etc. This paper investigates how major US engineering design and construction firms are implementing knowledge management initiatives in order to identify best practice. It adopts a case study methodology to investigate companies’ Strategy and Implementation, People Aspects and Metrics for Performance. The study finds that there is a clear distinction between the knowledge management activities undertaken by large engineering design firms and those of construction firms. There is also a much greater emphasis on knowledge sharing, which is just one component of knowledge management. Moreover, some companies have specific KM initiatives whilst others have activities that are part of their normal business processes.
- Architecture, Building and Civil Engineering