Knowledge-at-work: Corporate memory — the hard way: A great essay detailing why most knowledge management initiatives have failed.
“Many dollars have been invested, many organizations have egg on their collective faces, many repositories lie unused, shunned by novices and experts alike and yet there are more KM projects starting each day with the same vision / mission and yet another dream. Perhaps we think portals or automatic profiling or collaborative systems or social software will do it this time!”
I love the idea of knowledge management, but the reality is so hard to pin down. I headed up a knowledge management initiative with my last employer. We built the system perfectly — from a code perspective, it was a thing of beauty.
However, as I’ve been saying a lot lately, great code doesn’t make great applications. Applications are great by solving great problems, and we just couldn’t convince the users that they had a problem. They thought everything was fine and that the statis quo worked, so the initiative died hard.