Knowledge Management in ITIL: Uses and Advantages

Famous personalities over the globe have always acknowledged the importance of knowledge. Some quotes are:

Francis Bacon: Knowledge is Power

Benjamin Franklin: An investment in knowledge pays the best interest.

These statements were quoted in the olden times where knowledge was thought of as a valuable commodity in an individual which can neither be stolen nor plundered.

In the fiercely fought competitive world of today, where every organization wants to prove their quality and mettle, knowledge as a commodity is much sought after. Many Multinational organizations and small businesses are interested in making their staff learn new skills or adapt to new levels of certification such as ITIL Certification, PRINCE2 Certification or PMP Certification proves this fact. Knowledge can be explained in various business words in today’s business. Some examples are analysis of competitors, analysis of stock markets, analysis of markets and the ability to behave positively against all odds in a difficult situation (condition) and emerge successful. Proper sharing of knowledge within the organization can lead to efficient and effective use of this resource in times of incidents or disruption in services and improve their productivity levels to compete globally.

One of the most sought after certifications of today, ITIL emphasised on the importance of Knowledge Management in a process. In fact, Knowledge Management can be described as one of the important processes in Service Transition (Lifecycle Module), the third phase of the Service Lifecycle and in Capability Module, Release Control and Validation etc.

In the Service Lifecycle of a service, the main aim of knowledge management can be described as:

  • Enhance the value of proper discussion in decisions by means of providing availability of precise, reliant information
  • Provide assistance to the service provider for becoming more effective in improving quality of service to the customers, reduction in costs and awareness of taking proper decisions in case of an emergency

Knowledge is stored in the Service Knowledge Management System where data is stored from all quarters and through this repository, relevant information is provided to types of personnel who should access the required details.

This process is best described in terms of the Data-to-Information- to – Knowledge-to-Wisdom (DIKW) structure.

Data: Sets of facts are stored as data (valuable information) which are obtained from metrics. Various types of Important data from different branches are captured in most organizations and stored in databases such as Service Knowledge Management System and Definitive Media Library.

Information: Information means storage of content from data in multiple formats such as emails, multimedia and documents. The content should be in understandable format so that it could be captured easily, queried, and reused for future experiences in cases of repeated problems and errors.

Knowledge: In an organization, knowledge can be described as the combination of ideas, insights, values, decision making from past experience in personnel. It can be also described as the process that identifies the knowledge gap between personnel or department and individuals, if in need of knowledge, needs to be given the right amount of information so that they can perform their duties satisfactorily.

Wisdom: The correct use of knowledge in an unwanted situation provides value and helps the key personnel to implement proper decisions.

The value of knowledge is vital throughout the lifecycle of a service. Knowledge transfer is essential at important points in the lifecycle and an organization will become effective only when an efficient mechanism is put in place for allowing people to search and gain relevant details with regards to their profile.

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