The Managing Director of a global consulting firm was concerned that the company was failing to capture and leverage the knowledge and expertise resident in its roughly 15,000-person consulting staff. While there were well over one hundred knowledge management initiatives underway, almost all were being performed and funded at a local level, i.e., within a department or workgroup. The firm’s leadership team lacked visibility to almost all of these projects and none of its knowledge assets, such as project proposals, resumes, project summaries, frameworks, white papers, and marketing materials, were available for reuse across the firm. The firm had no comprehensive approach for preserving corporate knowledge.
The Managing Director believed that there was a significant opportunity to establish companywide policies and practices for managing and safeguarding the firm’s knowledge assets. He formed a steering committee, composed of roughly 20 senior partners, and charged them with developing and implementing a best-in-class knowledge management program.