Knowledge Management (KM) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) are beginning to merge. As the capture, delivery and access of knowledge evolves, artificial intelligence will contribute to this new evolving knowledge landscape. AI plays an important part to KM by elevating how the delivery of knowledge occurs to the people who need it (employees, vendors, customers). AI is used to scale the volume and effectiveness of knowledge distribution and delivery.
The thought of AI infused KM is being realized through technologies such as natural language processing (NLP), semantic search engines and machine learning (ML). AI infused KM improves the delivery of knowledge by:
- Enabling Dynamic knowledge through constant updating adhering to your organization’s content (information and knowledge) lifecycle management processes. This also includes connecting the experts who can provide insights about the knowledge. The Dynamic component of knowledge reflects your organizations evolve its knowledge assets over time.
- Enabling the Accurate component of knowledge, to connect the authoritative source and authoritative voice for all knowledge assets. This knowledge is accepted by your organization as the “source of truth”.
- Enabling the Personalized component of knowledge to answer the questions that the users of your knowledge are seeking. Personalized knowledge is tailored to what an individual need to make a decision and presented in a way that is consumable to answer to their questions. Personalized knowledge is facilitated by how knowledge flows throughout your organization.
It is this infusion of AI and KM that is facilitating the need to align your KM strategy with your AI strategy.
Knowledge Management and Your KM Strategy
The focus of knowledge management (KM) is to enable people and organizations to collaborate, share, create and use knowledge. Understanding this KM is leveraged to improve performance, increase innovation and grow the knowledge base of both people and the organization. Knowledge must be Dynamic, Accurate and Personal. Dynamic knowledge is constantly updated adhering to your organization’s content (information and knowledge) lifecycle management processes. This also includes the experts who can provide insights about the knowledge. The Dynamic component of knowledge reflects your organization’s brand, tone and evolves over time. The Accurate component of knowledge is identified as the authoritative source and authoritative voice for that subject matter. This knowledge is accepted by your organization as the “source of truth”. The Personalized component of knowledge answers the questions that the users of your knowledge are seeking. Personalized knowledge is tailored to what the individual needs to use in order to answers to their questions and make decisions. Personalized knowledge is facilitated by how knowledge flows throughout your organization.
In developing your KM strategy, you must identify the appropriate KM method(s) that will be needed to address what business need you are trying to solve and align that KM method appropriately. Knowledge Management (KM) is a discipline that promotes an integrated approach to identifying, retrieving, evaluating, and sharing an organization’s intellectual capital and your KM strategy must reflect this. The KM strategy will include procedures and methods to collect knowledge throughout the organization. This includes establishing the infrastructure, networks for transferring knowledge between employees, and tools to facilitate the process. KM harvests innovation, and enhances individual and organizational performance, by weaving improved knowledge capture, creation, access, transfer and sharing techniques into the fabric of three components of an organization’s environment:
- People, those who create, organize, apply, and transfer knowledge; and the leaders who act on that knowledge
- Processes, methods of creating, organizing, applying and transferring knowledge
- Technology, solutions and systems used to connect people to the knowledge (tacit and explicit) of the organization, to facilitate improved access to knowledge and decision making
Artificial Intelligence and Your AI Strategy
Artificial Intelligence (AI) has become the latest “buzzword” in the industry today. However, AI has been around for decades. The intent of AI is to enable computers to perform tasks that normally requiring human intelligence. AI’s promise is to build systems that will make decisions faster and more efficiently than humans, with the possibility of automating some jobs eventually replacing humans on these jobs. AI is a multidisciplinary science, which includes Expert Systems, Machine Learning, Robotics, Natural Language Processing (NLP), Speech Recognition and Virtual/Augmented Reality.
In developing your AI strategy, you must consider what business need you are trying to solve and align the AI capability that will address that need. Whether it’s Machine Learning (ML), Conversational AI, Robotic Process Automation (RPA), Virtual Reality, or Natural Language Processing (NLP); your AI strategy sets the ground rules and establishes the roadmap to implement AI at your organization. Creating an AI strategy for the sake of it won’t produce great results. To get the most out of AI, it must be tied to your business strategy and your big-picture strategic goals. How your organization will use AI will be determined by the ability of the organization to develop, operationalized, and evolve an AI strategy.
Aligning Your KM and AI Strategy
Strategic AI and KM priorities must align with your overall corporate strategy and it must be clear on where your business is headed. Please keep in mind that you don’t want to apply AI and KM to an outdated corporate strategy or irrelevant business goals. This understanding will indicate your business priorities; the problems you want or need to solve; and determine how AI and KM can help deliver on your business strategic goals. Some examples of AI and KM priorities or business use cases that aligning your AI and KM strategy will address include:
- Providing capabilities to predict trending knowledge areas/topics that your knowledge workers needs
- Identifying which targeted knowledge will resonate with your knowledge workers based on real-time engagement and content consumption
- Providing personalize knowledge based on individual preferences
- Improving content decisions by leveraging machine learning around what content will be best suited to address the situation
- AI through intents (search intents) will be able to better know what content your knowledge workers need. Intents will provide a better understanding of what a person is looking for by better understanding the intended use of the content.
- Cognitive capabilities to understand, interpret and manipulate human language through machine learning to anticipate the needs of users to aid in decision making and improve outcomes, all geared to improve worker performance and achieve substantial business value.
I will take a deeper dive into aligning your KM and AI strategies in my next book AI and KM in Practice, available in 2021!