Earl (2001) states that, Knowledge Management (KM) is increasingly becoming important to managers, and it has been brought home through conferences and publications. Most companies have embraced effective handling of knowledge, and it is one of the significant factors that help counter competition among them. It should be noted that the Knowledge Management Maturity Model (KMMM) plays an integral role in the development of professional knowledge management. Bearing this in mind, companies must understand the procedure or how knowledge management is developed with KMMM.
The development of knowledge management with KMMM takes place in six phases as shown below.
According to Gallager & Hazlett (2004), the first phase of development is the ‘Orientation and Planning’ phase. In this phase, organizations or organizational units are obliged to clarify their expectations. Also, definition and planning of exact procedures for each involved is done in this phase.
Laudon & Laudon (2004) indicates that the second phase is the ‘Motivation and Data Collection’ phase. It is expected that the people involved in the process of KM development must be motivated as this will enable them to actively contribute to the KMMM project. Also, provision of sufficient information, as well as its importance to the people involved, is vital to this phase. The information has to be collected from workshops and interviews, and this is dependent on the structure of KMMM. The interviews target various members of the organization to be investigated as this allows the provision of a representative picture of the organization. Once information is collected through in-depth interviews, assessment and evaluation is crucial, and this is carried out by KMMM consultants. It is important that the KMMM consultant have a comprehensive knowledge management expertise, experience in the management of projects, consultation know-how particularly in organizational consulting, and effective skills in communication. The qualifications mentioned are of significance as they ensure that the data collection process takes the form of competent expert discussions.
Klimko (2001) opines that after data collection, the next phase of the KMMM development project is ‘Consolidation and preparation’. In this phase, an assessment of the individual topics and key areas is done. Thereafter, individuals concerned comment on the assessment and the results are prepared for the next phase.
Von Krogh et al. (2001), mentions that ‘Feedback and Consensus’ are the succeeding phase where there is a discussion of the provisional results. It is also at this phase that a consensus is reached between the interpretations made by the organization members and the consultants. This phase is succeeded by the ‘Ideas for solutions and action proposals’ section. Here, although a detailed identification of causes and further project planning is not part of KMMM project, there is an emergence of ideas and suggestions for knowledge management interventions.
Once discussed, the next phase is ‘Report and Presentation’. The final report that serves as background information for the closing presentation is drawn up. Also, Snyman & Kruger, (2004) believe that in this phase, a decision is made on concrete measures, supervisors are appointed, and implementation of the KMMM is planned in detail.
Nicolas (2004) is of the opinion that the development of Knowledge Management with KMMM has been embraced by most companies as it has resulted in fruitful communication and improved mutual understanding of different views on the problems and solutions to knowledge management. Besides, it leads to understanding and appreciation of a gradual and holistic development of knowledge management, as well as the motivation of the participants.
However, Kochikar (2000) argues that the development of Knowledge Management with KMMM expends too much effort in trying to address technological concerns. Also, KMMM is believed to be too vague and offers little in the way of practical assistance. It has also been criticized for emphasizing culture and other management issues.