"We've spent $200 million in advertising and $40 million in consulting fees just to keep our nose above water--there has to be a better way!" - Fortune 500 CEO

Implementation Supervision and Management 

Once you have decided on the KM project and selected a vendor, we offer our services to supervise the implementation on your behalf and to assure that the goals you set during the first step of the process are addressed and met. We will work with the vendor of your choice in order to define the project specifications in the vendor’s format (if necessary) and coordinate the design meetings between the vendor and your technical staff or consultants. As implementation proceeds we will track the project management or act as project manager, according to your needs. Our prime contribution is to ensure that the business outcome is not sidetracked by technical expedience through decisions made by lower level contractors or employees who do not understand the larger picture. During acceptance testing we will estimate the timeliness of the information that is now included in the new KM system and the accuracy and reasonableness of it. We will particularly look for tracking and summary reports on the state of the system; these are sometimes not included in the vendor product and have to be built to specifications.

Example: In one system designed to process tens of thousands of records into an online repository, approximately one-third of the records were deleted by the processing system. This was not discovered for several weeks after the repository was exposed to the public and was only found when a specific single record was found to be missing online. The flaw was missed because the processing system did not produce a simple ‘records in: records out’ report that the operator could check. This is a symptom of technological overconfidence that can affect the quality of the information that the executives use to make critical decisions in real time. These decisions are only as good as the information they are based on. (Note that this problem was caused by the client’s programmers as they processed the input to the KM repository. Idiosyncrasies of the vendor systems are usually much more subtle and insidious.)

Our combination of technical and business expertise bridges the gap between the needs of the knowledge workers and the needs of the technical personnel that build the information systems. Our focus is not so much on the specific technology as it is on fitting that technology into your environment and tailoring to your information needs. In the event of a conflict between multiple goals or unadvertised limitations of the vendor (or corporate) system, we will mediate the discussion and propose a solution to management in the context of the original purpose of the project.

We are also available for consulting engagements to assist you in evaluating and selecting a vendor. We are vendor neutral; our goal is to provide you with the relevant data in order to make an informed decision relative to your current needs. If you have a long-term strategy that favors a particular product or vendor, we will respect that and work the input into our presentation of data. We would prefer that marketing needs not take a back seat to technical expediencies which is too often the case when buying technology.

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