THE END OF THE WORLD AS WE KNOW IT Knowledge Management in a Mobile World
CONTENTS 01 02 03 04 05 06 07
The New Frontier Digging for Gold The Work Lounge Location, Location, Location Are you Ready About Woods Bagot About the Researchers
02 06 10 14 18 20 21
Authors Felicity McNish Susan Stewart ÂŠ Woods Bagot 2013 WOODSBAGOT.COM
Design & Artwork Michelle Lane
THE END OF THE WORLD AS WE KNOW IT
With the onslaught of mobility, itâ€™s the end of the world as we know it for the knowledge management community. In less than a decade mobile knowledge management has evolved from enabling remote access for teleworkers; to becoming the champion of highly collaborative, integrated, social and active knowledge environments where barriers such as physical location, technology and access are removed. In fact, mobility is becoming the new norm with predictions over a third of the worldâ€™s overall work force will become mobile by 2015 1. Understanding this transformation and the direct impact on organisations and the knowledge management fraternity were the reasons behind our research project. Our research investigated the impact of mobile technology within the knowledge management function in professional services firms and large corporations. The research draws on case studies, desktop research and interviews with senior knowledge professionals at Arup, Baker & McKenzie, Deloitte, Ernst & Young, Holding Redlich, King & Wood Mallesons, National Australia Bank, WorleyParsons and World Wide Refining Alcoa.
Through the research we found three overarching themes: 1. Knowledge management is in a constant state of disruption. As a result, knowledge professionals need to create dynamic knowledge strategies and be adaptive to new technologies and solutions. 2. Balancing risk and innovation is an ongoing challenge. Ensuring content is in a safe and secure environment whilst being highly functional and collaborative for the users is paramount. Educating staff on the intellectual property and security is key, along with training to manage the multitude of apps and introducing policies to protect the business. 3. Culture is critical to successful mobile workplaces. Culture has always been important, but even more so in a mobile world where professionals are connecting and sharing in unmanaged environments. Without a culture of trust, led by leadership, mobile knowledge canâ€™t be sustained. Thank you to the knowledge management professionals who provided open and honest insight into their workplace and their personal perceptions of the changing profession. References 1 Mielach D & BusinessNewsDaily (2012). 1.3 Billion Workers to Go Mobile by 2015. Scientific American. January 5 2012 http://www.scientificamerican.com/ article.cfm?id=1point3-billion-workersto-go-mobile
Mobile Knowledge Management 1
THE NEW FRONTIER
The term mobile knowledge management is not a new one, although its definition continues to evolve. Originally used to define remote access for teleworkers, mobile knowledge management now encompasses highly collaborative, integrated, social and active knowledge environments where previous barriers such as physical location, technology and access have been transformed. Understanding this transformation and the direct impact on organisations and the knowledge management fraternity were the reasons behind a recent Woods Bagot research project - Mobile knowledge management: Dealing with tools in the wild. Our research investigated the impact of mobile knowledge management in professional services firms and large corporations, drawing on case studies, desktop research and interviews with senior knowledge professionals at Arup, Baker & McKenzie, Deloitte, Ernst & Young, Holding Redlich, King & Wood Mallesons, National Australia Bank, Worley Parsons and World Wide Refining Alcoa.
Have mobile devices powered the need for constant connectivity? Or is it the need for constant connectivity that has driven the ongoing rise of mobile devices? Either way, the outcome has seen dramatic behavioural change in the way in which people: ––search and access information ––remain abreast of current events ––communicate with peers, friends and even unknowns ––absorb information ––produce information and perform their work. Moreover it has seen reduced reliance on physical connectivity and timezones, and at the same time created the need for immediacy and urgency.
“The study found that 93 per cent 93% of people continue to work after they leave office.”
Not in Kansas anymore Years ago, we started work when we sat down at our desks and read through our in-tray for letters and interoffice memos whilst we waited for our desktops to power up. Now, we start work in our pj’s, propped up on pillows churning out a few quick emails, checking to see if we got a response to a question overnight and scanning Zite for the latest news, before we hop into the shower. In fact, this multi-tasking continues throughout the day, until we finally log-off from work when our head hits the pillow. Good night Blackberry. A recent UK study of 1,000 working adults by mobile security software company Good Technology confirms that work and life have been blurred with the introduction of mobile devices. The study found that 93 per cent of people continue to work after they leave office – on average working an additional three hours and 31 minutes each week or three weeks a year1.
The survey also found that 38 per cent believe their job would be impossible without mobile email and 65 per cent do not go to sleep until they’ve had a final check of work emails. Interestingly nearly half surveyed used the same device for both work and personal activity. Similar results were evident at the recent KM Australia 2012 conference in Sydney. Of the 130 people attending the ‘Dealing with tools in the wild’ presentation, 18 per cent admitted that they read and responded to emails before they got out of bed, 28 per cent worked on their commute to work and 35 per cent checked emails after 10pm. Understandably mobile sales are reflecting our need for constant connectivity. By the end of 2011, world mobile cellular subscriptions reached 5.9 billion (in a 7 billion world population) with 45% having access to 3G coverage2. At the same time, of the 1.8 billion households worldwide, one third had internet access compared to only one fifth five years ago. And by the end of 2012 experts are predicting the sale of over 69 million iPads3.
61% Work on their commute to work
Reply to work emails whilst eating dinner
Read emails prior to 7am
Respond to work emails after 10pm
Repond to emails from bed
Figure 1: The 24 hour mobile environment [Good Technology Survey, 2012]1 WOODSBAGOT.COM
One last check of emails before bed
Mobile Knowledge Management 3
â€œBy the end of 2011, world mobile cellular subscriptions reached 5.9 billion (in a 7 billion world population) with 45% having access to 3G coverage2.â€?
Great expectations The impact of this constant connectivity means that knowledge workers can [and expect to] work anywhere, irrespective of distance, accessing knowledge on the bus, in the doctorâ€™s reception, in a client meeting and in the sushi line at lunch. No wonder when they actually get to work, they seek physical exchange, mostly at the coffee machine or whilst trying fix the photocopier. But this is all work. Collecting, scanning and processing information; and merging it with a sprinkling of tacit knowledge and serendipitous moments to create an original thought. Interestingly it seems that the workers are driving the need for constant connectivity. As a prime example, most organisations we approached indicated that staff have greater need for immediate access, sighting expectations that they should be able to walk away from a meeting with a copy of whiteboard notes on their tablet or laptop.
The demand for access has also seen staff take connectivity into their own hands. CIOs we interviewed acknowledged that five to ten years ago their staff were given corporate devices, yet now it is common for staff to purchase their own which may be more advanced than the corporate device. Most organisations we interviewed estimated that a quarter of their staff have an iPad or similar device which they used for work. The business was responding with mobile focused information technology strategies and policies to support and manage multiple and personal devices. A recent IBM global study4 of 675 CIOs and IT managers of large enterprises identified the differences in organisations that are embracing the new frontier. Forward thinking organisations are recognising the opportunities by supporting a broader set of devices and operating systems, investing in mobile application platforms and are favouring collaborative and content applications.
Initiatives contributing to mobility performance and improvements Enterprise mobility strategy
Support of broader set of mobile devices and OSs
72% 44% 69%
Mobile application platform 44%
External service provider for mobile device management
Bring your own device policy
Application store for employees
54% 37% Forward thinkers
Figure 2: Initiatives contributing to mobility performance and improvements. IBM (2012). Achieving success with a flexible workplace. May 2012.
Mobile Knowledge Management 4
Mobile can of worms Opening up networks to external devices and operating systems brings with it not only security and intellectual property issues, but also challenges with knowledge storage on diverse devices and access to information from third-party providers.
“Most organisations we interviewed estimated that a quarter of their staff have an iPad or similar device which they used for work.”
The law firms we interviewed noted that legal publishers have been slow to get off the mark with mobile knowledge platforms. Feedback showed a lack of legal resources suitable for tablets or restrictive licensing with single download or single user models that do not sit well with the needs of law firms where multiple users need to be able to access the content. Likewise divergent business models for content usage charges from knowledge platforms such as Factiva, Alcara and One Source apps are causing compounding access problems.
But this isn’t as easy as it sounds. The new frontier brings with it a new set of complex parameters mobile devices, technology platforms, constant access, immediacy of information, security, evolving learning styles, search capabilities, rules and regulations, culture – which our future pieces will explore. References 1 Good Technology (2012). UK Workers put in three weeks overtime answering calls and emails at home. Good Technology 2 July 2012. http://www1.good.com/ news/press-releases/current-pressreleases/161098825.html ITU Telecom World (2011). World in 2011: ICT Facts & Figures http://www. itu.int/ITU-D/ict/facts/2011/material/ ICTFactsFigures2011.pdf 2
Apple Insider (2012). As PC sales stall, Apple projected to sell 69M iPads in 2012. 7 July 2012. http://forums. appleinsider.com/t/151293/as-pcsales-stall-apple-projected-to-sell-69mipads-in-2012 3
Interestingly, even though not all third party providers have evolved with the demands of mobile knowledge some organisations have adapted by introducing their own platforms and apps to distribute and share documents in a secure and collaborative environment via mobile devices. Are we there yet? No. And it’s unlikely we ever will be. The speed of change in the mobile knowledge environment is so fast it is impossible to reach the final destination, if there even is one.
IBM (2012). Achieving success with a flexible workplace. May 2012. IBM Insights. http://www-935.ibm.com/ services/us/en/it-services/flexibleworkplace.html 4
Instead of focusing on the end, the short term objective should be to mould organisations into dynamic and adaptive entities with integrated mobile information technology and knowledge platforms. Whilst at the same time, working towards the long term goal of creating a collaborative and connected culture that is conducive to capturing and sharing knowledge.
Mobile Knowledge Management 5
DIGGING FOR GOLD
Tacit knowledge is the underbelly of the knowledge iceberg. Packed tight underneath explicit knowledge, it is often hard to see or even understand its girth until you are in the midst of it. Part experience, part intuition, tacit knowledge is difficult to transfer because thoughts and ideas are not always linear and are generally unconscious unless prodded. But extract it and you have knowledge gold. Harbouring tacit knowledge has always been a challenge for the knowledge management profession and in fact organisations in general. However, with the proliferation of mobile knowledge management and associated virtual communication tools and platforms, extracting tacit knowledge is becoming more conceivable.
Mobile mining Building an environment where tacit knowledge can be mined requires a combination of socialisation and serendipity - getting to know one another, connecting on interests, interpreting what is important and then blending it with the right place, at the right time. And with the emergence of different social media platforms, the art of socialisation, and in turn tacit knowledge, is going mobile.
“With the emergence of different social media platforms, the art of socialisation, and in turn tacit knowledge, is going mobile.”
The waiting game The growing significance of microblogging itself is a challenge for some organisations and leaders. Due to the high proportion of informal conversations and the ambiguity of the work purpose, the value of the platform as a foundation for knowledge transfer is often misunderstood and undervalued. However interactions, whether physical or virtual, are dynamic and complex webs and are therefore irreverent of any defined formula. So for leaders, seeing the direct value from this type of interaction is a matter of nurture, then ‘wait and see’.
A recent CIO study by IBM1 has found that ‘forward thinking’ companies are looking at social media, unified communications and enterprise social networking as ways to improve organisational performance with collaboration and immediacy.
In a recent review of Yammer’s success at Deloitte2, external researchers analysed the 14 days of recent Yammer conversations. Interestingly, results showed that the majority of responses fell into the categories of discussion [38%], sharing [15%], updates [14%], problems and advice [13%], social and praise [12%] and administration [2%] with only a minority of posts related to new ideas [6%]. Although idea generation responses may seem low, the value of these shared virtual water cooler conversations for sharing and providing input, creating new knowledge, problem solving, harnessing existing knowledge and moreover building the social fabric for healthy knowledge culture is insurmountable in a mobile world.
For some firms however, the leap to external platforms is more ‘wait and see’. A number of firms we interviewed stated that they were looking at social networking tools for collaboration and in particular Yammer, however they still hadn’t deployed the system. Others were looking at in-house solutions with bespoke internal web apps that integrate microbl ogging and corporate communications or using third-party platforms like Jive or Newsgator with microblogging capabilities.
Yammer discussion categories 13 12
Updates Problems and Advice
Social and Praise 15 Administration New Ideas 38
Figure 3: Enterprise Social Networking in Professional Service Work: A Case Study of Yammer at Deloitte Australia.2
Mobile Knowledge Management 7
“Mobile knowledge management requires a new culture paradigm due to the increased mobility of knowledge and people.”
Trust, the new commodity For organisations, letting go and waiting for the fruits of social networking comes down to a matter of trust. Most of the firms we interviewed admitted that there were some reservations from leaders about the value of social networking with concerns that it was a distraction to getting work done, equivalent to playing Angry Birds. Yet the more dynamic organisations we spoke with were looking at ways to integrate knowledge management, information technology and human resources to create inclusive social and mobile environments.
These organisations, recognising the importance of the ‘digital revolution’ and acknowledging that ‘people will do the right thing’, are responding with open access to social networking and apps such as Facebook and iTunes respectively, which were previously inaccessible through enterprise devices. Stephen Davie, Senior Consultant formerly from global engineering firm Arup, agrees that mobile knowledge management requires a new culture paradigm due to the increased mobility of knowledge and people: “It’s all well and good having mobile technology devices facilitating new ways of working but it has to be accompanied by a behavioural and cultural shift in the mind set of managers and clients.”
Mobile Knowledge Management 8
“Of all the organisations we spoke with, the majority had invested heavily in online training for staff”
Mobile learning Mobile learning is another beneficiary to the mobile knowledge revolution. Of all the organisations we spoke with, the majority had invested heavily in online training for staff with the more dynamic firms recording their training sessions as multi-media presentations, making them available on the intranet and remotely – but with some hiccups for modules built in flash. Wikis are also being rallied as a way to capture and share knowledge, with the advantage of ease of updating and remote access. However, not all organisations we interviewed agreed with the concept, with one firm noting that they disliked wikis because they believe the knowledge is ‘dehumanised’, breaking the link between people and content.
References 1 IBM (2012). Achieving success with a flexible workplace. May 2012. IBM Insights. http://www-935.ibm.com/ services/us/en/it-services/flexibleworkplace.html Riemer K, Scifleet P & Reddig R (2012). Powercrowd: Enterprise Social Networking in Professional Service Work: A Case Study of Yammer at Deloitte Australia. Kai Riemer +, Paul Scifleet ^, Ruwen Reddig # + The University of Sydney, BIS WP201202. http://ses.library.usyd.edu.au/ handle/2123/8352 2
Not to be outdone by the new kids on the block, traditional knowledge practices still have their value in the mobile world ensuring that knowledge is captured in a transferable and explicit form. The role of knowledge champions were prevalent in all of the organisations we spoke with; with some firms also having dedicated professionals in each practice area to harvest explicit and tacit knowledge together. Likewise communities of practice were still common in organisations, along with an acknowledgment that the ‘master apprentice’ model of learning should not be totally replaced by virtual initiatives. Helping to extract the unseen and transforming learning styles are key benefits from mobile technology, yet without trust and the foundation of traditional initiatives the knowledge iceberg cannot be unleashed.
Mobile Knowledge Management 9
THE WORK LOUNGE
Mobile knowledge management has empowered ‘work’ to become the verb that it always aspired to be. No longer just about the physical space, ‘work’ is now more focused on the activities performed, not the space. Called Activity Based Working (or what we at Woods Bagot call Real Time Working), these workplace environments acknowledge that on any given day, only 40 to 50 per cent of a typical office is occupied due to client meetings, travel, sickness or vacation; translating to wasted space and real estate costs1. Thus workplaces are being transformed to better meet required tasks and ways of working; creating mobile knowledge environments that are focused on connectivity, collaboration, sharing and getting the job done without the boundaries of time or distance.
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“Only 40 to 50 per cent of a typical office is occupied due to client meetings, travel, sickness or vacation; translating to wasted space and real estate costs1.”
The ideal workplace Yes, trends in workplaces have gradually evolved over the last few decades from office dominated, to cubicle workstations, to open plan. Yet not since the proliferation of mobile devices and technology platforms have these workplace changes really been able to make a difference to creativity, innovation and ultimately the performance of a business. The ideal mobile knowledge workplace is an environment similar to the airport lounge: diverse working areas with quick ‘touch down’ points, workstations and quiet meeting spaces; private hubs; open socialisation areas with the opportunity to bump into people; access to various multimedia and Wi-Fi; food and water on demand; and sister sites [or alternate and virtual working opportunities] across the globe; and, most importantly, the opportunity to access and deposit knowledge. For the mobile knowledge world, the humble workplace has become the work lounge. Several international technology companies such as Microsoft, Accenture and Nokia, along with Dutch insurance company Interpolis, have moved towards work lounge environments for over a decade, although Australian companies, in particular banks, have been slower to implement2. However more recently the changes in work style, mobility and the economic environment has forced the banking industry to dramatically changing their workplaces with Macquarie Group’s Shelley Street remodelling in 2008 and the Commonwealth Bank office refit in 2011 and National Australia Bank in 2012, both converting to real time working environments.
Keys to mobility Technology and mobility are key enablers to the work lounge. The GPT Group’s refit of its offices in Sydney’s MLC Centre is heavily reliant on technology systems, tools and platforms to enable seamless transition between activities. The new workplace features wireless networking across all three floors; unified communications framework with remote access to voicemail, email and meeting software; remote access to GPTs portal; 21 inch monitors and universal docking stations; Wireless Presenter software; Microsoft Office Communicator; interactive whiteboards; Live Meeting for online conferences with multiple parties sharing desktops; video conferencing and streaming to plasma screens within the environment and live streaming to GPT retail centres; and One Swipe Access Card for access to laptop and personal storage lockers3. Big 4 accounting firm, Ernst & Young, has gradually been transforming its work environments over the last decade. Most locations are now fully open plan and flexible, with the London headquarters featuring hot desking. Rooms hook up around the world with Smartboards on walls, which can be driven by mobile devices – simply draw on the iPad and it appears on the screen. Similarly, National Australia Bank’s Docklands offices in Melbourne feature open plan workspace with hot desking becoming more prominent. Interestingly, global engineering firm Arup is taking mobility to the next level with future plans for regional knowledge hubs. The idea is that staff can ‘check’ into suburban mobile offices instead of driving into the city.
Mobile Knowledge Management 11
“Being able to connect outside the physical workspace is paramount for a successful mobile knowledge environment.”
According to global office rental company Regus, mobile offices are not just a thing of the future. Regus provides private, semi-private, shared office hub and virtual offices worldwide, and is currently installing hubs in airports, train stations and even petrol stations throughout Europe4. Similarly in Dallas, Texas, WELD offers workspace, studio space and even event space for independent creatives and photographers to utilise instead of working from home10. Harder than it sounds But adapting to the physical and technology requirements of the work lounge is not as easy as it seems. Of the law firms we interviewed, most admitted that the legal profession is relatively conservative and has been slow to move towards open plan environments; the sentiment being reflected in the recent Colliers International 2012 Office Tenant Survey: Alternative Workspace Strategies – The Next Evolution11. However most acknowledge that mobile working is becoming more attractive. Being able to connect outside the physical workspace is paramount for a successful mobile knowledge environment. Organisations are responding with virtual socialisation initiatives to ensure staff remain engaged and focused. Deloitte is a prime example of building the virtual water cooler environment for their staff, in the form of Yammer. Conversely other firms have invested in exemplar mobile intranets with both social and formal knowledge transfer functionality and to make more productive use of transit time or otherwise dead time. Likewise law firm King & Wood Mallesons and Gilbert + Tobin are focused on making sure everything available internally can be accessed on mobile devices.
Culture critical Beyond the physical and digital elements, culture and behaviour are critical for seamless and successful transition into the work lounge environment. Acknowledging that the paradigm shift in the way people need to work and interact in the mobile workplace is so important that when Macquarie Group’s retail division moved into its activity based working environment, an 18-month process of educating employees about the new style of work practices2 was undertaken. Enabling trust, rather than setting rules, is part of the cultural change process. Jones Lang LaSalle’s Head of Corporate Consulting, Rajiv Nagrath, admits that when their business transitioned to an activity based working environment they initially created a set of workplace rules, only to condense them down to simple messages in the belief that setting rules was no better than the traditional assigned desk workplace model6. Mobile knowledge environments also impact leadership skills and style. Rating performance by hours at the desk is no longer relevant. Instead in a mobile world managers need to focus on output and engagement, leading staff towards outcomes, productivity and innovation.
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Chris Raia, vice president of organizational effectiveness at Unilever admits that the biggest barrier to agile work environments is winning people over, particularly leaders7: “The biggest barrier we deal with is convincing the leaders that it is a responsible way of managing people. We still have leaders who think it’s too much flexibility and people will take advantage of it, that it’s not great resource management. And we have to convince them the overall business case - that the increases in engagement of people, the financial savings, the environmental benefits, the enhancement to our diversity proposition … is worth the risk… The top priority is to implement the agile work practices first and then deal with workplace design.”
Transforming from physical to virtual, structured to flexible, grounded to mobile – or in other words, to a mobile knowledge management environment – is a complex design, technology, behaviour and knowledge based change process. However organisations are finding benefits of the change with increased staff engagement, retention and attraction rates9; with some organisations recording 20 per cent improvements in productivity and cost savings8. References 1 Kuang C (2010). How we’ll work in 2025. Fast Company. Cliff Kuang. 31 March 2010. http://www.fastcompany. com/pics/how-well-work-2025#8 Lee J (2012). A real estate firm sees potential in rejigging offices. The Age, Melbourne. Jane Lee. 4 July 2012. 2
Connecting technologies The impact of mobility on the technology team should also not be underestimated. The combination of different devices and remote locations make it a complex challenge to ensure staff are connected and productive at all times. Brigitte Ireland, Director, Knowledge Awareness & Learning Leader, admits that the challenge at Ernst & Young is to implement an agnostic mobile knowledge tool throughout the firm when different countries are on different mobile devices and their device contracts are not negotiated on a global basis. A recent IBM study8 of 675 CIOs and IT managers of large enterprise found that workplace ‘forward thinkers’ acknowledge that bring-your-owndevice (BYOD) is common and instead of restricting usage, are supporting a broader set of devices and operating systems. These flexible workplaces are implementing solutions such as virtualised desktop solutions to address service and support and cloud-based virtualisation.
IBM (2012). Achieving success with a flexible workplace. May 2012. IBM Insights. http://www-935.ibm.com/ services/us/en/it-services/flexibleworkplace.html 8
Stewart C (2012). Open plan, flexible office boost productivity. Australian Financial Review. 11 July 2012 9
Williamson C (2012). Modern Coworking: WELD Collaborative Work & Studio Space. 8 August 2012. Design Milk. http://design-milk.com/ modern-coworking-weld-collaborativework-studio-space/#ixzz25N90As5N 10
Property Australia Ezine (2012). ABW not for all work environments: Colliers. 12 August 2012. http://www. propertyoz.com.au/Article/NewsDetail. aspx?p=16&id=6240 11
GPT Group (2011). GPT’s Workplace for the Future. 10 August 2011 http://www.gpt.com.au/news. aspx?urlkey=nm_news&newsid=41229 3
Iyer P (2012). Whenever and whenever you need it, it’s there. The Weekend Australian. Padma Iyer. 23-24 June 2012. 4
Shave M (2011). Building’s flexibility breaks the office mould. The Australian. Margot Shave, 18 June 2011. http:// www.theaustralian.com.au/careers/ buildings-flexibility-breaks-the-officemould/story-fn717l4s-1226076698534 5
Ramli D & Keen L (2012). Activity based working is for adults only. Australian Financial Review. 11 July 2012 6
Raia C (2011). Chris Raia – the agile workforce. Chris Raia, Vice President of Organisation Effectiveness, Unilever. August 2011 http://www.youtube.com/ watch?v=sMiO4jsHRaI 7
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LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION.
Oh, knowledge where for art thou? The promise and performance of knowledge in the mobile world is compromised without a secure location and the ability to locate content easily. Frontline security The security challenge is increasingly complex and confounded with the proliferation of open source platforms, Bring Your Own Devices [BYOD] and the blurring of personal and work devices. In the 2012 UK study of 1,000 working adults, Good Technology found that nearly half of the professionals surveyed were using their personal phones for work1. Similar results would be expected for professionals storing personal content on their work devices. Thus, sensitive corporate information, confidential client data and irreplaceable personal content are being stored in the same location – the information technology department’s worst nightmare. IBM’s study2 of 675 CIOs and IT managers of large enterprises in Australia, China, India, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States, reported that security was the most significant and immediate challenge in the mobile knowledge workforce.
The biggest problem with BYODs is the organisation’s limited ability to successfully manage and secure employee-owned devices, in addition to the legal hurdles. In response, some organisations are trying to block the use of BYODs; whilst others are introducing initiatives such as device security, data encryption, pin-lock requirements, application security, BYOD policies and end-user training to manage the risk. Big 4 Ernst & Young has created an internal ‘app store’ app: a secure, one-stop portal that allows verified users to search and download the organisation’s internal apps specific to their personal devices. At one law firm confidentiality is top of mind with a recent update to their policy to encompass mobile knowledge. The firm also encouraged their staff to use work devices for work only and provided training for their professionals on how use them securely.
68% “68% of CIOs and IT managers rate security as most significant concern2.”
Another law firm interviewed indicated that their firm had a generic policy around security of documents which applied to mobile devices and the firm also had the ability to remotely wipe firm iPads. Interestingly, not all firms researched have introduced specific BYOD policies; citing confidential policies signed at induction sufficient. Instead social media policies that focus on reputational risk protection are seemingly more common. With the proliferation of BYOD’s in the workplace, a noticeable increase in the usage of online apps is also now appearing. These ‘free’ tools enable workers to manage, share, and collate information as they go about their work day. In most cases the user experience is better, however no one reads the end user licence agreements and you find you are signing away all your rights. Realistically people are going to continue to use them until they can have the same experience provided by their organisation. The challenge for many CIOs is to find one of these products that work across all bases which can fit into the enterprise architecture and stop the ‘IT bypass’ that many users are taking. Buyer beware Is free really ‘free’? Many open source products usually come with a free licence for a limited amount of time and/or functionality. Take for example Yammer, where individuals can easily set up a free Yammer account for their organisation and start microblogging activities with minimum effort. However, if that company then decides that the risk is high utilising the Yammer cloud to store their content, or they wish to introduce greater functionality and integrated searching, then there is a price to pay. At Yammer their cost model is based on a per user base so for larger organisations costs can be high.
If organisations allow staff to access these business apps, then consideration of policies and security around usage and content storage is critical. Imagine if a large amount of enterprise knowledge was stored on a collaboration tool, for example Posterous, and the online provider went into liquidation or was bought out by a third-party who introduced new terms and conditions. What happens to your organisations content? Can you be guaranteed access to this content and be safe in the knowledge that it will not appear in other environments? These concerns are real. Just look at the recent copyright controversy surrounding Instagram3 ownership of users’ images. Turf wars are already starting to play out between online sharing providers with the recent blocking of Instagram images on Twitter4. Who is to say that this type of behaviour will not happen with other online providers? How can organisations avoid this risk? In essence, by weighing up the benefits and costs of open source vs enterprise owned systems. In otherwords, acknowledging that the mobile world is not static. Brigitte Ireland, Global Knowledge Awareness & Learning Leader at Ernst & Young admits that it’s unlikely that the business will support enterprise wide third party cloud platforms due to risk and potential conflict of interest challenges. Searching across, not just within Fragmentation of knowledge is another concern for the mobile workforce. Being able to search across enterprise and even external platforms has become more important with the explosion of different apps and consequently places to store information.
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“If organisations continue allowing staff to access those business apps available readily from the app store, then they need to consider policies and security around usage and content storage.”
Colin McIvor, Group Knowledge Manager at WorleyParsons agrees, stating that searching across the enterprise is a ‘big issue’ for the firm. To combat this type of issue, Ernst & Young is well into their three-year journey to migrate their knowledge system from Lotus Notes to Sharepoint, in an effort to reduce fragmentation of information, improve search ability and enable greater mobility. Enterprise searching across all platforms needs to be included in any knowledge management tool, encompassing content database and micro blogging feeds in its roll out plan. Tagging of content is also crucial, whether by users or smarter search engines, context awareness or new technologies such as the semantic web. Effective knowledge mining to find experts and information already exists within many enterprises based search solutions, however to aggregate across a number of external platforms is a challenge. Phil Lloyd previously National Knowledge Management Director at Deloitte Australia and his team enabled one enterprise search over a number of internal and external sources, including Deloitte’s Yammer platform. Critical, he says, is a search engine that provides a whole view of all the data that matches the search string, thus reducing – but not eliminating - the reliance on manual or auto-tagging and semantic processing. Also, when selecting an external source to endorse for corporate use, the ability for an enterprise’s search engine to index the source is often over-looked.
However, supplying staff with the right information (whether internal or external sources), at the right time, at the right place is no longer enough. Now it is even more important that organisations, and in turn knowledge management professionals, also consider the experience of accessing knowledge. Without a good experience staff will look elsewhere, whether inside or outside the enterprise, bringing with it security, confidentiality, searching and ownership implications. Thus better solutions require working holistically with management, information technology, user-centred design, knowledge and culture to effectively and engagingly manage knowledge in a mobile world. References 1 Good Technology (2012). UK Workers put in three weeks overtime answering calls and emails at home. Good Technology 2 July 2012. http://www1.good.com/ news/press-releases/current-pressreleases/161098825.html IBM (2012). Achieving success with a flexible workplace. May 2012. IBM Insights. http://www-935.ibm.com/ services/us/en/it-services/flexibleworkplace.html 2
Hensher P (2012). Instagram: When do my pictures become their property? The Independent. Friday 21 December 2012. http://www.independent. co.uk/voices/comment/instagramwhen-do-my-pictures-become-theirproperty-8429449.html 3
Covert A (2012). Instagram kills its own pics on Twitter. CNN Money. 5 December 2012. http://money.cnn. com/2012/12/05/technology/mobile/ twitter-instagram/index.html 4
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ARE YOU READY
Thinking just about the technology is only the beginning of the mobile knowledge challenge. Has your organisation taken into account all facets of mobility? Is your organisation ready? Following is a checklist of the key areas that we think need to be taken into consideration. Does your organisation have: Strategy An enterprise mobility strategy, that includes all process, technology and people requirements of the organisation?
Knowledge Information technology, knowledge and marketing professionals keep abreast of new relevant external apps?
A senior leader who is accountable to the executive for delivering on the mobility strategy?
A mobile-enabled wiki to capture and share work and organisational knowledge?
An information technology team that supports and manages risk for a broad set of mobile devices and operating systems?
Communities of practice that are integrated with social networking capabilities?
Technology A secure mobile application platform to support searching and downloading of organisational specific apps? Consideration and development of enterprise apps and knowledge practices to distribute, share and search documents? Mobility tools for both physical and virtual meetings such as wireless Presenter software, recording software for teleconference and videoconferences and automatic notes download? Investment of tools and mobile learning applications to support online learning?
Traditional knowledge management practices that are sustained and heightened with mobile technologies and apps? Culture Workplaces designed for mobile workers including wireless, collaborative spaces, touch-down bays and co-working areas? Change management initiatives that educate leaders and staff on future mobile work practices? A focus on more collaborative conversations through social platforms instead of email? Trust behaviours demonstrated focusing on deliverables, not contact hours in the office?
Governance A bring your own device policy that encompasses security, loss and access requirements? Clear guidelines on where content should be stored? A process in place to test and review terms & conditions of third-party apps / maintained list of company endorsed external apps? A social media policy? WOODSBAGOT.COM
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ABOUT WOODS BAGOT
Woods Bagot is a global architecture and design studio. With a multi-disciplinary team of architects, interior designers, urban designers and consultants, Woods Bagot specializes in the design and planning of facilities across three practice sectors: Workplace, Education/Science and Lifestyle. Located across five regions: Asia, Australia, Europe, the Middle East and North America; Woods Bagot has no head office. Instead, our leadership is located across the globe – networking, collaborating and driving our vision to our people, clients and ultimately our designs. Knowledge at Woods Bagot Our vision: “Next Generation Global Studio” is underpinned by the collective knowledge, expertise, innovation and research of a global team. The vision is built upon two strategic pillars. Firstly we operate as a truly global organisation, what we call our ‘global studio’ strategy. Secondly, everything we do is underpinned by knowledge and research. Knowledge and research is, in essence, our mantra that defines how we deliver our work - without research and knowledge we cannot deliver intelligent designs. Over the last five years we have embedded this strategy across our organisation by: –– Defining a global knowledge management approach and resourcing a knowledge team to manage implementation.
–– Nurturing a virtual mobile communication and knowledge environment for professionals to collaborate, problem-solve, capture and share information and ideas across the globe. –– Developing and indoctrinating a project methodology, Design Intelligence Methodology, which defines each element of research, consultation and knowledge capture throughout the design process. –– Building a bespoke knowledge tool, Design Intelligence Portal, to capture and share intelligence, dialogue, compliance and designs for every project, across the organisation. –– Investing in pure and applied research; and providing specialists with authoritative research resources and design technologies to enable innovative design. Woods Bagot has been recognised for its enterprise-wide collaborative knowledge sharing with Most Admired Knowledge Enterprise Awards in 2012, 2011, 2009 and 2008.
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ABOUT THE RESEARCHERS Felicity McNish
Felicity McNish is the Global Knowledge Manager at architecture and design firm, Woods Bagot. Based in Adelaide, Felicity is responsible for the knowledge management and research activities of the company.
Susan Stewart has worked in professional services firms for over 15 years focusing on communications, strategy, marketing, business development and change management.
She has worked in the business information and knowledge management area for over 15 years in Australia and the United Kingdom. Prior to her current role Felicity undertook a knowledge and innovation role at APA group and before that an Asia Pacific knowledge management role for Ernst & Young and Cap Gemini.
In her role, as the Global Strategic Development and Change Manager, Susan works closely with leadership and peers to articulate and implement vision and organisational initiatives, providing change and communications advice.
Her specialist skills are in the development of knowledge strategies and implementation including change management, development and implementation of knowledge tools using SharePoint and Web next generation technology.
Susan previously worked at Ernst & Young as a Senior Manager in Communications and as a Communications and Change Management Consultant; and as Marketing Manager at the South Australian Film Corporation. She has a Masters of Arts [Communication Management] and is particularly interested in organisational culture and its impact on change.
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Published on Mar 1, 2013
With the onslaught of mobility, it’s the end of the world as we know it for the knowledge management community. In less than a decade mobile...