Why a knowledge-sharing culture can be a competitive differentiator

  • Now on Now
  • Channing Bui
  • Solutions
  • 2023
February 17, 2023

Knowledge-sharing culture: man and woman smile at computer monitor on desk

A 2021 Deloitte study found knowledge management (KM) to be one of the top three issues influencing company success. According to the survey, 75% of organizations reported that creating and preserving knowledge across evolving workforces would be critical to their success over the next 12 to 18 months.

This is clearly a competitive advantage. Yet only 9% of surveyed organizations felt prepared to address KM. Blame that on the sudden shift to a remote workforce.

In the aftermath of the pandemic, traditional views of how to handle knowledge are changing. The new environment champions an iterative, knowledge-sharing culture that fosters a repeatable content creation and transfer process. An intentional environment like this is sustainable only when employees and processes are front and center.

Creating a knowledge-sharing program

The traditional approach to implementing a new KM system by migrating existing content generally doesn’t work. Automating the collection, sharing, and maintenance of data isn’t enough.

At ServiceNow, we found that taking the time to plan and make decisions upfront leads to a clean transition and implementation—and a more successful program.

This strategy became the foundation of our Knowledge Management solution. It supports a holistic approach (people, processes, and technology) that’s designed to increase employee productivity and engagement, promote knowledge sharing, and help power continuous improvement.

3 steps to knowledge management success

The first steps to a successful program should be embraced throughout any company:

1. Governance: To build an engaging knowledge-sharing culture, create a roadmap to clearly define goals, roles, and metrics. Then secure the support of leadership. Before we start rolling out any technology, we gather our stakeholders to clarify what we’ll deliver, who will be involved, and when it will be ready.


2. Implementation: Make sure the process and people aspects are finalized before moving on to the technology decisions. To help our rollout flow smoothly and efficiently, we pay attention to a few things.

For example, a common misunderstanding is that technology is the most important part of the project. It’s vital, but the people and processes are just as important. Technology should fulfill the needs of these other two components, not the other way around.


3. Operationalization: Focus on the fundamentals first, and your KM program will grow from a solid foundation. Then you’ll be ready to invest in automation and derive more value. As with anything in life, the foundation for successfully operationalizing a post-implementation KM program is to focus on the basics.

We were tempted to jump into advanced projects using AI and machine learning to dynamically create and associate content. But we knew we had a better chance at success if we honed the fundamental KM activities before taking on automated projects.


The knowledge-sharing culture has evolved. Organizations are realizing the ability to share knowledge accurately and quickly delivers real business benefits. You can take simple steps to build a thriving program.

Find out more about how ServiceNow helps organizations facilitate a knowledge-sharing culture.

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