Workflow Management as Knowledge Management
By Mike Raia Posted March 3, 2016
We were recently named to KMWorld's "100 Companies that Matter in Knowledge Management" which awards "solutions designed to help users and customers find what they need whenever and wherever they need it … and what they need is the ability to access, analyze and share crucial knowledge." We'd like to feel we have an impact is in the second part of that statement "access, analyze and share crucial knowledge."
Integrify (and similar workflow management solutions) are designed to efficiently shuttle knowledge between people in a wide variety of scenarios while providing opportunities to add value along the way. Sometimes the value is as simple as providing simple approvals for things like new vendor contracts or project requests. Sometimes it's a more complex, involving collaboration between multiple departments, for instance on a new product idea, or a piece of content that will be subject to regulatory approval or even metadata for an entertainment listing on a Web site.
In any of these scenarios, the part workflow management plays is both the transportation and gatekeeper for knowledge and content. Back in the late 90's, when I was looking at a career in Knowledge Management, KM was most often viewed as a "repository" of knowledge, usually in the form of documents. Certainly, some systems had the ability to categorize and index documents, but many KM repositories were essentially little more than static, centralized folder structures. Even if more capabilities were available, most knowledge workers didn't use them. Obviously, that's changed quite a bit in the last decade.
In fact one of the amazing things about the list KMWorld has curated is that most of the terrific companies listed work in areas that run alongside, within or even separate from a document repository, providing everything from better knowledge sharing and collaboration to amazing ways of finding just the right content at just the right time. The focus has shifted from the document itself to what people need. The very notion of a "document" has more or less vanished, replaced by the more broad term "content." Content is dynamic, sometimes ephemeral and almost never the work of one individual. Content is most often an answer to someone's question.
These days knowledge workers have an unprecedented amount of knowledge a to sift through and we're proud to be listed among the companies making that knowledge more accessible, usable, valuable and just plain better.