Knowledge management is an systematic approach to information retention and dissemination within an organization. A practitioner of knowledge management aims to improve the day-to-day workings of an organization by insuring that any relevant information is succinctly packaged and available to those workers who need it.
Knowledge management employs two main functions: to document pertinent information, explicit or implied, and then communicate that information to others within an organization. The process by which knowledge management is executed depends on the type of company and the information itself.
This business strategy is touted as improving the effectiveness and productivity of a company. Some businesses cite increased performance, innovation and competitive advantage as the system's main benefits.
Many business sectors, including business administration, informational systems, library and information sciences, computer sciences, and public health, use knowledge management theory to help control and utilize the bulk of information they process.
Some organizations implement knowledge management with the creation of an Intranet, a computer network shared by the organization's workers. Within this network, employees electronically share information, such as databases, directories and reports, that could edify workers, allowing them to improve on daily operations, practices or policies.
The term was introduced in the 1990s, although the idea for the business discipline is considered to have existed in the 1970s.