Implementation of knowledge management systems by firms in Nairobi
In the fast changing business environment, knowledge has become the mainstay of every organization in creating sustainable competitiveness. This study sought to investigate drivers of implementing Knowledge Management Systems (KMS), challenges faced during the process as well as the strategies that can be put into place to overcome these challenges. The study adopted a descriptive survey approach with a target population of all ICT consultancy firms established in Nairobi. The researcher took a purposive sample to select a sample of 30 ICT firms that have implemented Knowledge management Systems in various organizations. The targeted respondents were ICT heads and system developers. Primary data was collected using selfadministered questionnaires from these respondents. The respondents’ gender, age, profession, years of experience and firms’ years of operation were analyzed using descriptive statistics (frequencies, percentages, means and standard deviations) and cross tabulation. The drivers, challenges and strategies of Knowledge Management Systems implementation were also analyzed using descriptive statistics and factor analysis. The study indicated that ICT consulting firms in Nairobi conduct KMS implementation as well as other ICT solutions. From the response, the majority of the employees in these ICT consultancy firms are aged between 26-30 years of age with fewer female respondents at 37.5 % as compared to male who were 62.5 %. Further, the study showed that most of these employees were degree and masters holders indicating high literacy levels in the field of KMS implementation. A cross tabulation of level of education respondents & years of firm in consultancy indicates that firms that are new in the industry have employed more degree holders as compared to the ones that have been in the industry for long. The findings also indicated that there are driving factors that lead organizations into implementing KMS. These included the need to create and sustain competitive advantage, presence of Information Technology infrastructure, need to create innovation and leverage best practices as the key drivers. The study also revealed that this procedure faces challenges such as insufficient funding of Knowledge Management projects, knowledge loss through high turnover and lack of a knowledge sharing culture. To overcome these challenges, the findings also indicated that there are strategies that can be put in place which included provision of technical and organizational infrastructure, training the employees on the use information technology, management to provide a work environment where employees meet to share ideas and provision of lessons on the benefits of KMS to the management.