What’s your Knowledge DNA?

Monday, July 11th, 2005
Want to reduce information overload? Then you need an activity management system- at least that's the pitch by the folks at KnowledgeDNA. I recently met with Steve Strickholm, KnowledgeDNA's CEO, to discuss how his product can reduce information overload and provide group project and action management across organizational boundaries.

I'm particularly impressed by the project dashboards and the way that KDNA tracks completion of an item. Actions can be configured to require dual sign-off so that multiple parties must acknowledge completion, While it sounds like a lot of extra work, I can see how this might be used to reduce cycle time and improve accuracy in reporting.

Steve's got a clear grasp of a pain point in organizations: cross organizational collaboration. For my needs, he's going to have to address distributed workers in a disconnected world, or at least a world that works across a variety of devices and networks. Despite it's inherent inefficiencies, there's a reason folks continue to go back to email: it's ubiquitous, it works across devices, systems, and networks, and everyone uses it. I believe that KDNA must address this vital component or it may find that users vote with their keystrokes.

From my pre-meeting research, I was led to believe that KnowledgeDNA would install, perhaps as a gateway, at the perimeter of an organization;s email system and from there it would populate the tracking system with knowledge gleaned through passive observation. (At least, that's what I was hoping for.) The product does not do this - at least at this time. What it does do is take the conversation about projects and actions to a shared-space via a centralized web-based action management system. This is a connected model - no internet = no action management. E-mail is used primarily as the information update and invitation tool.

On the upside, by forcing everyone to login into the system via the web, all information is contained in one place, there's almost no overhead requirements, and the central nature of the system will allow project managers and users to access digital dashboards with real-time summaries of all aspects of project management

If you're looking for a web-based project and action management system and you are willing to switch your primary communications from e-mail to a shared-space, then I believe KDNA is a tool worth looking at.

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