Knowledge Management (KM) has been experiencing a revival since the 2000s when there was hype around the function. Most law firms are now considering this function.
Firms that are exploring KM should be mindful that the function is not feasible without document management. Document sharing in most firms is very poor, making it hard for junior lawyers to resort to various searches to look for specific legal contract templates. The situation is more like trying to run before you can walk.
Document Management Vs Knowledge Management
Well-structured and a good DM process should underpin the program for any KM initiative to be effective. Unfortunately, some firms do distinguish between KM and DM systems. Basically, a Document Management system is a central repository where a firm classifies and stores the various types of documents produced by its lawyers within a designated matter workspace.
On the other hand, a Knowledge Management system is a repository of selected documents containing authoritative information classifications. A KM system illustrates several things including which lawyers worked on a particular document, what legal information is applied, and other lawyers that have accessed the document.