This project explores actual practices of New Zealand industry regarding use of knowledge management (KM) in new product development (NPD). Research questions include: How can people be encouraged to share their knowledge? Which practices do employees prefer to access knowledge? Which parts of organisational culture are beneficial (harmful)? How can prior knowledge be accessed during projects?
Status: This work was done as a Masters project by Mr Volker Wochele, who has submitted his thesis and graduated, see electronic copy here http://hdl.handle.net/10092/5212. Journal Paper: not yet available. Implications for practitioners: It was found that all NPD companies used codification and personalization KM strategies to store knowledge and to make it accessible. However, a tendency towards a stronger emphasis on personalization was found. Particular knowledge sharing encouragements were identified that could result in a higher willingness of engineers to share their knowledge; supporting a communicative work-climate, setting up regular meetings for knowledge exchange and active encouragement to share knowledge. Apart from encouragements, survey and interview results also pointed out the importance of a clearly set direction for KM from management. Companies that were associated with successful KM did not only apply one particular KM process, but a combination of many. Engineers found that the most difficult situation in which to seek knowledge was from superiors, while the easiest was from peers.