A case study on knowledge transfer at Serneke

Examensarbete för masterexamen
Master's Thesis
Design and construction project management (MPDCM), MSc
Peric, Natasa
The dynamic model of knowledge creation is based on the critical assumption that human knowledge is created and extended through social interaction between tacit and explicit knowledge. Knowledge is created by individuals and is then passed on to the organization through the knowledge spiral. This theory implies that organizations are incapable of creating knowledge on their own. However, many organizations attempt to collect tacit knowledge and transform it into codified information - usually in forms of documents, procedures, and manuals. Therefore, it is essential for organizations to have a well-developed knowledge transfer process to utilize the knowledge that exists within the organization long-term. In the context of the construction industry, there are many different disciplines interacting throughout the lifecycle of a project, making the industry knowledge intensive. Construction typically involves many processes and project participants, which is reflected in the highly fragmented nature of project implementation. A common method of knowledge transfer is to make knowledge explicit and store it in the form of computer programs and databases. Conversely, studies show that knowledge-based systems have difficulty transforming tacit knowledge into explicit knowledge. This study is based on the interest to investigate how a large construction company in Sweden manages knowledge transfer at an organizational level. Serneke, the company studied, currently invests in digitalization and a digital business operational system called VLS, which they believe will improve knowledge transfer in the organization. The study presents challenges with knowledge transfer in the construction industry, as well as challenges with the development of computer programs and platforms from the perspective of knowledge transfer. The results identify important elements in the process of improving knowledge transfer at Serneke. It is concluded that Serneke's investment in the development of VLS is an important step towards improving knowledge transfer within Serneke. VLS will facilitate knowledge transfer as it creates a common information structure across the organization. Furthermore, this study has identified that the SECI theory is applicable to many areas within the organization. Finally, it appears that the organization should work to promote factors that facilitate knowledge transfer.
Knowledge transfer, knowledge creation and transfer, knowledge transfer in construction industry, knowledge management in construction industry.
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