Swissmedic, the Swiss Agency for Therapeutic Products, is a public institution of the Swiss government. It is affiliated to the Federal Department of Home Affairs. Swissmedic started its journey through Knowledge Management (KM) back in 2012. The company developed several KM tools such as wikis and CoPs. However, since its early stages, KM at Swissmedic has been primarily focused on the people who work for the organization. It is therefore not just a matter of deciding which tools to use to retain or transfer the employees’ knowledge. The real challenge is how to encourage and improve communication and collaboration between people within the organization. According to Swissmedic, managers are the primary drivers of the culture change. They support and communicate the required change, and employees take their cue from them (top-down). The first phase of development lasted from 2012 to 2014, with the aim of developing a shared management philosophy that takes account of the particular characteristics of a specialist organization and its protagonists – knowledge workers. The second phase in 2015-2016 was about training the management skills. The third phase, ongoing from 2017 to 2019 (expected), is about determining the values that are relevant to knowledge workers in a specialist organization. For Swissmedic these values are trust, reciprocity, appreciation, and interest. The commitment shown by the Executive Director was fundamental in this context. It was most important for the acceptance of the whole concept, and it enabled the institution to declare specific measures like a structured knowledge transfer as mandatory for employees moving positions. According to Swissmedic, it is essential to support the management in transferring and incorporating the lessons learned into their everyday work as well as to provide specific offers for their teams (e.g., recommended knowledge transfer, lessons learned, basic wiki courses, etc.).

Knowledge Management and cultural change in a knowledge-intensive public organization. The case of Swissmedic

Francesca Dal Mas;Andrea Garlatti;Maurizio Massaro
2018

Abstract

Swissmedic, the Swiss Agency for Therapeutic Products, is a public institution of the Swiss government. It is affiliated to the Federal Department of Home Affairs. Swissmedic started its journey through Knowledge Management (KM) back in 2012. The company developed several KM tools such as wikis and CoPs. However, since its early stages, KM at Swissmedic has been primarily focused on the people who work for the organization. It is therefore not just a matter of deciding which tools to use to retain or transfer the employees’ knowledge. The real challenge is how to encourage and improve communication and collaboration between people within the organization. According to Swissmedic, managers are the primary drivers of the culture change. They support and communicate the required change, and employees take their cue from them (top-down). The first phase of development lasted from 2012 to 2014, with the aim of developing a shared management philosophy that takes account of the particular characteristics of a specialist organization and its protagonists – knowledge workers. The second phase in 2015-2016 was about training the management skills. The third phase, ongoing from 2017 to 2019 (expected), is about determining the values that are relevant to knowledge workers in a specialist organization. For Swissmedic these values are trust, reciprocity, appreciation, and interest. The commitment shown by the Executive Director was fundamental in this context. It was most important for the acceptance of the whole concept, and it enabled the institution to declare specific measures like a structured knowledge transfer as mandatory for employees moving positions. According to Swissmedic, it is essential to support the management in transferring and incorporating the lessons learned into their everyday work as well as to provide specific offers for their teams (e.g., recommended knowledge transfer, lessons learned, basic wiki courses, etc.).
File in questo prodotto:
File Dimensione Formato  
Case_Study_final.pdf

non disponibili

Descrizione: Articolo definitivo
Tipologia: Documento in Pre-print
Licenza: Non pubblico
Dimensione 319.59 kB
Formato Adobe PDF
319.59 kB Adobe PDF   Visualizza/Apri   Richiedi una copia

I documenti in IRIS sono protetti da copyright e tutti i diritti sono riservati, salvo diversa indicazione.

Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11390/1137299
Citazioni
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.pmc??? ND
  • Scopus ND
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.isi??? ND
social impact