Knowledge vs. content management

Depending on whom you talk to, knowledge management can encompass everything from chat rooms to business analysis tools, making an exact definition hard to pin down. Especially blurry is the distinction between knowledge

management and its information-control cousin, content

management.

"Content management is really about moving documents through the entire process of drafting, approval and publishing," said Tony Byrne, principal and founder of CMSWatch, owned by CMSWorks Inc. Knowledge management "is not just the document itself, but how users are interacting with that document."

Because both strategies center around handling content, the two are inextricably linked in terms of software and practices, he said. Content management "has traditionally been a software category in search of better disciplines, design patterns and universally acknowledged good practices. [Knowledge management] has traditionally been an intellectual discipline in search of good software."

Byrne said that knowledge management software has historically revolved around search and retrieval tools, which users sometimes find unsatisfying. "This has inevitably led search vendors on a Sisyphean quest for better search technologies, which, unfortunately, never seem to keep up with the growing volume and complexity of content produced by the enterprise," he said. "More recently, the [knowledge management] community has glommed onto collaboration tools to support communities of practice."

About the Author

Alan Joch is a freelance writer based in New Hampshire.

Featured

  • Cybersecurity

    DHS floats 'collective defense' model for cybersecurity

    Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen wants her department to have a more direct role in defending the private sector and critical infrastructure entities from cyberthreats.

  • Defense
    Defense Secretary James Mattis testifies at an April 12 hearing of the House Armed Services Committee.

    Mattis: Cloud deal not tailored for Amazon

    On Capitol Hill, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis sought to quell "rumors" that the Pentagon's planned single-award cloud acquisition was designed with Amazon Web Services in mind.

  • Census
    shutterstock image

    2020 Census to include citizenship question

    The Department of Commerce is breaking with recent practice and restoring a question about respondent citizenship last used in 1950, despite being urged not to by former Census directors and outside experts.

Stay Connected

FCW Update

Sign up for our newsletter.

I agree to this site's Privacy Policy.