The Road and Traffic Authority (RTA) is providing more public utility services and the stated objective of knowledge management initiatives in RTA is to make the organizations’ functioning more effective so that it becomes better and error-free ‘record keeping’ for the public at large. But on the other hand, the stated objective of Frito Lays is to network the sales teams in such a manner that the sales objectives for the company are met and the level of employee turnover prevailing in the department is reduced. Therefore, it was more of an organizational exercise that also helped in providing an adequate focus on high-value customers like corporate clients.
There is also a difference in the information content and the users of the KM systems being implemented in the two organizations. The RTA’s information system is being used in good measure by the general users, the call center executives, and the company officials in varying degrees of access rights. The system for Frito Lays on the other hand is being used by the sales teams and the company officials for deciding future strategies. The input to any knowledge management system decides to what extent the system is enriched with information and what type of database and information are available on it.
For RTA, the basic information is gathered from the call center executives, the traffic cops, the general user, and the RTA officials while the input for Frito Lays is gathered mainly from the sales and the HR departments. The salespeople came out with their problems in getting updated info about the deals, communication with the bosses, feedback from the recent sales, market trends, etc. The HR department on the other hand helped in providing useful information about the sales person/s.
Similarly, the features that are available to the organizations after the implementation of the KM system vary in both departments. For the RTA, stamp duty calculations became easier and error-free, news items are available to the relevant users, interaction with the call center executive and other employees became prompter and much more effective, web statistics helped in further updating the most useful pages and links.
For Frito Lays, devising effective marketing communication campaigns became easier, coordination amongst team members spread in far-flung areas became more effective, access to relevant sales figures became easier for the salespersons, taking guidance and directions from the headquarter became less time consuming, assessing the effectiveness and efficiency of the workforce became easier for the managers, company’s cost incurred on frequent recruitment and training were curtailed, the retailers too are a happy lot now. In addition, co-promoting and co-merchandising of multiple products which are consumed together, e.g., ‘carbonated beverages and salty snacks’ have also been made possible with the new KM initiative.