ATD Blog

Knowledge Management: A Key Element to Your Talent Strategy

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

We all know that talent development is a multifaceted process. Training is certainly one of the major ways we deliver new skills and knowledge to employees, but it’s becoming quite apparent that training can’t do it all. If employees required training—including e-learning—to learn everything they needed to know to be successful on the job, they would be in class all the time! 

The reality is that people only learn about 10 percent of what they need to know through courses. Another 20 percent of learning occurs through coaching and mentoring with peers and experts. However, a whopping 70 percent of learning takes place on the job through a variety of approaches that enable employees to access information during the moment of need. 

This is where knowledge management comes into play. With so much dynamic information available and so little time to learn, we must be much more proactive in how we deliver the right content, at the right level of detail, to the right people, at precisely the right time.

Knowledge management uses a number of technologies and processes to assure that the right information is available when needed. Identifying the right content, organizing it logically, keeping it relevant and up-to-date (content curation), making it easily available, and evaluating its impact are all part of knowledge management. 


Given the challenges and the urgency of keeping up with the knowledge explosion—inside the talent development industry, as well as in general—talent managers, business leaders, and training specialists of all kinds can truly benefit from developing a comprehensive knowledge management strategy. 


Bottom line: Talent management and learning leaders need to have a broader perspective of what knowledge management is and what it can do. You need to be able to have meaningful discussions with your team and clients about how knowledge management strategies can augment your organization’s learning strategy. 

Enter the ATD Knowledge Management Certificate Program. Not only does it review a general overview of  best practices that will enable you to begin the process of developing a knowledge management strategy in your organization, it also lays out guidelines to help you build the knowledge resources and systems your people—and your organization—need to be more productive, better serve customers, and win in the marketplace. 

Join me at TechKnowledge 2015 in Las Vegas, Nevada, for my next Knowledge Management Certificate.

About the Author

Dr. Marc J. Rosenberg is a leading management consultant, speaker and educator in the fields of training, organizational learning, e-learning, knowledge management and performance improvement.  He is the author of the best-selling books, E-Learning: Strategies for Delivering Knowledge in the Digital Age (McGraw-Hill), and Beyond E-Learning: Approaches and Technologies to Enhance Organizational Knowledge, Learning and Performance (Pfeiffer).  His monthly column, “Marc My Words,” appears in the eLearning Guild’s Learning Solutions online magazine.  Marc is past president and honorary life member of the International Society for Performance Improvement (ISPI), a recipient of the prestigious Guild Master award from the eLearning Guild, and holds a Ph.D. in instructional design, plus degrees in communications and marketing.  He also holds the Certified Performance Technologist (CPT) designation from ISPI.  Dr. Rosenberg has spoken at The White House, debated the future of e-learning at Oxford University, keynoted numerous professional and business conferences around the world, authored more than 50 articles and book chapters in the field, and is a frequently quoted expert in major business and trade publications.  He is a former vice president of his local community’s Board of Education.  More information about Marc is available at

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