Purpose – An investigation of the importance of the knowledge of the key individuals in organisations, knowledge within organisations as well as customer capital and knowledge; and how these might impact on sustainable competitive advantage of small and medium sized enterprises. The key challenges for knowledge‐intensive SMEs are the identification, capture, storing, mapping, dissemination and creation of knowledge from different perspectives and for different purposes. Design/methodology/approach – Based on a thorough review of literature and field study, this paper presents and discusses the benefits of knowledge management (KM) for sustainable competitiveness in SMEs in surveying practices. A field study was conducted, involving 12 professionals from eleven organisations, of which 2 of the 11 organisations were surveying practices. Findings – The paper highlights the role of strategies, tools and techniques which might be of assistance. The paper concludes that managing knowledge assets in SME is not easy. It is an integrated and complex social process, which has culture, people, finance, technology and organisational structures at its core. The paper also notes that SMEs can benefit from effective KM practices for sustainable competitiveness. Research limitations/implications – Recommendations are offered to surveying practices that are already involved with formal KM initiatives and those SMEs that aspire to do so. Originality/value – An innovative study applying knowledge management principles to small and medium sized surveying practices.
Structural Survey – Emerald Publishing
Published: Feb 1, 2005
Keywords: Knowledge management; Small to medium‐sized enterprises; Surveying