Most firms long ago developed systems for managing their knowledge. That is one of the things that made them firms, rather than just collections of individual practitioners. This used to be found in huge paper files with indexes.And I have had fun working with these, monsters years ago.
Digital technology created the opportunity to move this stuff into data bases. And it created a more complex knowledge management challenge. Firms with systems that more efficiently share critical data, ideas and strategies within and among practice areas have a competitive advantage.
So — who is in charge of this? Is it marketing driven or a back room toolkit? At best, it is the result of an ongoing collaboration that helps sell the firm as well as upgrade services. Where to get started? You might check out this video from Slaw. One aspect of the video is of strategic interest – will this help smaller firms that can more easily develop the best systems? I think so. Big firms have a head start, but they face bigger challenges in sharing knowledge internally. Still, getting smaller firms up to that high “KM” level will require a lot of work over time.