Manufacturing Insights Predicts Web 2.0 Collaboration Technologies Will Mitigate Disruption Wrought By A Departing Workforce

FRAMINGHAM, MA – October 30, 2008 – Leading independent research and advisory firm Manufacturing Insights, an IDC company, today announced the release of a new study, Web 2.0 – The Inflection Point For Knowledge Management. This Manufacturing Insights report addresses issues concerning knowledge attrition caused by the aging and departing workforce; a demographic event that presents adverse effects on corporate enterprises and their customers. The trend of knowledge deficit as a result of workforce attrition is consistent across manufacturing sectors such as aerospace, defense (government agencies), automotive, high tech, and the energy/utilities sector.

According to this Manufacturing Insights report, the merging of several factors, such as an aging workforce, an ever increasingly reliable commercial Internet, and an evolved technology set of Knowledge Management (KM) tools makes the current Knowledge Management iteration different from collaboration technology movements of the past.

The report offers context for those tasked with defining, structuring and deploying Knowledge Management strategies, through the exploitation of Web 2.0 collaboration technologies. Manufacturing Insights believes that the confluence of business drivers, demographic realities, and emergence of commercially viable Web 2.0 technologies will make the future versions of Knowledge Management more likely to succeed than previous efforts.

"The coalescence of the aging workforce and the increasing viability of Web 2.0 technologies will drive corporate Knowledge Management initiatives. These initiatives will assist manufacturers confronting the current and future challenges presented by knowledge deficit and personnel attrition," said Benjamin Friedman, research manager at Manufacturing Insights and author of the report.

Furthermore, the report examines how the landscape of Knowledge Management applications has evolved. According to the report, corporations should consider pursuing Knowledge Management initiatives that are hybrid in nature, as opposed to traditionally rigid, highly structured technical Knowledge Management approaches of the past. To be successful, organizations should focus on Knowledge Management initiatives that offer a mix of structure and prescriptive elements, such as Case Based Reasoning, combined with informal solutions that offer information flow at the speed of thought interactivity, such as Instant Messenger (IM). This approach to Knowledge Management delivers agility in decision making and knowledge re-use opportunities over the long term.

For more information on this report or to set up a press briefing with Benjamin Friedman, contact Sarah Murray at 781-794-3214 or email Clients of the Manufacturing Insights research advisory service(s) may download the report and non-subscribers are encouraged to contact Manufacturing Insights to discuss how this research fits into their own technology investments and ongoing go-to-market services. Contact

About Manufacturing Insights, an IDC company

Manufacturing Insights, an IDC company, provides business and information technology (IT) decision makers with fact-based research and analysis to inform and support critical business decisions. The global independent research and advisory firm closely follows processes associated with the design, development, and distribution of goods across markets, including discrete manufacturing, process manufacturing, high tech/electronics manufacturing, consumer packaged goods, and retail. Manufacturing Insights' research and analysis is critical for end users, as well as hardware and software vendors, service providers, and purveyors of IT outsourcing. Manufacturing Insights is headquartered in Framingham, MA. IDC is a subsidiary of IDG, the world's leading technology media, research, and event company.

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