Facilitating knowledge management through information technology in hospitality organizations

  • Okumus F
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Purpose - This paper aims to discuss how hospitality companies can facilitate knowledge management (KM) through information technology (IT). Design/methodology/approach - The paper is developed based on a synthesis of previous literature. Findings - Knowledge can be seen as one of the key assets for hospitality organizations. Therefore, KM can help hospitality organizations create and sustain a competitive advantage. Use of IT applications can assist in creating, storing, transferring and using tacit and explicit knowledge. Hospitality companies can use numerous IT tools in their KM practices, which include competency databases, decision support systems, online search systems, expert networks, e-mail, groupware, teleconference, intranet, WWW, document management systems, video conferences, data warehousing, and workflow software.Practical implications - Rather than looking at IT applications from a tactical and operational point of view, this article suggests that hospitality organizations need to view their IT initiatives strategically. It is important to search for synergies among IT applications and management practices to optimize these elements, and so that tacit and explicit knowledge from different functional areas and management levels can be created, stored, transferred, and used efficiently and effectively. To achieve this, hospitality companies not only need to create a supportive organizational culture and structure, but also train and motivate their team members to manage knowledge through IT applications.Originality/value - This is one of the first studies in the hospitality field that offers discussions and recommendations on how hospitality companies can better facilitate KM through IT. This paper provides discussions on potential challenges in utilizing IT tools in KM initiatives in hospitality organizations. The article further offers theoretical and practical implications, which should be useful for hospitality executives, researchers, educators, and students.

Author-supplied keywords

  • Competitive advantage
  • Dynamic capabilities
  • Hospitality
  • Hospitality services
  • Information technology
  • Knowledge management
  • Knowledge management system
  • Strategic management

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