From Research to a Web-Based Interactive Tool: Knowledge Transfer Within Social Services Organizations

Despite growing scientific evidence on knowledge utilization and transfer, knowledge transfer remains a critical issue for organizations in the social services network. Among the underlying reasons behind this perpetual problem, according to our organizational partners, are the difficulty of choosing the right knowledge transfer activity and a lack of understanding of how to implement a proper knowledge transfer process. Hence, based on our partners' concerns and the principle that knowledge transfer activities should match the organizational context and goals, we, in partnership with a community of practice, worked for just over two years to co-construct a tool that would help organizations choose the right activity and implement a proper, comprehensive knowledge transfer process. We examined five knowledge transfer projects in four different social services organizations. In addition to these five case studies, scoping studies on specific knowledge transfer activities were conducted and 18 community of practice meetings were held, allowing us to identify a common trajectory for knowledge transfer projects in the social services network as well as common facilitators and obstacles to such projects. Among the results, we found that organizations are likely to minimize the importance of analyzing their context, repeatedly choose the same familiar knowledge transfer activities and proceed following a one-time evaluation of the level of satisfaction with the activities. Findings also revealed that knowledge brokers and/or specific task forces, a gradation of measures (activities) and continuous evaluation of the process and effects are key factors in the success of a knowledge transfer process. Findings gained through these different methodologies were used to co-construct "SACO," a web-based interactive tool to help social services organizations analyze their organizational context, choose the right set of knowledge transfer activities and implement them, identify the necessary support, and assess the knowledge transfer process as well as its impacts.

Mots-clés : knowledge transfer; web-based interactive tool; social services organizations; choice of activity