Intellectual Capital Management
The intangible nature of many knowledge products and processes, in combination with the increasing importance of their value in corporate balance sheets leads to a growing interest in management of intellectual capital.
Traditionally, ICM as a discipline has been divided among IP lawyers and professionals, business managers and consultants, and accountants. Intellectual property professionals limit their attention to the knowledge assets that can be codified and legally protected. They mainly focus on business strategies and techniques that enhance the commercial exploitation of the IP in question. Those with human resources and information technology (IT) backgrounds, however, prefer to call it KM and focus on sharing knowledge that an organization has both in its practices and databases, and that it knows is stored in employees’ and customers’ heads. Research and development (R&D) and product development people focus mainly on managing the innovation and research process to produce the most efficient results, while accountants mainly experiment with designing metrics to measure IC to enable better investment decision making.
Since the 1950s, managers from various disciplines have developed a number of management models and approaches to strategically manage intellectual capital, in search of a competitive advantage. R&D management, human resource (HR) management, total quality management (TQM), just-in-time (JIT), and, more recently, conversation management are all approaches attempting to manage one form or another of IC. In today’s ICM terms, R&D manages human and process capital, HR manages human capital, and both TQM and JIT manage process and structural capital.
The IC of an organization comprises such intangible resources and assets that an organization can use to create value by converting it into new processes, products, and services.
It is the knowledge, experience, and brainpower of employees as well as knowledge...