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Article

Miikka Palvalin and Maiju Vuolle

The purpose of this paper is to introduce and evaluate methods for analysing the impacts of work environment changes. New working practices and work environments present…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to introduce and evaluate methods for analysing the impacts of work environment changes. New working practices and work environments present the potential to improve both the productivity and the wellbeing of knowledge workers, and more widely, the performance of organisations and the wider society. The flexibility offered by information and communication technology has influenced changes in the physical environment where activity-based offices are becoming the standard. Research offers some evidence on the impacts of work environment changes, but studies examining methods that could be useful in capturing the overall impacts and how to measure them are lacking.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper concludes research of the last five years and includes data from several organisations. The paper presents and empirically demonstrates the application of three complementary ways to analyse the impacts of knowledge work redesigns. The methods include: interview framework for modelling the potential of new ways of working (NWoW); questionnaire tool for measuring the subjective knowledge work performance in the NWoW context; and multidimensional performance measurement for measuring the performance impacts at the organisational level.

Findings

This paper presents a framework for identifying the productivity potential and measuring the impacts of work environment changes. The paper introduces the empirical examples of three different methods for analysing the impacts of NWoW and discusses the usefulness and challenges of the methods. The results also support the idea of a measurement process and confirm that it suits NWoW context.

Practical implications

The three methods explored in this study can be used in organisations for planning and measuring work environment changes. The paper presents a comprehensive approach to work environment which could help managers to identify and improve the critical points of knowledge work.

Originality/value

Changes in the work environment are huge for knowledge workers, but it is still unclear whether their effects on performance are negative or positive. The value of this paper is that it applies traditional measurement methods to NWoW contexts, and analyses how these could be used in research and management.

Details

Journal of Corporate Real Estate, vol. 18 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-001X

Keywords

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Article

Miikka Palvalin, Antti Lönnqvist and Maiju Vuolle

The potential of information and communication technology (ICT) in improving knowledge work productivity is well‐documented in the existing literature. However, prior

Abstract

Purpose

The potential of information and communication technology (ICT) in improving knowledge work productivity is well‐documented in the existing literature. However, prior research fails to provide means for analyzing whether the potential can be realized in a specific organizational context. Thus, this paper aims to focus on the context‐specific analysis of the impacts of ICT services on knowledge work.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper uses a literature review and a case study conducted in a medium‐sized European teleoperator company. The case study examines the measurement process for capturing the knowledge work productivity impacts produced by a new ICT service used by the company.

Findings

ICT can be used to eliminate non‐value‐adding tasks or to make them more efficient. ICT can also improve employee welfare, for example, through transforming the content of work by deleting unimportant activities. The empirical study showed that, contrary to the view presented in the prior literature, it does not seem that difficult to measure the impacts of ICT on knowledge work productivity. A key point in the measurement is identification of case‐specific impact factors by examining the characteristics of the ICT service and the organisational setting.

Practical implications

The results of the paper will be useful for managers studying the impacts of ICT investments in their organizations.

Originality/value

This paper contributes to the prior literature on ICT and knowledge work productivity by explaining how the impacts of ICT can be analysed in a given empirical context. The specific novelty value of the study lies in the new knowledge concerning the identification of the impact factors.

Details

Journal of Knowledge Management, vol. 17 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1367-3270

Keywords

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Article

Miikka Palvalin, Maiju Vuolle, Aki Jääskeläinen, Harri Laihonen and Antti Lönnqvist

New Ways of Working (NewWoW) refers to a novel approach for improving the performance of knowledge work. The purpose of this paper is to seek innovative solutions…

Abstract

Purpose

New Ways of Working (NewWoW) refers to a novel approach for improving the performance of knowledge work. The purpose of this paper is to seek innovative solutions concerning facilities, information technology tools and work practices in order to be able to “work smarter, not harder.” In order to develop work practices toward the NewWoW mode there is a need for an analytical management tool that would help assess the status of the organization’s current work practices and demonstrate the impacts of development initiatives. This paper introduces such a tool.

Design/methodology/approach

Constructive research approach was chosen to guide the development of the Smart ways of working (SmartWoW) tool. The tool was designed on the basis of previous knowledge work performance literature as well as on interviews in two knowledge-intensive organizations. The usefulness of the tool was verified by applying it in four organizations.

Findings

SmartWoW is a compact questionnaire tool for analyzing and measuring knowledge work at the individual level. The questionnaire consists of four areas: work environment, personal work practices, well-being at work and productivity. As SmartWoW is a standardized tool its results are comparable between organizations.

Research limitations/implications

SmartWoW was designed a pragmatic managerial tool. It is considered possible that it can be valuable as a research instrument as well but the current limited amount of collected data does not yet facilitate determining its usefulness from that perspective.

Originality/value

This paper makes a contribution to the existing literature on knowledge work measurement and management by introducing an analytical tool which takes into account the NewWoW perspective.

Details

International Journal of Productivity and Performance Management, vol. 64 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1741-0401

Keywords

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Article

Maiju Vuolle, Antti Lönnqvist and Jacques van der Meer

This paper aims to examine the measurement of intangible aspects of research and development (R&D) projects, particularly from the funding organization's point‐of‐view.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to examine the measurement of intangible aspects of research and development (R&D) projects, particularly from the funding organization's point‐of‐view.

Design/methodology/approach

A literature review on R&D measurement is carried out in order to identify the intangible factors to be measured as well as potential indicators. The practical applicability of the measures is discussed in light of an exploratory case study.

Findings

Lists of intangible inputs and outputs of R&D projects are presented along with some potential measures. The assessment of the intangible aspects of R&D projects is considered important for the funding organization. However, the current measurement practices are inadequate.

Research limitations/implications

The results provide a summary of the current status of the topic and a basis for further research.

Originality/value

The knowledge about the intangible aspects of R&D projects summarized in this paper has been scattered before in a wide set of previous research literature. The evaluation of the existing measures provides valuable information for understanding the development stage of this academic and managerial discipline.

Details

Measuring Business Excellence, vol. 13 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1368-3047

Keywords

Content available

Abstract

Details

Journal of Corporate Real Estate, vol. 18 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-001X

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Article

Karim Moustaghfir and Giovanni Schiuma

This introduction paper to the special issue on “The twenty‐first century knowledge‐based value drivers of innovation and sustainable development” aims to focus on such

Abstract

Purpose

This introduction paper to the special issue on “The twenty‐first century knowledge‐based value drivers of innovation and sustainable development” aims to focus on such relationships between knowledge, learning, capabilities, innovation and competitive advantage in different forms of organization: businesses, clusters and regions. The purpose is to point out the conceptual pillars and contribute to the ongoing debate on: how knowledge assets impact organizational performance, what are the characteristics of such value‐generating processes, what factors affect the process of building organizational capabilities and distinctive competences, and how organizations translate specific capabilities into sustainable competitive advantages.

Design/methodology/approach

The article is based on a thorough analysis of the management literature addressing the nature, role and relevance of knowledge, organizational capabilities, learning and knowledge management for organization competitiveness. The conceptual background sets the foundations for a better understanding of the strategic importance of knowledge‐based value drivers for innovation and sustainable organizational value creation.

Findings

As knowledge management is establishing itself as a research discipline, it is fundamental to define the conceptual pillars grounding the application of knowledge management initiatives for innovation and business performance improvements. This paper provides a framework summarizing the key assumptions at the basis of understanding the strategic relevance of knowledge‐based value drivers for growth and competitiveness.

Research limitations/implications

In addressing some of the questions posed, this article provides some implications for future research that build on different perspectives and emphasize the importance of adopting multi‐disciplinary approaches to disentangle the complexities of how organizations convert knowledge resources to a long‐lasting competitive advantage.

Originality/value

This editorial presents the key conceptual pillars explicating the role of knowledge resources as building blocks of organizational capabilities and how firms can develop and maintain their competences by promoting and nurturing learning processes. The value of this paper is the definition of a conceptual framework outlining the relationships between knowledge management, organizational capabilities, organizational learning and competitiveness.

Details

Journal of Knowledge Management, vol. 17 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1367-3270

Keywords

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