On Not Forgetting the Business


I like this framework. It comes from AGIMO’s new guide The Australian Government Business Process Interoperability Framework which was launched at the IIM conference a couple of weeks ago. AGIMO is the Australian Government’s Information Management Office (read Government CIO’s office) which is odd, because the guide has been out since July and still isn’t published in electronic form on AGIMO’s website (and the site search sucks by the way). So much for the digital economy. Here’s the ISBN if you want to order an old world copy: 192118244X.

It’s a maturity framework, evidently. And it looks like it could work as a KM framework, doesn’t it, especially in that low efficiency, low effectiveness quadrant down at the bottom left? It’s actually intended to be a framework for moving towards joined-up government, to help agencies align their business processes in the direction of better, more integrated and more coherent citizen services. To this end it’s a very useful resource, with maturity indicators to help you plot your progress and set pragmatic goals (though the case studies are a bit thin) and for some weird reason (remember it’s an information management agency) information management doesn’t figure in the indicators.

I liked it because it works for me within an organisation as well as between organisations (which is what it was originally intended for). It’s a framework for mapping the coordination ability of an organisation, especially a large one. Coordination has all sorts of organisational effectiveness implications, such as cost of repetition and re-work, mistakes big and small in failures to hand-off work successfully, inconsistent information provision and treatment of customers and stakeholders, and so on. The issues of joined-up government are only marginally different from the issues of joined up large enterprises. Coordination effectiveness can bestow critical competitive advantage and its lack can lead to devastating failure.

So often in knowledge management we get wrapped up in KM frameworks and KM processes and KM stuff. We are so preoccupied with building and explaining frameworks about knowledge creation, knowledge transfer and knowledge utilisation, that we forget this is all supposed to be happening for a reason. KM (and IM) are supposed to be at the service of the business. And that’s why I liked this framework, because it looks at one of the critical things that an organisation needs to do in order to be effective, and it allows you to figure out the KM and IM implications supporting that. So AGIMO, despite your slowness, your antiquated processes and apparent IM blindness, I thank you for this.

1 Comment so far

Patrick Lambe

The Framework is now available for download in soft copy from this URL:

Thanks to James Robertson of Step Two designs for the link

Posted on September 28, 2007 at 03:50 PM | Comment permalink

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