A major challenge of any knowledge management system is to meet the varied needs of diverse constituencies, both internal and external. Comprehensive, integrated systems are costly to develop, may take considerable time to implement and often lack adaptability. For technical knowledge management related to bit development and application, ReedHycalog has avoided these limitations by employing a range of modules that meet specific needs. The comparatively narrow focus of each of these applications minimises development and maintenance costs, allows rapid introduction, and permits quick adaptation to changing needs. Integration of these diverse packages is achieved through a common software interface and established company practices, supported through user training.

This paper explores the character of ReedHycalog's principle knowledge management modules; we consider how the systems position the company to be better able to create lessons learned, and to establish best practices; we demonstrate the adaptability of the approach in the rapid introduction of a product development monitoring system; we examine, as an example of routine engineer usage, how the user interfaces with each module to produce a technically sound client product proposal.

Such an approach, using the best solutions for specific needs, yet integrated through a designed culture of accessibility and training, delivers a low cost, flexible knowledge management system. This discrete modular solution is a viable and effective alternative to a fully integrated knowledge management system.

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