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Return on Investment (ROI) for Knowledge Productivity


Turning Information into Improvement and Radical Innovation in the Age of AI

Productivity matters because it creates huge value. In some sectors, a five per cent uptick in productivity has coincided with up to a 50 per cent increase in total shareholder return (Financial Time, 2013). This would catch the attention of any CFO!

The ability to effectively leverage information and drive innovation is even more crucial for organizations productivity and to stay competitive. With the advent of artificial intelligence (AI), businesses now have unprecedented opportunities to turn information into tangible improvements and foster radical innovation. In this blog post, we will explore the concept of Return on Investment (ROI) for Knowledge Productivity and how it can be achieved by reducing digital friction, unifying information, and engaging employees with a human-centric digital workplace.

In this blog:

What is Return On Investment for knowledge productivity

Businesses have been trying to calculate the ROI of knowledge management investments for more than two decades, with few successes. Knowledge is a valuable asset that, when properly harnessed, can drive productivity, enhance decision-making, and spur innovation. Traditional approaches to knowledge management often fall short due to fragmented information, information silos, and limited accessibility.

Knowledge productivity is defined as “A process that entails signaling, identifying, gathering, absorbing, and interpreting relevant information, using this information to develop new capabilities and to apply these capabilities to incremental improvement and radical innovation of operating procedures, products, and services” (Kessels, 1996, 2001 as cited in Kessels & Poell, 2004, p. 146).

Ways to calculate ROI on knowledge productivity

ROI for Knowledge Productivity encompasses both tangible and intangible benefits, such as increased productivity due to time efficiency, improved employee engagement, enhanced customer experiences, improved decision-making, and innovation breakthroughs.

  1. Time Efficiency
    According to McKinsey & Company, employees spend 20% of their day looking for information they need to do their jobs.

    20% of the average staff members day is spent searching for what they need to do their job - is this the case in your organization?


    If you’re a company of 1000 people with an average salary of $60,000, you’re spending approximately $12M a year to employ your people to search for information!
  2. Data Management Engagement
    Save 15 to 35% by reducing duplicate data, unused paid feeds and with governance automation.
  3. Employee Engagement

Disengagement leads to decreased ROI

Disengaged employees cost the US economy approximately $350 billion per year in lost productivity, accidents, theft, and turnover. Organizations can improve corporate performance and employee retention by engaging their workforce.

See our infographic for more details on how to calculate ROI.

How to increase ROI on knowledge productivity

  1. Reduce Digital Friction
    Digital friction refers to the obstacles and inefficiencies that hinder the flow of information within an organization. These can include complex systems, outdated processes, and cumbersome interfaces. With the right digital workplace platform as well as leveraging AI, organizations can streamline information retrieval, automate routine tasks, and eliminate unnecessary steps, thereby reducing digital friction. This leads to significant time and cost savings, enabling employees to focus on value-added activities and fostering a more efficient and agile work environment.

    Does your organization have Digital overload - 8.8 hours a week reading and writing emails and 7.5 hours logging meetings - from WSJ article


  2. Reduce information overload
    The explosion of technology adoption comes in tandem with employees being dissatisfied with digital tools and the support needed for them, both of which are provided by IT.

    All organizations face the challenge of vast amounts of data and information dispersed across various platforms and systems. There are platforms that can unify information and AI can also help by extracting relevant insights and providing contextually accurate recommendations. By breaking down information silos and creating a centralized knowledge repository, organizations can enable cross-functional collaboration, drive innovation, and make informed decisions based on a holistic view of their data.

  3. Increase returns with a human-centric digital workplace 
    A human-centric work design continues to be the winning formula to not only attract and retain top talent, but to also make them more productive.

    A human-centric digital workplace places employees at the center of the knowledge ecosystem, empowering them to contribute, collaborate, and innovate. Technologies can enhance employee engagement by providing personalized recommendations, intelligent search capabilities, and interactive interfaces that adapt to individual preferences and work patterns. This fosters a culture of continuous learning, encourages knowledge sharing, and boosts employee productivity and satisfaction.

    Employees who operate in human-centric work models are 3.8 times more likely to be high performing, according to a survey by Gartner, Inc.

    ROI of Knowledge Productivity promo image


    See our infographic for more details on how to improve ROI with knowledge productivity.

    Download now >


In the Age of AI, turning information into improvement and radical innovation has become more attainable than ever before. Organizations can unlock the full potential of their knowledge by reducing digital friction, unifying information, and creating a human-centric digital workplace. This, in turn, enables organizations to achieve a remarkable Return on Investment for Knowledge Productivity. Embracing these transformative approaches empowers organizations to thrive in today's dynamic business landscape, driving continuous improvement, and fostering radical innovation.


Atlas: the game-changing platform that puts people first

By putting people-first, Atlas enables organizations to create a first-class employee experience for everyone to participate, know and achieve more.

Connect every employee with one platform that promotes collaboration, knowledge sharing and personalized communication.

  • Engage employees with personalized content, meaningful connections, and the resources they need to succeed.
  • Proven to help employees focus on what matters with quick access to expert knowledge and a frictionless route to answers.
  • Provides deep analytics to measure success and adoption.
  Try Atlas now

Relevant articles:

ROI of Knowledge Productivity promo image

Infographic: ROI of Knowledge Productivity

Did you know that highly engaged employees return 120% of their salary? Download our infographic on how to calculate, improve and drive ROI.

Download infographic

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