The Dutch Ministry of Justice
The Dutch Ministry of Justice approached us to advise on the design and execution of a comprehensive, well-integrated know how strategy for the Dutch Judiciary, including the design of a centralized and shared business support function capable of servicing the courts and judicial organs. We were asked to develop a draft blue print for the organizational design of a new Knowledge Management function for the Dutch Judiciary. The addition in value of the current Know How function was sub-optimal.
We first compiled and analyzed the already available knowledge management instruments and tools at a national, regional and local level and identified the respective governance models and management structures. As a next step we identified all stakeholders, established their roles, tasks and responsibilities and researched the quality of the available know how services, data basis, information tools and IT systems. Structured interviews with different groups of users and staff engaged in the collection, selection and dissemination of know how (at various levels and with several institutions throughout the Judiciary) gave us a good overview of the user experiences, the perceived quality of the tools and delivery services and the added value.
We then continued by collecting leading practices from other professional services firms, including (international) law firms, shared this with all stakeholders and engaged in a series of brainstorming sessions with leadership, business support and judges addressing required functionality, user needs, operational excellence and quality control/monitoring related issues.
The core of our recommendations focused on the need to centralize certain crucial business support and operational Knowledge Management functions; improve the existing IT infrastructure and address the rather fragmented and localized approach when collecting, selecting and disseminating legal know how and information. We also addressed the working methods and culture of the Judiciary which negatively affected the effectiveness and quality of the existing know how processes and designed a much more streamlined collection and selection process with clear tasks, responsibilities and quality assurances by the main stakeholders. In essence, we recommended learning from the best practices of international law firms and tailored and transformed these practices into an integrated and aligned process for the Dutch Judiciary.