Transitional on/offboarding for knowledge transfer

Alex Danco explained in his newsletter how one of things that drove innovation in Silicon Valley was that when people changed jobs they were allowed to share their knowledge about their previous companies processes and practices.

The expectation was that this sharing would be bad for competition in the tech industry and for companies as it would make it harder to compete with other companies that knew how they did things.

Actually, it was a good thing for competition as people could improve their skills more quickly and companies could benefit from those skills. They were all in the same boat riding a rising tide.

It might not seem like it, but this is an inspiration for improving onboarding and offboarding of people in UK companies, and most especially charities and the charity sector, which has so much to gain from better knowledge sharing.

Instead of the current way, where someone hands in their notice and works for month or three before leaving their previous organisation, and then starting at their new job, the notice period could become a transition period.

Week 1 of the notice period would see them working 4 days at their current job and 1 day at their new job. Week 2 would be a 2/3 day split, and by week 4 they’d be working 1 day a week at their current job and 4 at the new one.

This would be underpinned by a knowledge sharing agreement between the two organisations so they can feel confident that they will get the benefits of this two-way knowledge transfer.

It would make the move from one job to another easier for the person doing it, and spread ideas and practices across the sector with a speed and scale never seen before.

If we want more innovative charities and a sector that can utilise knowledge more effectively and more quickly, then innovative practices like on/offboarding knowledge transfer partnerships could be a useful technique.