Uncertainties as Barriers for Knowledge Sharing with Enterprise Social Media

Matthias Trier, Magdalene Fung, Abigail Hansen

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingArticle in proceedingsResearchpeer-review


Transferring knowledge has become a key challenge for global organizations and social media offers new opportunities to digitalize and support this process. However, the successful implementation of a social media based knowledge transfer environment is marked by several uncertainties that can become a barrier for the participants’ adoption. There is only limited existing research studying the types of uncertainties that employees perceive and their impact on knowledge transfer via social media. To address this gap, this article presents a qualitative interview-based study of the adoption of the Enterprise Social Media tool Yammer for knowledge sharing in a large global organization. We identify and categorize nine uncertainties that were perceived as barriers by the respondents. The study revealed that the uncertainty types play an important role in affecting employees’ participation and willingness to share. We further derive necessary critical managerial interventions that ensure a successful ESM implementation for knowledge sharing.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 25th European Conference on Information Systems, ECIS 2017
Number of pages12
Place of PublicationAtlanta, GA
PublisherAssociation for Information Systems. AIS Electronic Library (AISeL)
Publication date2017
Article number104
ISBN (Print)9789892076553
ISBN (Electronic)9780991556700
Publication statusPublished - 2017
Event25th European Conference on Information Systems, ECIS 2017 - Centro Cultural Vila Flor, Guimarães, Portugal
Duration: 5 Jun 201710 Jun 2017
Conference number: 25


Conference25th European Conference on Information Systems, ECIS 2017
LocationCentro Cultural Vila Flor
Internet address
SeriesProceedings of the European Conference on Information Systems


  • Knowledge sharing
  • Enterprise social media
  • Uncertainties
  • Technology adoption
  • Qualitative research

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