Original Research

Social media affordances in sense-making and knowledge transfer

Fradreck Nyambandi, Andre C. de la Harpe
South African Journal of Information Management | Vol 24, No 1 | a1588 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/sajim.v24i1.1588 | © 2022 Fradreck Nyambandi, Andre C. de la Harpe | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 01 July 2022 | Published: 23 November 2022

About the author(s)

Fradreck Nyambandi, Department of Information Technology, Faculty of Informatics and Design, Cape Peninsula University of Technology, Cape Town, South Africa
Andre C. de la Harpe, Department of Information Technology, Faculty of Informatics and Design, Cape Peninsula University of Technology, Cape Town, South Africa

Abstract

Background: Social media (SM) affordances and knowledge transfer (KT) culture permit sense-making, sense-unmaking and insights into an organisational performance improvement strategy. The article provides an analysis of SM affordances and how they enable sense-making.

Objectives: The purpose of this article was to explore how SM can facilitate effective KT in an innovative business environment (IBE). The question inspiring the article is: How can the use of SM facilitate effective KT in an IBE?

Method: Twenty online interviews with experts from various organisations were used to gather qualitative data and make sense of the key concepts. Data extracted were thematically analysed using ATLAS.ti software.

Results: Mainstream academia concentrates more on the operational usefulness of SM, and not much is concentrating on how SM affordances facilitate social, organisational sense-making and KT from strategic level expert’s perspective other than the operational level.

Conclusion: Social media affordances are in the form of media richness, cost reduction, the meta-knowledge in community of practice, conversation frame-clues interlink, creativity, editability and creativity. The conversation leads to productive dialogue (PD) and KT.

Contribution of the research: The sense-making theory enables reconceptualisation of how SM affordances facilitate social, organisational sense-making and KT. Sense-making and KT are shaped by individual cognition, absorptive capacity, technology perceived ease of use (PEOU) as well as usefulness and the environment. The research is supportive to information and communication technology researchers and novice researchers in developing new knowledge and KT measurement and SM management strategies. This study is unique compared to the existing literature because of its exclusive and innovative approach regarding participant’s selection, data collection and methods.


Keywords

knowledge transfer; social media affordances; sense-making; innovative business environment

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