Retention of critical knowledge for Rijkswaterstaat, a part of the Dutch Ministry of Infrastructure and the Environment

DNV GL provides a powerful long-term methodology for an agency of the Dutch Ministry of Infrastructure and the Environment

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Jeroen Alberts Jeroen Alberts
Senior Consultant: Knowledge Management Competence Centre
Retention of critical knowledge


Rijkswaterstaat, a Directorate within the Dutch Ministry of Infrastructure and the Environment, is in charge of Public Works and Water Management. Rijkswaterstaat is responsible for the sustainable development and maintenance of the national system of roads and waterways. 

The Directorate has an annual budget of over €2 billion and employs more than 9,000 highly experienced and uniquely skilled professionals. The average age of the employees is relatively high, and consequently the organization is facing a huge risk of losing exceptional experience and expertise through retirement and job changes. 

DNV GL solution

DNV GL was asked to provide a methodology to enable facilitators and line managers to effectively manage a knowledge-retention process. 

Rijkswaterstaat and DNV GL co-developed a six-step methodology with supporting tools to assess and identify critical knowledge; plan and execute the knowledge transfer; and validate that knowledge was retained and reusable.

Outcome and benefits

The methodology and supporting toolbox were piloted and validated with the customer and then documented and bundled into the “Knowledge Survival Kit” – a handbook for line managers and others.

Rijkswaterstaat has deployed the “Knowledge Survival Kit” and embedded the competencies needed internally.