Marcante: In the organizations that have adopted enterprise collaboration, we are seeing more collaboration and increased knowledge retention. Success can be measured by a myriad of stories of how various organizations leverage the enterprise collaboration tools. One team moved from a completely email supported model to a community of practice, engaging in discussion forums and rating content based on quality and usefulness. Their content is retained and their internal clients search and discover content on their own. The team completely changed its own--and their clients'--behavior.
CIO.com: What advice would you give other IT executives/companies looking to implement social networking within the enterprise?
Meerschaert: Give it a shot and give it time. It can take months for it to catch on. People need to feel safe to go play, so keep it fun. Post things worth reading. If folks follow you on Twitter give them something to actually follow.
Marcante: It is not about the technology. It is about taking a collaborative and sharing environment and increasing its strength. To introduce enterprise collaboration, a company should start with the why--the business value that can be gained from enterprise collaboration.
Introduce the how slowly. Focus not just on the technology but on the cultural change. Understand that you are engaging in a marathon, not a sprint! The business value it will bring to your organization is well worth the effort. Persistent energy and a consistent message are needed to affect this cultural change.
Jennifer Lonoff Schiff is a contributor to CIO.com and runs a marketing communications firm focused on helping organizations better interact with their customers, employees, and partners.