Study finds enterprise 2.0 reaps results

Successful use of social technologies is demonstrated in three use cases

By Michael Ansaldo, PC World |  Unified Communications, collaboration, enterprise 2.0

  • Enterprise Q&A -- the ability for employees to ask and answer questions across the organization -- was the most popular social business initiative of the three studied, with 29% of respondents reporting an enterprise Q&A system was already in place in their company.
  • A 60% satisfaction rate was reported among organizations with rewards-based enterprise Q&A.
  • Open innovation -- defined as technology to support the involvement of people both inside and outside the company in innovation processes -- is widespread, with 26% of respondents saying they're already engaging in some form of it. It's also reaping big dividends: 48% of respondents report that open innovation has yielded "major changes" to internal processes, and 34% report the same for their external offerings.
  • The use of Enterprise 2.0 tools to improve collaboration between sales and marketing was the least adopted initiative in the study. But of those respondents who are actively pursuing it, 60% reported significant gains in knowledge sharing and communication.

User perspectives throughout the paper offer interesting glimpses into social applications inside some well-known brands. For instance, General Mills' 3500-employee headquarters had a long-standing "hallway culture," that relied on informal interactions in the hallways of the corporate office for knowledge sharing. That was lost as the company expanded to a 32,000-employee global organization. To remedy that, the company implemented "Connect the General Mills Global Hallway," a Q&A initiative that allows an employee who asks a question to tab an answer as the right answer. The system will soon be updated to include "likes" and commenting.

Video game developer Electronic Arts, another enterprise Q&A practitioner, holds 2-3 day subject-matter-expert workshops, where a half-dozen or so experts give a talk each day. Each presentation is video recorded, tagged and linked to the presenter's social profile so viewers can contact the speaker directly.

"We are clearly moving into a new phase in social technologies, one in which the critical success factor will be the integration of social technologies into key organizational processes," said AIIM President, John Mancini. "The end objective should not be to simply set up social networks inside our organizations, but to actually make our organizations social. There is still a lot of work to be done to fulfill this potential, but the three use cases suggest that significant progress is happening inside business."

How is your organization using social tools? Share with us in the comments below or at And connect with us on Twitter.

Originally published on PC World |  Click here to read the original story.
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