reflections of enterprise2.0

Over the last ten weeks I’ve been researching enterprise 2.0 topics and positing my thoughts and opinions and my thoughts on this topic have been positive.  I’ve used the knowledge gained from this in current employment and E2.0 has been the topic of several discussions and debates at various social events. This just goes to show that E2.0 is becoming a very big topic not only for businesses in IT but with their employees and the general public.  I’ve read various class mates blogs which has helped further my own knowledge and has helped with my own understandings on the topic.  The one topic that stands out that most people are concerned about with using these technologies is this question:

 

How will companies use the public/private information I post/write/vote/comment/tweet?

 

What are you thoughts and opinions on this question? Please post your comments below.

adoption issues with social networks

This post is linked with my previous post how companies use social networking where are discussed what social networks were and how they should be adopted by enterprises.

The corporate community seems to allow the risks and negatives to sway their opinions about social networking platforms and the following adoption issues seem to be the major cause.  The need for polices and guidelines that need to be developed in order for employee to prefer to keep their network social rather than mix it with work.  Corporate sensitive information that may become visible if an external network is being used for work purposes.  These statements mentioned constantly generate and push companies to avoid the adopting social networking technologies when education and training can be given to allow ca be given on what are appropriate ways to use external social networks in a work context.

It is important as E2 implementers to mitigate these adoption issue the technology adoption lifecycle is clearly relevant with trying to implement social network within an organisation. 

The technology adoption lifecycle is a sociological model developed by Joe M. Bohlen, George M. Beal and Everett M. Rogers at Iowa State University

The technology adoption lifecycle model outlines the adoption/acceptance of a new product/innovation according a set demographic and psychological characteristics of the defined adopter groups and is illustrated as a typical normal distribution

In the following figure we can see there is a range of adopters within the range from earliest to latest; innovators, early adopters, early majority, late majority and laggards.

DiffusionOfInnovation[1]

The report summarised the categories as:

  • innovators – had larger farms, were more educated, more prosperous and more risk-oriented
  • early adopters – younger, more educated, tended to be community leaders
  • early majority – more conservative but open to new ideas, active in community and influence to neighbours
  • late majority – older, less educated, fairly conservative and less socially active
  • laggards – very conservative, had small farms and capital, oldest and least educated (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Technology_adoption_lifecycle)

Principles of User Adoption

  1. making work easy
  2. create reasons for people to use the technology
  3. encouraging person self expression user will want to use social
  4. selecting your early adopters to spread the work and successes

I strongly believe that executives need take a key role in pushing these technologies within an organisation by being the 2.5% innovators and informing the business how these technologies can greatly improve existing processes.  In my current employment I find that there is strong culture with using email for key processes such as service alerting, document reviewing and topic discussions which cause miscommunication and delayed responses. Another point that should be mentioned is that it is important to choose your early adopters, these people can greatly affect the long term out comes and future adopters, people that fit within the above demographic will surely help push and motivate others in effectively using social networking platforms within an enterprise environment.

how companies use social networking

With a prominent part of the internet community focused on social networks, like Facebook and Twitter, it is not surprising that major brands such as Coca Cola,  Telstra and Microsoft are all using these social structures to appeal to a wider audience.  

A social network is a social structure made up of individuals (or organizations) called "nodes" which are tied (connected) by one or more specific types

By looking at the definition above, companies can build relationships with their customers, connect with clients/ suppliers/partners and build a sense of trust and emersion.  Although these benefits are promising there are many issues that companies face when adopting Social Networks; employees may like to keep their network purely social, sensitive information may become visible to external viewers, setting guidelines and training employees on how to use these technologies appropriately.

There have been attempts to make this transition easier and adoption is definitely a case by case basis, and solutions have been made to suit.  Products such as LinkedIn allow people to have the clear separation of work and social topics but personally I believe one of the clear uses of Social Networks is to recruit your prosumers to spread the word of your companies services and products.  Facebook provides companies with the ability to create fan pages in minutes. The following are two examples of how companies have used Facebook in this way, these two companies have accomplished these very ideas.Like Red Bull on Facebook!

Red Bull is unique with it’s facebook fan page by integrating sponsored athletes, like Australian Robbie Maddison, to go against the normal integration of the official company twitter feed.   They also provide access to WebTV, entertaining their fans while promoting their product with it’s classic extreme image.

Lean back and be entertained with the best content the world of Red Bull has to offer, from action sports and motor sports to music and lifestyle, exclusively packed in one global 24/7 free web TV stream, any time any place.

After liking the Red bull fan page and trolling through what they have to offer, I found myself showing work colleges and friends how interactive and interesting the site was after about 30mins. 

I’ve always been against these kinds of marketing strategies taken by companies, but seeing how Red Bull has made this experience enjoyable I have started to change this view point.

 

Starbucks

Like Redbull, Starbucks has tried to use facebook in a different approach which has lead it to a facebook quiz application to promote its ice cream products which encourages you to share it with your friends.

The following video demonstrates how Starbucks used facebook to interact with it’s customer base,,not only to promote it’s product but to listen to what they wanted.

http://player.vimeo.com/video/9626593?title=0&byline=0&portrait=0&color=B4CC27

 

Both these two companies make the effort into Facebook  fan pages and it pays off, because that allow the fans to interact by providing videos, photos, special offers without locking them out.

wikis in business

A wiki is a website that anyone can edit, below is Wikipedia’s definition;

A wiki ( /ˈwɪki/ WIK-ee) is a website that allows the easy creation and editing of any number of interlinked web pages via a web browser using a simplified markup language or a WYSIWYG text editor. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wiki)

By having an open table style platform one may believe that it would just become a giant mess, but due to the high convergence of a wide and diverse community there is a need to collaborate with positive and correct information.

Wikis are a great tool they are not suitable for structured workflows such as, creating new user accounts within an organisation, as there a key pre-defined sequence and authorization.  Some areas where wikis are suitable in an enterprise environment are tech support divisions; administrators could create documentation that can be updated and modified to suit the continuously changing technologies, or with project management; where project information can be found in a centralised area and not lost in email, scraps of paper and white boards.

There are many issues that enterprise 2.0 implementers face:

  • Reluctance to contribute
  • Reluctance to edit
  • Familiarity with tool
  • Use wikis when relevant
  • Establish appropriate process
  • (INB346 Lecture 8 Dr Jason Watson)

BRIDGE and Wikispaces Private Label

BRIDGE, an intercultural project between Australia and Indonesia, uses Wikispaces Private Label to bridge cultural divides and foster communication among educators in the two countries.

There was a need for school-to-school interaction and BRIDGE needed something that was easy to use and had little training. They created private wikis for each school partnership to share work, information and videos, share resources with their partner schools and the theming system also allowed them to customize their site and create a professional identity.

    Benefits and pitfalls of business and corporate blogging

    External Blogging

    There are two main benefits to external blogs; marketing and customer/community engagement to promote your product but it is important to learn how to use this technology wisely or it could have major pitfalls.  Here are some examples of companies using blogging technologies:

    St Ali www.stali.com.au

    This is a small coffee shop in Melbourne that has embraced micro blogging technologies to enhance it’s relationship with customers.  Spending a few minutes searching through their twitter feed (http://twitter.com/St_ALi) it is easy to see how they are benefitting from this form of technology in marketing and customer/community engagement.

    St Ali has increased it’s customer community by offering subscribers special offers and information. This offers an alternative aspect to regular marketing strategies used by other coffee shops, such as loyalty cards, because they make the customer feel that they are involved within a companies community.  St Ali also offer substitutes to existing services, such as booking tables, to it’s followers.

    sthmelb I wonder if I can book at table @ST_ALi via twitter? Lets try: *Table for 7 at 11am today please. Under Russell. Ta.*

    Another substitute service is how they handle complaints made by their customer base.

    By allowing this type of medium St Ali have increased their customer to customer message propagation with followers/fans posting positive feedback for other potential customers to view. St Ali have managed to embrace external blogging technologies to effectively improve their marketing and customer satisfaction.

    Habitata is a retailer of household furniture in the UK which allows us to view the pitfalls of not recognising new strategies involved with marketing, using blogging.  In 2009, the company had been accused of taking advantage of twitters hash trends to promote specials and product give-aways.

    They used hashtags that had absolutely nothing to do with furniture, decorating, or shopping. Instead they used the obvious top hashtags for Thursday evening AEST such as #iPhone #mms #Apple and even Australia’s Masterchef contestant who was voted off #Poh

    Habitata went into damage control and started to delete the offending tweets and make apologies to the twitter user base, demonstrating that it can be easy to have a huge target audience take offence and voice their opinions, whether they be positive or negative, on the internet.

    Internal Blogging

    These blogs are used by companies to help internal processes and knowledge management.  There are a number of ways a company can setup an internal blog, whether it is to be used by all employees or just higher level managers, but the basic function of the blog still remains with the aim to increase employee communication and collaboration. There are many reasons to host internal blogs in an enterprise environment, some of the most common reasons are Executive communication, Project Management, competitive intelligence, expertise sharing and internal communication. There is a list of some benefits here.

    It should be noted that we often see that internal blogging occurs favourably with the low level employees, as opposed to management, as they find this type of communication to be more beneficial to their positions. The following are some examples of how enterprises have implemented blogging into their internal environments.

    Suncorp offers Financial Services, was founded in 1916 and has over 16,000 employees.  Suncorp has benefited from incorporating and integrating Yammer as part of its social media suite.  It has helped geographically separated employees and teams to integrate and has helped project collaboration as one of the leading cultures within the organisation.

    Go Big Always use an interesting approach to blogging with new employees introducing themselves over a blog rather then walking around meeting face to face.  After employing people I find that the introduction phase can seem to go on for a couple of days so if there is this kind of internal medium for employees to find out what is going on, I love this idea.  GBA also use their blogs for the following

    • meeting notes
    • competitive insights
    • status reports
    • props
    • ideas
    • project updates
    • how to
    • roll-call
    • goofing-off
      Both these examples show how beneficial internal blogging can be for employees to communicate and manage company knowledge.

    twitter can get you fired!

    On the drive home after work a couple of months ago I remember listening to triple j and they were discussing how a journalist had been sacked over a twitter she made about Bindi Irwin at the Australian Logies.  This started a long discussion with my partner about how people should take social media as a medium, Should we really take it seriously with the information it provides? It was also pointed out by my partner that what would have happened if the response was positive, would she have have gotten the sack then? Because it seems clear to us both that she only got sacked after the comments were taken negatively. Here is a link to the full article.

    The Age’s editor-in-chief, Paul Ramadge, said last night in a statement that Deveny would no longer write columns for the Melbourne broadsheet.

    “I came to the view that I didn’t think Catherine was a good fit for The Age going forward,” Mr Ramage told 774 ABC Radio Melbourne

    social media and the law

    The benefits in implementing enterprise 2.0 technologies into organisations are numerous, but one of the leading concerns is it’s goverence.  Social media law protects companies from employee involvement in social netowrking sites (sns) such as facebook and twitter, but this is a farely new law which can be critised itself.
    It is important for companies to be aware of how these sites work and how they can be legally responsoible or they face the risk of brand defimation, repuation and numerous other issues associated with sns.
    In one of my recent posts about nestle we can see how easily a companies repuation can be damaged while trying to use SNS.
    Companies need to make sure they have attempted to protect themselves from such outcomes by creating the following agreements and contracts, organisational policies, enforement andlitigation. (rostroncarlyle)
    Social media is still emerging and critisms of privacy have been doucmented well by the media.  This has lead to many companies adopting strict polices or blocking them all together.
    Companies have been facing these kinds of legal ramifications for many years without the use of social media and there have been well documented cases of these without the aid of these emerging technologies for example the David Jones sex scandle.  These have been governed by various laws, polices and training provided to protect the company and help mitigate these issues when they arise.
    Why is it then that the online social media cannot develop it’s own laws and governance to protect companies so that  a means of social media within organisationscan exist?
    newlawyer points out
    “Robert Beerworth, the managing director of web design and development company Willam, said firms need to develop a policy around social media in order to benefit from the full extent of its possibilities, as well as lessen risk.”
    Des Walsh is a social media strategist and business mentor coach and he “…emphasises that a good social media policy should reflect the circumstances, culture and goals of the organisation using it.”

    ABC and it’s social media use guidelines.

    Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) is a government founded public broadcaster founded in 1929.  It has a presence on television, radio and the internet.  I have noticed over the last 2 years that ABC has started to dive head first into social media and for once it has payed off.  Even programs like Q&A have taken full use of twitter for is questions on live TV, triple j for presenters to build reputation, radio shows to take requests and tv/radio shows to blog what is happen within their related field. In the article it outlines the guide lines set to ABC employee involved in social media.

    In an email sent to ABC staff this morning, the new Use of Social Media policy gives four standards which staff and contractors must follow when using both work and personal social media interaction:

    • Do not mix the professional and the personal in ways likely to bring the ABC into disrepute.
    • Do not undermine your effectiveness at work.
    • Do not imply ABC endorsement of your personal views.
  • Do not disclose confidential information obtained through work.
  • the role of a prosumer

    Interesting video on the role of prosumers and how that may impact the future.

    how nestle uses enterprise 2.0

    I was trying to find some examples for my case studies and I found this example of Nestle showing us how not to use social media.

    On the Nestle facebook page fans were posting comments using an altered version of their logo, Nestle response was…

    “Nestle fans, don’t use an altered version of the company’s logo as your profile pic, or your comments will be deleted.”

    This was not taken well by it’s fans, here is a link to the story.

    Nestle’s Facebook Page: How a Company Can Really Screw Up Social Media

    benefits and risks of implementing enterprise 2.0

    Benefits and risks are a common outcome with any change and implementing enterprise 2.0 into an organisation is no exception. It is important to plan and analyse the benefits and risks in order to ensure an overall positive outcome.

    There are many facts that contribute to implementing enterprise 2.0 which makes it difficult to predict how certain organisations will handle E2.0 introduction. The following are key factors that affect this introduction (more of these can be found in Chapter 4 in Implementing Enterprise 2.0 by Ross Dawson)

    • Organisation structure
    • Employee distribution
    • Age Distribution
    • Regulation

    Benefits and risks of implementing enterprise 2.0 within an organisation can be placed into the following categories;

    Benefits Risks
    Productivity and Efficiency Security
    Staff Engagement Loss of control
    Knowledge Reputation
    Reputation Reliability
    Productivity
    Resources

    Intuit software company that develops financial software for small businesses, accountants and individuals such as Quicken and TurboTax.  There was a growing problem around Intuits inovation in turning ideas into outcomes.  It was found that some of the younger employees were using other outside tools to help with collaboration such as google docs, facebook and IM.  The main goal into Intuit success in implementing E2.0 into there organisation was organisational structure and culture change. The use of user education and adoption to change the company “morale and beliefs… that … focused around “we can’t move quickly”” (Implementing Enterprise 2.0 at Intuit, Part One: Business Drivers) which lead to the development of an internal product Brainstorm that is is now sold to external companies.

    Benefits
    Productivity and Efficiency Faster innovation and product development
    • Time to market increased by 60%
    • Rate of ideation increased by 1000%
    • Participation increased by 1000%
    • developed several solutions that came as a result of internal ideas
    Increased productivity
    Improved Team Performance
    More efficient project Management
    Staff Engagement Better internal communication
    • tools make it far easier for employees to collaborate and work together whether they are in an office or not
    • remote worker it is easier to still to become a part of the company
    Greater Staff Engagement
    Enhanced collaborative behaviours
    Knowledge Enhanced search
    • Use of Yammer used for human powered search engine for employee issues.
    Reputation Increased visibility in market place
    • solving real world customer problems

    There are some potential risks that can come with the above example, these risks need to be identified and assessed.

    Risks
    Loss of control Loss of control of information flows
    • Due the collection of ideas are between employees there may be a loss of control how to take the ideas to the next level and create a product.
    • Employees might criticise each others ideas.
    Negative internal comments
    Reputation Inappropriate staff behaviour
    • As stated above criticism of employee ideas could lead to bad internal and external reputation.
    Reliability Information unreliable or incorrectly used
    • Incorrect information could be given while developing ideas and cause issues with an end product.
    Productivity Reduced staff productivity
    • Staff might spend more time using these tools for other means other then it intention of brain storming ideas
    Resources Bandwidth overused
    • As the change for other mediums of communication are adopted existing infrastructure may need to be improved.

    TELUS is a communication company in Canada. It was focused on providing effective learning to its team members to sustain and improve on its services. With a large percentage of there budget going towards education it was clear that there was a need to provide a better and cheaper solution. TELUS adopted Microsoft Sharepoint to become its focal point of internal education.

    Benefits
    Productivity and Efficiency
    • Faster to access specific skills and knowledge in a wide variety of areas
    Increased productivity
    Improved Team Performance
    Staff Engagement Better internal communication
    • Staff members can interact with each other to learn.
    • Enhanced governance on documentation allows employee to classify and share user content.
    • Better sharing of internal knowledge
    Greater Staff Engagement
    Enhanced collaborative behaviours
    More effective learning & development
    Knowledge Easier access to expertise and organisational capabilities
    • Better sharing of internal knowledge
    • Sharepoints ability to categorise knowledge
    Reputation Attractiveness as an employee
    • In encouraging employees to improve there skills and providing a service to do so will help improve employee respect
    Improved firm reputation
      Risks
      Loss of control Loss of control of information flows
      • Because employee can post there own documents related to learning it could attract criticism or loss of structure.
      Negative internal comments
      Reputation Inappropriate staff behaviour
      • Staff could use services provided in Sharepoint for inappropriate usage
      Reliability Information unreliable or incorrectly used
      • Because staff can create their own documentation it might be a challenge to make sure the information is correct to be passed on.
      Productivity Reduced staff productivity
      • Staff may spend too much time using the new service and become less focused on their job.
      Resources Bandwidth overused
      • As the change for other mediums of communication are adopted existing infrastructure may need to be improved.
      References