Authors: Jim Lundy Date: December 28, 2012
Topics: Workplace Research Note Number: 2012-50
Issues: What are the technologies and architectures that enterprises should leverage in the workplace?
Summary: The infusion of social capabilities into almost every category of enterprise software shows no sign of slowing down. Social intranets, app stores and idea pipelines all make up the key predictions for making a business social.
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Current approaches to collaborating and managing information are built on an aging, relatively inflexible foundation of email and content management. Social computing tools have penetrated the enterprise in isolated pockets on a large scale, very often through isolated projects and business-unit decisions. The products leading this user-dominated beachhead of functionality are seeking to expand to enterprise-level capability, become platforms for a new social-centric foundation, and engage IT organizations to make these an enterprise reality.
The perception remains that enterprises lag the consumer use of social computing, particularly in the view of IT organizations. We believe that reality presents a different view, and that even today most enterprises are leveraging social computing capabilities.
- By year-end 2014, social intranets based on an enterprise social networking platform will replace intranets in 60% of enterprises.
- By year-end 2014, social analytics will be a critical selection criterion for enterprise social networking platforms.
- By year-end 2013, leading enterprise software platforms, including social software and content management platforms, will connect third-party apps to their ecosystem via an app store and activity feed.
- By year-end 2013, enterprises will shift their focus away from legacy tools to focus on socially enabled HCM suites that enable higher performance from people.
- By year-end 2014, social recognition, which leverages both gamification and formal recognition, will be an accepted way to engage employees and customers.
- By year-end 2013, the race to construct a full marketing suite stack will drive consolidation of the marketing automation and social marketing segments.
- By year-end 2016, enterprises will use innovation pipelines as a standard business dashboard.
The shift to a more real-time socially infused enterprise is here. There are significant benefits to changing the way people work. These approaches are still being understood, but by allowing people to engage each other faster, better collaboration can lead to faster problem solving.
The Social Enterprise – The End of the Intranet
Prediction: By year-end 2014, social intranets based on an enterprise social networking platform will replace intranets in 60% of enterprises.
The social enterprise will be characterized by a shift to a real-time collaborative environment, also known as the Enterprise Social Network (ESN). The static intranet will shift toward a real-time people-infused ESN. Users will be able to update their ESN pages faster than they could get the intranet updated. Information will flow faster, partly due to engaged community managers and users.
Enterprises face an overarching priority to become increasingly nimble and to innovate faster and more effectively. The best way to respond to this demand is to better leverage enterprise knowledge and knowledge workers.
Business units will accelerate their drive to glean value from these approaches, and to expand initial pilots and small-scale deployments. IT organizations often remain handicapped by limited resources, restricted budgets, and lagging skills to tackle the social computing wave.
Prediction: By year-end 2014, social analytics will be a critical selection criterion for enterprise social networking platforms.
Business managers and users will gain additional insights on people through the use and understanding of social analytics. Social and content analytics in the context of how people work will shed new light on how work gets done and how innovation occurs. Business managers will use this information to accelerate performance and productivity.
As ESNs grow, the ability to know “what’s going on?” becomes more important and strategic. Putting aside privacy issues, being able to understand who is engaging with others and helping out more will allow managers to identify potential high-value candidates sooner rather than later. Dashboards that cover engagement, onboarding, expertise and many more indicators about people, will help managers and individuals engage more. At the same time, identifying the most important content, by combining the traditional “single source of truth” with the most popular, highest rated-content, will be important to users and to the organization.
Enterprise App Stores
Prediction: By year-end 2013, leading enterprise software platforms, including social software and content management platforms, will connect third-party apps to their ecosystem via an app store and activity feed.
Third-party apps that plug into ESNs will increase worker productivity. No one company will be able to deliver all the capabilities that enterprises need. The mobile model of building apps will also shift to enterprise software.
Social app stores are already becoming a new way to enhance functionality. Cisco, Force.com, Google, IBM, Jive Software and Microsoft all have app stores (also called exchanges) at various stages of maturity.
Prediction: By year-end 2013, enterprises will shift their focus away from legacy tools to focus on socially enabled HCM suites that enable higher performance from people.
Human capital management (HCM) is all about attracting and managing people. Due to the sheer work involved in hiring, paying, promoting and firing associates, HCM has been viewed as more of a record-based organization than a critical one. Social HCM can help to change that. The unique parts of social HCM – social recruiting, social onboarding, social learning and expertise location – will help fuel a move toward socially enabled HCM suites. As enterprises realize that engaging people is critical to recruiting and retaining high-performing employees, Social HCM will become a new battle cry and evaluation criterion.
Prediction: By year-end 2014, social recognition, which leverages both gamification and formal recognition, will be an accepted way to engage employees and customers.
Today, many corporate recognition programs are not integrated into the everyday lives of employees. Badging, a component of gamification, has been popular, but it is really only a small element of an overall recognition program. Social recognition will be a big part of an overall social HCM approach.
One problem has been that recognition programs are isolated. They might be well executed, but in many cases, only the highlights or headline get onto a company portal or intranet. By its nature, social recognition, which notifies the community when a manager or peer recognizes an associate, makes everyone aware of the recognition. Moreover, open-ended feedback and follow-up, available to and from everyone in the community, can extend and amplify the recognition, increasing its motivational value.
Prediction: By year-end 2013, the race to construct a full marketing suite stack will drive consolidation of the marketing automation and social marketing segments.
The race to build the marketing suite is here. Social marketing is part of a marketing suite, but the need to generate leads for the business and market the brand goes far beyond just social or user experience.
Multiple tools are being blended together to create what is being called the “next-generation customer experience,” which Aragon calls a marketing suite. Social media monitoring was hot first, followed quickly by social marketing (running campaigns on social networks like Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn). The popularity of social marketing was demonstrated in 2012 by the sales of BuddyMedia to Salesforce and Wildfire to Google.
Social marketing and marketing automation will see the most consolidation. Large vendors like Adobe, IBM, Google, Microsoft, Salesforce and SAP will give a lot of attention to both categories. To evaluate the integration of marketing automation into a marketing suite, buyers should look for a more streamlined and integrated workflow. That is why we expect a fast and furious bidding war for Marketo.
Of course, marketing automation is not the only component that will define the best marketing suite. Other tools include social media management, social marketing, email marketing, customer community tools and social platforms. It is open season on all of them. The race is on to buy up all the components of the new marketing suite.
Prediction: By year-end 2016, enterprises will use innovation pipelines as a standard business dashboard.
Continuous innovation is the lifeblood of nearly every commercial enterprise. Driving innovation is one of the single biggest hurdles every CEO faces. While the interest in using crowdsourcing to generate ideas isn’t new, it is now shifting from an art to more of a science.
With the advent of more advanced Idea engines, enterprises will start using these tools to build a measurable and actionable innovation pipeline. This raises the prospect of making Innovation a strategic practice, just as in the early days of sales automation, enterprises got a clearer view of pending revenue streams by focusing on the phases of a sales cycle.
It isn’t just about creating and measuring ideas, it is also about applying predictive analytics to measure their expected success. When innovation is a measurable competency, enterprises can more accurately predict the status and health of their innovation pipeline. Enterprises now realize that a healthy innovation pipeline has a direct impact on future revenue growth.
Just has been done in sales, soon research, engineering and product management groups can be measured by forward-looking idea pipelines.
- Start building communities now to drive viral adoption.
- Enterprises should re-evaluate their legacy approach to recruiting and engaging their associates.
- Shift away from legacy HCM tools to ones that socially enabled ones that enable people engagement.
- Evaluate social software providers on their ability to surface people and content analytics. Look for graphical, dashboard interfaces rather than static reports.
- Set a multi-year goal to convert a specific set of ideas into revenue-producing products.
Reaping significant rewards from social computing will come from a broad enterprise deployment that fundamentally transforms an email-centric communication flow into a social network that leverages community and activity streams. Business units will accelerate their drive to glean value from these approaches, and look to socially infuse areas of the business such as Human Resources and People Management, Engineering and Marketing with more ways to engage people internally and externally. IT organizations will need to overcome perceived handicaps of limited resources, restricted budgets, and lagging skills to tackle the social computing wave.
Copyright © 2012 Aragon Research Inc. and or its affiliates. All rights reserved.