Andy McAfee hosts this discussion with Paul Greenberg (The 56 Group), Marcia Conner (Altimeter) and Ted Schadler (Forrester).
[These are my notes from the Enterprise 2.0 Conference 2011 in Boston. Since I’m publishing them as soon as possible after the end of a session, they may contain the occasional typographical or grammatical error. Please excuse those. To the extent I’ve made any editorial comments, I’ve shown those in brackets.]
- What’s New?. The term “social” is going away. Collaboration is fading as a buzz phrase too. Meanwhile, senior HR leaders in large corporations are thinking about using social software to get things done in their organizations. So, HR is about to become a big focus for social software. Some of this is because there has been a gap in companies in terms of who or what improves productivity. This allows HR to help free the potential of 90% of their employees rather than devoting all their time on the 10% of employees who present compliance or risk challenges. Another important innovation is that companies are deploying command centers that track customer feedback. Radian6 is one of the companies that makes is possible.
- When will things actually change? Within three years Marcia Conner believes that most employees will be taking action for themselves to obtain the social software they need to get their work done. This should force organizations to start deploying these tools on an enterprise wide basis. Ted Schadler says that 50% of employees now say that their technology at home is better than what they have at work. Two-thirds of Gen Y employees say their personal technology is better. Similarly, 35% of employees say they purchase their own work devices. Employees are moving ahead of their employers when it comes to technology. Meanwhile, as long as senior management remains entrenched and unaware of these shifts, the organizations will not formally change. Paul Greenberg says, however, that the communications revolution is leading some companies to allow some experiments under the radar. The manager may not completely understand social software, but they are willing to let their people try.