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The social enterprise? “Inevitable,” says Forrester

The social enterprise? “Inevitable,” says Forrester

Analyst highlights how more organisations are adopting elements popularised by social networks to improve productivity

An enterprise that is social is not only on the horizon but also a prerogative, according to Forrester CIO group principal analyst and VP, John Brand.

Brand made the observation during Salesforce.com’s Cloudforce Social Enterprise Tour in Sydney, going so far as to characterise the social enterprise as not a case of if but when.

“It’s not about social media such as Facebook and Twitter,” he said.

“It’s about using components of these services and embedding these social computing concepts into the way work is done.”

With Forrester finding that IT-enabled collaboration is being increasingly viewed as critical to businesses’ success, Brand in turn states that social is beginning to reflect people's relationship with technology.

He also sees social now maturing beyond collaboration.

“Collaboration tends to be typically internally focused, integration driven, connects people, and relatively static,” he said,

"Social, on the other hand, is inextricably externally aware, ecosystem driven, connects communities, and is highly dynamic.”

Brand also spoke about how social perception in Asia-Pacific is changing, leading to social gaining enterprise credibility.

“Social technologies are important part of helping our business to operate more dynamically,” he said.

When it came to identifying how social is evolving the enterprise, collaboration and knowledge management were identified as important points for organisations.

“There are many different paths to the social enterprise,” Brand said, “but getting there is inevitable.”

He did admit that the development of the social enterprise in still in “the infant stages,” but added that some implementation are “maturing much faster than others.”

Some of the key observations by Forrester in the social enterprise included that evolution cycles are rapid, having choice is both a blessing and a curse, and sourcing social capabilities in not always a procurement decision.

“Implementing social without planning for change is an oxymoron,” Brand said.


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