I just returned from the #e2conf (www.e2conf.com) event in Boston, which focused on the rapid expansion of social collaboration platforms, and was not surprised by many of the concerns among the participants about impacts to existing platforms and architectures -- and what to do with the growing fragmentation of their content. Enterprise Content Management (ECM) as a category has been so much about the organization of content across the many data silos, but ECM has become yet another data silo, as identified by AIIM CEO John Mancini in his most recent CMSWire article Digital Chatter, Information Overload, and How to Get it Under Control.
I'm always loathe to use the phrases "shifting paradigm" or "paradigm changer," but that's exactly what social collaboration is doing to the broader knowledge management space. If you look back even 18 to 24 months in the past, the focus was to classify every artifact within our enterprise platform using detailed metadata, structured taxonomies and content types, and expansive architectures and topologies that would allow us more powerful and flexible search options -- all in an effort to identify content and expertise hidden within our rapidly growing content stores. That model has been turned on its head. In our drive to get more of our content management investments, and, more importantly, to get our end users to more actively participate in the process, we turned to social collaboration.
Hopefully we can all agree that a collaboration platform without end user participation equals failure. Now I'm not suggesting that the tools and platforms available today are the panacea of collaboration -- I think its still a work in progress. My prediction is that the next wave will rest somewhere in between the structured collaboration model of SharePoint, for example, and a Yammer or Tibbr. We are changing our internal collaboration paradigm (sorry for using this word again) from a structured to an unstructured model -- but I believe that we'll ultimately need to have more of a hub-and-spoke model, with vast social collaboration hubs or networks that can plug into, or access information within numerous content spokes, each with varying regulatory, compliance, and permissions-based controls.
What we need to do now is to keep our heads, and be aware of the requirements that surround each piece of content (which might be different depending on content type, system of record, or business unit) and how they should be accessed, viewed, edited, shared, secured, retained, or removed by members of your social collaboration network. More precisely, understand what content should be accessible through your social platforms, and what content should remain within your ECM platform. Don't lock it all down, but don't allow access to everything.
Creating a content lifecycle that includes social is going to be difficult -- but it’s the linchpin to controlling content fragmentation in an increasingly unstructured collaboration world.#governance #structuredcollaboration #ElectronicRecordsManagement #ESN #ContentManagement #InformationGovernance #socialcollaboration #ECM #enterprisesocialcollaboration #Collaboration #social #SharePoint #fragmentation