Organizing Enterprise 2.0

By Hanns Kohler-Kruner posted 07-22-2010 11:41


With john writing that we no longer need to worry about an ROI on Enterprise 2.0 because it has reached the ubiquity of Email or telephone, it is maybe time to spend some thoughts about the market itself. We talk about the people, change management and culture change, but somewhere at the end of that we will need some tools to provide the technology that makes all of these plans run… to provide the dial tone like John put it.

I know Atle tried to get a discussion started on the Discussion forum about the different kinds of technologies and software and how to structure them and rather than answer there, I would like to give it a go here and hope to get some feedback from you all.

The definition from Andrew McAfee from 2006 has been reworked many times and has been discussed in various blogs ovr and over again. AIIMs defininition as put together by industry experts for the AIIM Enterprise 2.0 certificate program says it is : "a system of web-based technologies that provide rapid and agile collaboration, information sharing, emergence and integration capabilities in the extended enterprise."

Both Professor McAfee and Dion Hinchcliffe have given us models to test software against an Enterprise 2.0 functionality framework. McAfee has given us SLATES and Hinchcliffe FLATNESSES back in 2006 and 2007 respectively.

But what neither of these models do effectively is allow us to group software or tools as to their purposes inside an organization. For example collaboration as a purpose - document management software provides collaboration! No one however would put straightforward document management with check-in/check-out and versioning into Enterprise 2.0 technologies. The same functionality of working together on a document can be had in a wiki, for example or Google Wave for that matter, or a myriad of the other tools that can be found in our Buyers Guide here in this community.

It will be impossible to put the tools in a 2 dimensional space, but there are several axis I would like to suggest and I am looking for your input in this as well.

Here are a mix of business purposes for the software:

  • Email Replacement/Reduction
  • Portal Replacement
  • (redcuce) Collaboration Complexity
  • Intermediation
  • Externalization
  • Innovation Management
  • Leveraging IP
  • Serendipity
  • Customer Support
  • SME Establishment
  • Community  Building
  • Prediction Markets
  • Sentiment Analysis
  • Supporting Legacy Systems
  • Streamlining Integration

Each tool has strength and weaknesses in these areas. Throw in SLATES as a model to map functionality and I think we might have a basis for getting some kind of order into a rapidly changing marketspace. Because sometimes I agree with John, Enterprise 2.0 seems to have crossed the Chasm for some organizations, but I would rather we didn’t have to go through the long cycle of market development until Email and Telephone come to us at the price and with the value they come to us now (i.e. does anyone remember the price of a long distance call say 20-30 years ago?)

So, what other categories are missing, what other models are you aware of when it comes to mapping the software and its functionalities against the business purpose?

I look forwards to your input. You can also reach me via @hannskk on Twitter.