The Social Business Roadmap: Background

By Jesse Wilkins posted 04-03-2011 13:10


In my last post I introduced the AIIM Social Business Roadmap. This will be the first in a series of posts that explores the roadmap in more detail. For this post I'd like to focus on some background - why and how we developed the roadmap. 

We developed the roadmap because we believe that many organizations are starting to move from dabbling with social technologies in a very ad hoc fashion to more thoughtful and strategic approaches to them. At the same time, however, social technologies are a bit different from many other types of software implementations. Their low cost and many "freemium"-type models makes them easy to experiment with from a financial perspective. Many of them are hosted or commercial services, so there is minimal impact on the IT staff and implementation is often a matter of minutes rather than months. And end users are familiar with their general capabilities in a way that is not always true when it comes to enterprise applications. This was discussed to some extent in the Geoffrey Moore white paper, "Systems of Engagement and the Future of Enterprise IT". 

At the same time, we found that many of the resources on the web focused fairly narrowly on social media marketing. There are very few quality resources available that address internal use cases or even external ones apart from marketing, sales, and customer service. Yet we believe that internal use cases will provide significant value to organizations and may represent a more transformative opportunity for organizations over time. 

It was therefore clear to us that there was some value in putting together a more formalized and strategic approach that addressed those issues. We wanted to make sure that the roadmap met our overarching goal, to provide an approach for implementing social technologies quickly, responsibly, and in a way that supported the business purpose of the organization. And we wanted the roadmap to reflect the way that social technologies are actually used today, while identifying and espousing some defensible practices as to how it should be done (that "responsibly" part again). 

We started by reviewing a number of the case studies available that describe successful social business implementations. We compared those to our experiences, both within AIIM and from previous projects we'd worked on. And we reviewed a number of the existing social business-related roadmaps that others have developed

Once we developed the draft roadmap, we released it to our AIIM Expert Bloggers and a few other interested folks to get their take on it. We then incorporated their feedback to produce the 1.0 version which was released on March 18. We've also started to put its contents out on an AIIM wiki. We hope that the broader community will contribute to the wiki in order to flesh out use cases and case studies. 

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