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Web 2.0
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What is the Key to Getting Productivity Results from Web 2.0 Technologies?

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What is the key to getting productivity results from Web 2.0 technologies?

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  • I have been speaking with Michael Krigsman of Asurent on this topic and he has partnered with Dion Hinchcliffe to develop an intriguing methodology for understanding Enterprise adoption patterns of both Web 2.0 and Enterprise 2.0 technologies.

    Since these technologies are interaction centric, the essential measurement is end-user adoption. Of course establishing appropriate measurements and aligning individual adoption behavior with organizational goals will be key to link this to "productivity".

  • It's a good yet complex question that requires a detailed answer. That's because Web 2.0 is a term that represents a big umbrella about what's new and effective on the Internet (and consequently your intranet as well.) It can mean everything from rich user experiences and user generated content to open APIs and social media. And each one of these can actively drive productivity in an organization, if used appropriately:

    RIA (Ajax/Flash/Silverlight, etc) - Faster, more rapid UX interaction with Web applications, making them look and feel like native applications. Workers can use Web apps more quickly to enter and retrieve data without page reloads. While less strategic and more tactical than other aspects of Web 2.0, this is still the most accessible in the near-term for most businesses.

    User Generated Content (UGC) - This harnesses a potent Web 2.0 concept that traditionally businesses are just now learning about, peer production. Instead of having to do the all the work internally, you can farm it out over the network. This can potentially lead to considerable operational efficiencies and richer business outcomes.

    I recently explored a version of UGC called outsourcing here on ebizQ:

    http://www.ebizq.net/blogs/enterprise/2009/09/crowdsourcing_5_reasons_its_no.php

    Open APIs - This is where high value business data is strategically opened up and shared with partners and customers over the network using Web services, a form of public SOA. Open APIs can lead to greater efficiencies in scaling partnerships as well as direct improvements to the reuse and monetization of existing data. This is not a minor aspect of Web 2.0 and for those that aggressively pursue it in the online space, it can soon become their dominant business channel (both Twitter and Amazon get most of their usage through their APIs and not their traditional online user experiences.)

    Social Media - This is using blogs, wikis, and social networks to build communities and improve collaboration within and between companies and their trading partners and customers. Also known as Enterprise 2.0 when it's applied to businesses, there's evidence currently building that real productivity gains can be achieved when data is less submerged and workers can more easily find each other and work together.

    All of these major Web 2.0 approaches -- and there are others I've not included here -- currently have good evidence that they boost productivity for the organizations that adopt them. However, except for RIAs, all of these require culture changes in the organization as much as technology changes to be effective. So your mileage will vary considerably if you can't align the tech adoption with cultural change management.

    Best,

    Dion Hinchcliffe
    http://www.ebizq.net/blogs/enterprise

  • Web 2.0 is about leveraging information sharing through user friendly technology.
    What does it mean in the enterprise context? Offer a place where people can easily share and find relevant information about specific topics.
    Benefits:
    * Provide people with a clear knowledge of the situation and with differents point of view so they can make good decisions
    * Help teams to always be state of-the-art in their business.

    The ROI is fairly obvious: What is the cost of a wrong decision ? What is the cost of having no decision ? How many dollars are you spending on training ?

    Those are the clear benefits of entreprise 2.0

  • If I may humbly suggest, it's not the technology, it's the culture your enterprise fosters that will guarantee the highest ROI.

    Technology is ever changing. Too many companies get caught up in the mentality that platform superiority guarantees success - without considering the whole target of the exercise: Employees and customers don't give a toss about the technology, they just want pleasant, successful engagements.

    We recently published a white paper on this very subject at speakTECH Labs, titled TOO DAMN FAST - How to Match the Blistering Evolution of Social Media with Effective Internal & External Social Technology Strategies.

    You can download it here.

  • The key is getting the right information in a usable format to the right people at the right time; context. Do that and you will positively affect organizational productivity and decision making.

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