Small Business IT Turning to Social for Renovation over Innovation

Brad Shimmin
Brad Shimmin

Summary Bullets:
• Like their big business brethren, small businesses are flocking to enterprise social networking solutions as a means of cutting travel costs and improving productivity.
• As our research has revealed, when the rubber hits the road, however, IT buyers prioritize the improvement of existing collaboration tools such as e-mail over pie-in-the-sky ideals such as business transformation.
As an industry analyst, I find it very tempting to look for that next big thing, the innovation just over the horizon, which promises to sweep away our obviously outmoded notions of what it means to build a productive, innovative business. We analysts are not mistaken in looking to the future and imagining “what if.” But as our recent survey of 600 SMB IT buyers has revealed, the future can actually improve the past. What if ideas like social analytics, event streams and rich profiles had been around when e-mail first found its footing in the mid-1980s? What if early messaging products like cc:Mail had the ability to recommend people and documents contextually, based upon the message being viewed?
Continue reading “Small Business IT Turning to Social for Renovation over Innovation”

Enterprise Social Networking No Pie in the Sky Venture for IT Pros

Brad Shimmin
Brad Shimmin

Summary Bullets:

  • Current go-to-market practices within the collaboration platform marketplace call for a highly transformational experience, where the wisdom of crowds can make an organization smarter through lofty ideals such as ideation and expertise location.
  • IT professionals responsible for the purchase of such solutions hope instead for an improvement of existing collaboration tools, most notably e-mail.

In preparing some presentation materials for an upcoming webinar (later this month) on enterprise social networking, I was struck by a singular, unexpected trend – something called pragmatism.  As an industry analyst, I am used to hearing grand visions, the biggest of which is business transformation.  This is the idea that software can literally change the way a company does business, enabling it to reach into new market opportunities or to simply bring business practices back into alignment with its stated business objectives. Continue reading “Enterprise Social Networking No Pie in the Sky Venture for IT Pros”