How are organisations adopting the concept of Social Business?

26 Oct

Organisations acknowledge that employees need to be nimble and capable to work beyond their job descriptions in order to be part of Social Business. Within a Social Business there are tools and cultural incentives available which allow workers to obtain more access to the right people and information. Social Businesses decrease the technical obstacles and cultural boundaries for individuals to link with other individuals and information, (IBM.com:2011).

The video “Social Business-Driving Adoption,” is interesting as leading UK bloggers and IBM Business leaders and Business Partners unite to discuss the advantages of social networks and strategies to drive employee adoption.( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7ANa-BS1gwo) Within this video, they argue that individuals were traditionally unsure of whether or not to adopt Social Business tools due to trust.  Individuals usually consider what is in it for them and question: does it add value to my job? Does it help me individually? If they do not gain something from it, they will not engage in the process.

According to a recent study carried out, it found that employees were not participating. The research was titled Current State of Social Engagement Inside the Large Enterprise and was carried out by the Dachis Group. A short ten question survey was sent to a group of approximately 300 business employees from significant global companies engaged in Social Business. Within the survey, when asked to measure the complete engagement of employees within the company, more than half of them answered that 10-20% of employees were involved. This result is extremely low. The survey also questioned employees to classify which features of their social platform were most popular. “Groups” and “forums/discussions” were ranked the highest. These are considered old fashioned kinds of teamwork compared to more modern types such as activity feeds, wikis, micro blogs, and blogs. Many employees may not view Social Business as important enough to shift behaviour. Employees may not be aware of the capability of their social platform and may not be educated or trained properly, (Berkman, R.:2012).

 

Within the article “Social Business: What Are Companies Really Doing?/Key Findings,” David Kiron et al. believe that Social Business matters today and even more tomorrow.  Based on their survey they conducted, they found that Social Business is successful in two industry sectors which are a) IT and Technology, b) Entertainment, Media and Publishing. It was discovered that within the technology industries, 65.9% of managers believe that social software is more important within companies today. Within the Media industries, 74.9% of managers believe that software is important or somewhat important within companies today. This survey also found that most employees believe that successful Social Business activities require great leadership skills, (Kiron, D. Et al.:2012).

I believe that some employees are seeing more value from using Social Business tools whereas others believe that if they do not gain something from it, they will not become involved within the process. What do others think? How are organisations adopting to the concept of Social Business? How do you see it evolving short term in the next 3-5years?

 

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4 Responses to “How are organisations adopting the concept of Social Business?”

  1. billynomates2012 October 27, 2012 at 12:33 pm #

    I found your post very interesting. The key to implementing social business is to get everyone including employees to get involved in the concept of social business. How do organisations intend on involving employees? What are organisations doing at present to get everyone on board with social business?

    • blackbird333 October 27, 2012 at 1:58 pm #

      Good question. It is very important for the employees to become involved with Social Business. Therefore, I believe that their employees need to be properly educated on the process. They need to be aware that it creates value for the business as a whole. I read an interesting article by Kiron,D. Et al which was titled “Social Business: What Are Companies Really Doing?|Connecting Leadership and Culture.” What they believe that companies should do to encourage employee engagement is to be a more open business. A leader must be open to new ideas and encourage employees to communicate more and to share information they find. Team-building exercises, attitude surveys and company events encourage a greater relationship amongst employees. A professor, Marshall Van Alstyne, believes that an effective method that is used in order to encourage a cultural movement toward Social Business is to ensure that employees have incentives to share instead of hoarding their information. Change is a long term process. It will take some employees a longer amount of time than others to become engaged. Overall companies encourage openness and trust in order to encourage employees to become involved with the Social Business process.

  2. eddyjquinn October 29, 2012 at 4:42 pm #

    Good blog, very comprehensive and the use of real statistics were quite informative. However, I would just like to expand on some points disagreeing with some of content in your blog.
    Blackbird333 and billynomates2012, having highlighted the low employee interaction rates with social business within firms, with levels ranging for 10-20% interaction, one could argue that perhaps not all employee need in be so heavily interacted with social business.
    If fundamental issues such as generating value or making their own job easier, the ideology and resistance to change mindset and culture is very hard to change depending on the particular firm. I feel that there is no one size fits all solution to promote greater employee interaction with new social business techniques, but this may not be a bad thing, for example if the 10-20% were educated and trained to be “experts in their area of social business” for the firm, perhaps the this may be more productive in the long run. What do ye think?

    • blackbird333 November 3, 2012 at 1:32 pm #

      Good question eddyjquinn. You make some good points. However, I do believe that if a business wants to move forward, it should make sure that all employees are involved in the process of change towards a Social Business. I understand the point that you are making about focusing on the 10-20% of employees, but I feel that this would not work with such a low percentage of employees being involved. There is a great commercial advantage with becoming involved in Social Business. Therefore I believe that all employees should become involved even though it will take a while for this to happen.

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