17 Sep 2012

The Rise of Enterprise 2.0

By Sadiq Malik ( Senior Consultant MEA  Informa )
Enterprise 2.0 is a push toward integrating the social and collaborative tools of Web 2.0 into the office environment. It is also a fundamental change in how businesses operate it cuts the chains that hold back collaboration in a traditional office environment. In an Enterprise 2.0 structure, information flows laterally as well as up and down as structured order creates controlled chaos . Enterprise 2.0 has the potential to provide knowledge and content management in a surprisingly cheap and easy fashion using Web-based tools.
The Enterprise 2.0 Tools
Enterprise 2.0 tools make it easier to share and organize information. Tagging and rating provide a straightforward way to find content and make judgments about what to look at. Blogs and wikis are natural collaboration and communication platforms. Social network tools help staff find the right individual or group of people.

The Wiki
One of the most popular forms of Enterprise 2.0 is the business wiki. The wiki is a tried-and-true collaborative system that is just as good for small tasks, like keeping up with a staff directory or a dictionary of industry jargon, as it is with large tasks, like charting the development process of large products or holding online meetings.
The Blog
While wikis get a lot of press, blogs can also provide a great role in an organization. For example, a human resources blog can be used to host company memos and frequently asked questions can be quickly asked and answered in the blog comments.

Social Networking

Social networking provides a great interface for Enterprise 2.0. As the efforts to implement Enterprise 2.0 into a corporate intranet grow, traditional interfaces for operating the intranet can become unwieldy.

Enterprise 2.0 - Social Bookmarking

The process of tagging and storing documents can become an important aspect of Enterprise 2.0 as the social and collaborative efforts successfully grow the intranet into a primary resource for the company. Social bookmarking allows a person not only to store important documents and pages, but to do so using a very flexible organizational system that will quickly allow them to put a document into multiple categories if needed.

Micro-blogging

While it is easy to think of sites like Twitter as an fun way to waste a little time, they actually provide a great blueprint for greater communication and collaboration. Micro-blogging can be used to let teammates know what you are working on and to quickly communicate and organize a group.

Mashups and Applications

Office 2.0 applications can also provide a pivotal role in Enterprise 2.0. Online word processors allow for easy collaboration on documents, and online presentations can allow for quick access from anywhere in the world without the hassle of installed software and up-to-date data files.
Implementing Enterprise 2.0 
There is no such thing as an one-step-Enterprise-2.0-approach. Even with a cultural change objective and initiative upfront – the critical masses for the adoption have to be build up and carefully evolved to leverage the benefits of the network afterwards. Starting small gives you a chance to see how people react to the tools, how to manage the process and develop a social system for engaging in this “ social inline fun “ fashion Ideally after completion of your internal "Beta" project when employees are comfortable making entries, responding to one another, leaving comments and organizing the content, one can think about how to expand the effort to include other Enterprise 2.0 tools, such as ratings and bookmarks.
The Role of Telcos
Current Telco mainstream offerings to the Enterprise market are based around capacity and hosted services, sometimes complemented by IT outsourcing projects. The challenge for the carriers (and particularly the mobile operators) up to now has been how to offer services that can deepen the relationship with the Enterprise through increasing the scope of their service offering.
Telco 2.0 and Web 2.0 components creates more value to the Enterprise . For example Telco resources can be embedded with the Enterprise applications to identify the real time location and distribution of a service engineer’s customers (using Google Maps and Location feeds) to view the geography of the area covered.
The potential for improved customer retention is one of the main benefits. Increased revenues by offering higher value services by demonstrating to Enterprise customers that combining real time network knowledge and communications with Enterprise application logic can reduce costs, improve effectiveness and efficiency and increase sales.

Enterprise ICT Africa

Enterprise ICT Africa is  co-located with Africa’s largest and most well respected communications conference and exhibition, AfricaCom. Attendees to Enterprise ICT Africa will benefit from valuable, relevant learning amongst a select group of 200 ICT decision-makers, alongside networking with the 7,000+ AfricaCom telcos and 250+ technology exhibitors. For value, no other Enterprise ICT event in Africa compares.
Attendance is free to African enterprise CIOs and operator companies and early booking discounts apply to all others. Your ticket also includes access to the AfricaCom conference morning keynote sessions and 250+ stand exhibition.