Monday, March 23, 2009

Enterprise_2.0_install.exe ?

While reading through Dion Hinchcliffes article “Sharepoint and Enterprise 2.0: The good, the bad, and the ugly”, I keep mapping his experience to what I am currently going through.

We are currently trying to establish a collaboration environment in our PreSales organization in EMEA and was checking out Sharepoint last week. First bumper: it requires a Microsoft Internet Explorer! What do my colleagues with their MacBooks do now? After this rather disappointing experience I found the integration into Outlook, Word, Excel and PowerPoint pretty convenient. But again, what if your focus is not the Microsoft Office suite (looking again at all the MacOS users…) or you need to share office documents across the Microsoft boundary to OpenOffice?

I actually think that we will use Sharepoint only for collaborating on Office documents in bigger projects and only as long as there is no alternative that is more flexible. My Company is currently upgrading Jive ClearSpace (now SBS?) to the latest version and we will probably use this platform as a main target for collaboration and knowledge sharing. But still this will be just a tool that only helps us doing our work better – nothing less but also nothing more.

image This example shows very well that there is nothing than Enterprise 2.0 out of the box. It can only be a part of a larger CRM 2.0 strategy and has to be extended outside the corporate firewall to be effective – or would you be happy to enter your personal data again for the internal social network after having this information available on LinkedIn and XING already?? What if your customers have answers to problems and are willing to share this knowledge?

The secret is not copying the successful Web 2.0 platforms inside the company, but making use of the reference application secure enough to utilize the original instead of (a) copy… At least our new Progress Communities (going live end of the week) will share internal AND external data on the same platform. This means customers can actively take part and influence products and their development. Authentication will separate employees and customers if needed (and only if needed!). Now I would like to see my favorite social networks being integrated into Jive (and then twitter, then IM, etc…).

Welcome to the new world!

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