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Session Two CSNF: Enterprise 2.0

This session will cover enterprise 2.0 explaining the theory and practical application in modern business. Providing employees with new age tools to communicate, share knowledge and improve busienss efficiency is vital for business to remain agile and competitive in the modern era.

Sonia Carter, Head of Online Internal Communications, AXA UK

Using Enterprise 2.0 for employee engagement and efficiency

So alot of people are interested to know about how they can implement a social media strategy for internal communications. Just when everyone thought the intranet was dead, it was a relief to listen to Sonia explain how AXA has successfully implemented OurSpace for employee communications. I was interested to listen to how they used the discussion forums. Since Sonia hasn’t released her slides yet, I’ll iterate some stuff of her slide that I managed to capture.

Discussion forums work when people have a reason to engage

  • Employees connect with other employees online, building a network/community of contacts.
  • Discussions are themed around topics including working life, customer service, IT in each business are
  • Encouraged to share best practices & success stories.
  • Guest forums – CEOs, strategic leaders host hour-long Q&As to aid change and 2-way communications.
  • Buy & Sell forums drive traffic

So, if you provide the platform that employees are comfortable with and can add value to, they will engage.

EXECUTING SOCIAL MEDIA For Internal Communications 2009: Delivering More Value In A Tough Economy

While I was trying to find some inspiration online on social media’s internal communications, I stumbled across this event happening on June the 17th that might be of interest to you.

EXECUTING SOCIAL MEDIA For Internal Communications 2009

What better timing? Though its in Chicago :-( But for those readers in the states, hey might be something you would be interested in attending. What interests me about this conference is the questions it will attempt to address. Have a look, you might find yourself asking the same questions.

  • Should your organization build an employee social network?
  • Should you encourage or discourage internal blogs?
  • What is the best use for wikis in your organization?
  • How to get senior management buy-in and legal approval
  • Measuring engagement vital signs
  • Making your intranet a collabnorative space for employees
  • Should your internal communications program include podcasts and online videos?
  • What are the security and privacy pitfalls in the internal social media journey?
  • How to make sure employees will actually use your social media deployments
  • What are must-haves in every employee social media policy?
  • How can we measure the ROI of social media, without spending a fortune

So if you’re asking these questions… this presentation slide I found on slideshare might be useful to you.

It was great to hear that the AXA OurSpace employee collaboration tool using forums and blogs was delivered in 6 weeks and was achieved through bypassing usual routes ie IT (via @awebbmaster). AXA started OurSpace with AXA’s “Interactive Customer Experience” – Social media requests – Blog, forum, network, wiki. It was also refreshing to hear that AXA built one of the internal platforms using WordPress! Hip hip hooray for open source! OurSpace is good according the #csnf attendees because….

  • AXA’s OurIdeas let’s employees post ideas for improving AXA for customers or employees, people can vote & comment for/against idea (via @simplygroup).
  • AXA Our Spaces delivered using open source technologies – WordPress and vBulletin (via @awebbmaster)
  • AXA’s OurSpace broke every brand guideline – wanted people to know it wasn’t a place for policy and tasks; it was employees forum (via @simplygroup)
  • OurSpace like an internal MyStarbucksIdea/Dell IdeaStorm. Looks good! Org communicating that they trust staff& value open comms (via @ZenLenton)
  • I like AXA’s Ourspace, very neat, proves that on ROI the R doesn’t have 2b big if the I is small (via @elgreco66)

Also don’t forget to hear what Jon Iwata, SVP Marketing & Communications at IBM has to say about social media as an internal tool.

Lee Bryant, CEO, Headshift

Why enterprise 2.0 will help you in a recession

Lee started off his presentation with what I call a very powerful mission statement…

Trust is cheaper than control

There’s not much explanation that could follow that except than to say it again and again.

Trust is cheaper than control

Trust is cheaper than control

Trust is cheaper than control

There is nothing worse than a company that doesn’t trust their employees.  Adults are treated like children and therefore sometimes will act like children.

Well according to @leebryant “adding a social layer to enterprise tools can rejuvenate old, unloved systems.  Make SAP your facebook friend today”.  (via @sammarshall). @sammarchall also captured another interesting thought which is “the intranet was supposed ot be the internet in your organisation. But the intranet hasn’t had same evolutionary forces to improve it”.  I couldn’t agree more! Why hasn’t the intranet emulated the internet? The infrastructure is there now and you could even use open source, just like the internet!

I stumbled upon a great article titled “The Challenges, Evolution, and Success Factors of the Enterprise Intranet” by Jeremiah Owyang. One of my favourite bloggers and web strategist.

He outlines some great Success Factors for Successful Enterprise Intranet that I know you will find useful!

1) A centralized body that controls the User Experience. A group that can define the design, look and feel, user interface, navigation, taxonomy, and information architecture of a site. They are also empowered to enforce this regardless of polical structure.
2) Business and personal users have freedom to publish: Although the constraints for consistency are setup, the business teams are empowered to control their own content, to quickly publish, and to modify at will. A balance is needed between them.
3) Expiration of content: The worst thing that happens to an intranet is the layer and layers of retired content that is overlayed on it. The intranet team should auto-review content that hasn’t been modified after X quarters or years, identify the creator, ask if it’s valid and remove if not.
4) IT gets ahead of the need: IT needs to move away from thinking of the intranet as a system to maintain, but as a system to grow, develop and constantly build on top of. Failure to do so will result in business teams finding their own third-party software, installing or running on a remote server.
5) A social sandbox for employees: Currently, many employees are sharing their personal and business lives on third party social networks like Facebook, MySpace, Bebo and to some degree LinkedIn. In many situations the opportunity for self-expression or to share personal information (even in the context of the workplace) is not supported by the enterprise. Companies should provide a social networking like service for employees to connect, share, build and further relationships on the intrarnet. Clearly delineate this is separate from the other area of the website, but give freedom for unique ideas to spread, grow, and be built.

So, what are you waiting for? Start cracking on your intranets! :-)

Thijs Sprangers & Menno Braakman, Social Media Consultant, Krem

Case studies of creating success with corporate social networking

What’s blended networking??

I loved it when Thijs said that face-to-face interaction isn’t replaced by online. This forum is ‘blended networking’ = offline + online interaction (via @SarahBea).  Whenever I’m trying to explain to social media sceptics, I always try to remind them that the progress in online communication such as social media is not there to rob you of all your current offline initiatives. They are there to complement them and support where offline initiatives can’t reach.

So when Thijs said what we were doing was ‘blended networking’, I was pleased to hear that from now on, this is what I will be calling it.

Let me introduce you to the “Blended networking strategies for this project!” ;-)

Thijs also mentioned that corporate social networking is about turning about turning contacts into ambassadors (via @theredrocket).  He also reminded organizations to “make sure you fish in all the social pools that your clients and employees swim in” (via @awebbmaster).

P.O.S.T. from Groundswell

Have you read Groundswell??? If you haven’t, YOU MUST! Thijs outlined the some juicy details on the method found in Groundswell called POST. Check it out!

I definitely could not talk about Groundswell without forcing my readers to watch this video with Groundswell author, Charlene Li talking about social media. It will be the best 45 mins/time investment you will ever do for yourself and your organization if social media is what is on your mind!

Hope you’ve found this summary useful! Look out for the next one :-)

About Liz Azyan

Liz is a CREATIVE digital professional dedicated to helping individuals, governments and businesses realize their digital goals. She offers digital consultancy services on her website LizAzyan.com Liz is also a Google Fellowship Recipient (individuals selected based on their work and initiative in the arenas of technology, politics and social entrepreneurship), an invited expert panel on the Guardian’s Public Leader Network and has spoken at many public events and conferences on the subject of digital engagement.

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