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This Lockdown DOES Feel Different

Faceforce shows the way with enterprise social networking

Obviously SalesForce.com (a major CRM player in the SAAS space - how was that for wanky business speak?) needs to be all over the 'social networking' side of 'Web 2.0' as it's the key component to any sort of Client Relationship Management (CRM) - it's all social, right?

As Facebook has opened up it's platform allowing others to write and fully integrate such useful applications as Zombie Attack, Pirates and My Favourite Cat What's Yours so SalesForce.com (SFDC) has done the same with it's AppExchange.

It was therefore a matter of time before the two met, and now they have in Faceforce

Read more about it at:

The fear of Enterprise 2.0


And so, as SalesForce.com and Facebook go about their business of making happen there is definitely a perceived 'fear' that organisations are displaying. Interestingly enough I have also been reading the Read/Write Web's Fear of Web 2.0 which makes the point that it is generally the IT Departments (love their cotton socks) that are having the biggest hurdles with this. Here's is Richard's conclusion which I echo:

It's clear that enterprises, or to be more exact IT decision-makers, still fear web 2.0. Yet they also see the value in it. So their natural inclination is to control the situation - only allow sanctioned web software in and enforce policies that limit use of web 2.0 technologies. That way, IT decision-makers reason, the company still gets the benefits of web 2.0 - but without the risks.

Yet web 2.0 is all about open-ness and collaboration. The latter is particularly important in enterprises. The real reason why IT fears web 2.0, as John Martellaro pointed out recently, is that it upsets the historical need for control and power in IT departments. The above graphs and data points from Forrester show that the reason web 2.0 is finding it difficult to penetrate the enterprise is not that IT can't see the value in it, but that they fear it may erode their control and power.

The answer may in part be ensuring that web 2.0 tools are secure and compliant, but equally it's going to take a change in mindset from IT to allow employees to collaborate and experiment. What do you think of the current state of web 2.0 in the enterprise? Have you seen signs that IT is opening up, losing its fear a little?



But it's happening ... how can organisations deal with it?

Column Two's Enterprise 2.0: working in the middle ground is a sensible approach to the above perceived problem:

Yes, we absolutely need the kinds of capabilities delivered by enterprise 2.0 technologies, and this addressing a huge unmet need within organisations. Can we stop their use? No. Should we try to stop or restrict their use? No.

We do need plans and strategies though, along with some simple guidance or governance for staff. We need to find much more mature ways of managing processes, and shaping outcomes. We need to let individuals and teams drive adoptions, but play a strong leadership role to ensure that the end outcome is desirable for all.

I would, however, caution that there is already a shift in midset from a lot of the people using the systems especially the younger ones as was highlighted at a meeting I had today where the question, "Why bother comment on a blog, it's just getting in the way of work", was answered by a young lady with, "But it's just like talking with your mates and this (MOSS) works just like Bebo" - stunned silence followed by cries of laughter and, "I feeel so old!"

The mindset has shifted. IT Departments need to catch-up quicker than they are.

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