October 13, 2010
Enterprise social computing technologies are beginning to spill over into the corporate environment with increasing frequency. These useful tools are fun and a great way to keep up with your friends and family, but they can also be used to keep up with your business colleagues and team members. Technologies such as activity streams, microblogging, shared collaboration tools, and rich clients can help keep your team members connected and up to date with the real-time information that they need to be able to perform their job.
Activity streams can give team members a way to subscribe to information provided by other team members or other groups that are critical to their performance. For example, an external group may publish technical specifications that are crucial to your project. If you subscribe to their group then you will know when they make the status update with the link attached that points to their technical specifications that you can then go out and access. The ability to be able to tap into enterprise social computing information is a huge benefit.
Microblogging is another tool that has been used for purely social purposes until recently. Microblogging gives team members a way to post critical information and for a group of subscribers to be able to quickly disseminate that information after they’re notified of the new post. Links, audio, and video can also be published in microblogs in order to make the experience richer and more interactive.
Users who find the information in these posts useful can then “tag” or “like” the post, which then allows all of their linked “friends” to see the post and have access to the content as well. This is almost a viral way of floating information to your enterprise social computing community.
Rich client software is also another social tool that most people already have on their smart phones or netbooks. Apps or widgets written for smart phones or network enabled computers give traveling team members the ability to stay connected even when they aren’t in the office. They can be just as efficient and productive as office employees, because they have access to the same real-time enterprise social computing technologies. They are able to keep their colleagues back in the office on their results, locations, and successes. Providing your employees both in the office and out the option of using these rich tools from anywhere, you are enabling them a way to be a cohesive information network. This will keep your organization running smoothly.
The enterprise social computing technology can usually be incorporated into your existing systems enabling them to enhance the resources you already have in place. They make email more useful and provide information in other ways that are simply not possible with other forms of communication. Activity streams also offer a news service that can be subscribed to by interested parties.
Microblogging provides an excellent group collaboration tool. Rich client software provides team members with multiple means of communication while they are in the office and on the road. What started out as a social phenomenon has now spilled over into the corporate world and will eventually change the way we communicate forever.
Enterprise social networking has become an important tool for businesses that value a constant flow of communication with their team members. As a software developer, Jon Harwokey utilizes activity streams with his team to keep them on the same page. Visit www.newsgator.com to see how they can benefit your business.