A Wiki In the Sky

Brisbane_Airport_logo

Brisbane Airport logo

In previous posts I have talked about Wikis and how they can help improve business processes at an organization. If you haven’t my previous blog, you might ask, what is a Wiki? A Wiki is a form of website platform that allows users to easily share and gather information. A famous example of a Wiki is Wikipedia, an online collaboratively edited encyclopaedia. What makes Wikipedia so popular is that it has amassed such vast amounts of knowledge because it allows anyone, anywhere in the world create and edit pages and share their knowledge. Not all changes made by the user will see that light of days, as administrators and active users tend to scrutinize any changes made to the site. This, among other things, is what makes the site stay alive and contain correct and up-to-date information.

The same can be done for enterprise wikis. It can allow a governing body setup a website where users can share and maintain information.
How can a Wiki benefit Brisbane Airport? First Brisbane Airport Corporation is a a large organization employing thousands and providing services for millions of customers every year.
For such a large corporation there are always areas that can benefit from change or upgrade in technology.

Implementing a Wiki could help BA reduce the overall load of emails that employees have to go through over a regular workday. Looking at the Dresdner Kleinwort Wasserstein Case Study we learn how DKW managed to reduce the email volume by 70%. It also helped the organization reduce the time it took to process additions to the intranet from 30 days to a single click of a button.

So for Brisbane Airport installing an internal Wiki could greatly improve the effectiveness of certain business processes.

The wiki could also be structured in a way that would restrict sections based on departments and groups, and only allow employees from each group to have access to the one they belong to. This would increase the security and prevent unauthorized access to information.

Implementation

How will the wiki be implemented?
The rollout will contain multiple stages, each expanding on the previous stage.

First Stage: The initial stage would be to do a cost/benefit analysis to see the feasibility of implementation having a benefit for the organization.

Second Stage: To find the right tools and technologies for the job, in this case what Wiki software and how to host it.

Third Stage: Creating a small test roll-out for a small segment of the organization. This would see the employee reactions to the technology and also help discover any initial issues.

Fourth Stage: This is the final stage of the process. Depending on the results from all the previous stages, if everything went successful the wiki will be opened to all departments and employees.

Conclusion

After successful rollout and implementation of the Wiki system the Brisbane Airport Corporation would see great improvements in how knowledge is shared amongst employees. If everything is as expected the corporation can expect to see results similar to those of the Dresdner Kleinwort case study.

References:
Brisbane Airport Logo
Dresdner Kleinwort Wasserstein Case Study

Return On Investment in Enterprise 2.0

What is Return On Investment?

It is the expected outcome of an investment; it used to evaluate the efficiency of an investment in finance and economics. ROI can come in the form of, cost reductions, savings, decrease of hours spent by employees reading emails or other things that might benefit the company financially.

Determining the ROI of Enterprise 2.0

This figure displays the usual model of ROI for an Enterprise 2.0 effort. It show that the initial cost is higher than the return, but as time goes and the tools are embraced by staff the returns rise above the cost.

How can Web 2.0 benefit the Enterprise?

In my one of my previous blog posts I mentioned how implementing an internal Wiki can help retain the collective knowledge of an organizations. This is something that might be difficult to measure financially, but it can have a return nonetheless.

Other times the benefits associated with implementing Web 2.0 tools in the Enterprise can be unexpected, as in the Mckinsey case, where the intention was that the tools would assist induction of new staff, instead recruiting staff used the tools to share recruiting tips.

AT&T

AT&T Logo

AT&T Logo

AT&T is an American Telecommunications Corporation headquartered in Dallas, Texas. AT&T is one of the largest providers of broadband subscriptions and is the largest provider of mobile telephony and fixed telephony in the United States.

In the early 2000s the company had been acquired and merged with three other companies, this caused a tremendous growth in company staff, from 70,000 to 300,000. This provided a need for Web 2.0 tools to improve collaboration between employees.

What they did was, starting in 2004, implement a range of Web 2.0 tools such as Enterprise Blogs, Wikis, Forums, SharePoint etc. Demand for these tools was slow at first, but once adoption started the demand skyrocketed. Two years after the initial rollout the statistics showed:

  • Over 37,000 Collaborative Sites growing at 124%
  • Over 4 Million Documents Housed and Managed
  • User Awareness of 98% of Total Population
  • Average 8 Million Page View per MonthSource: AT&T Collaborative Integration

Dell

Dell Logo

Dell Logo

Dell is an American multinational computer technology corporation. Dell develops, sells and supports computers and related products and services.

Dell is one of the many organisations to incorporate SocialText’s Wiki and enterprise collaboration tools.

Dell embraced Web 2.0 technologies in their call centres. What the call centres do is handle exceptions. They do this by answering customer calls, listen to the problem and give the customer answers and solutions.

SocialText’s Wiki lets Dell’s employees collaborate and share their knowledge among themselves. They document the solution by creating and tagging a post for each call. Having an extensive database of knowledge has lowered the number of clicks required by the employee, from 20 down to 4 and decreased the average call time by 10-20%. Decreased call time saves the organisation money in costs and increases customer satisfaction as they are given answers faster.

This is yet another example of how embracing Web 2.0 can give a high Return On Investment. Organisations that are embracing Web 2.0 technologies are increasing productivity, customer satisfaction and saving costs. This gives them a competitive advantage to those that do not use Web 2.0. Can you afford to wait?

References

ZDNet, Determining the ROI of Enterprise 2.0

AT&T Collaborative Integration

Enterprise Wikis Seen As a Way to End ‘Reply-All’ E-Mail Threads

Domino’s Social Media Disaster


Social Media Policy

It is becoming more and more important to have a well thought out social media policy.
In my last post I talked about the benefits and risks of embracing Web 2.0 technologies in the Enterprise. In this post I will talk about the dangers of not having a Social Media Policy.

It is important to have a policy that can protect the company against the dangers of the social media and its usage.

Some of which are:

  • Loss of confidential information
  • Breach of copyright
  • Defamation
  • False statements and or misleading and deceptive conduct
  • The tort of Passing off
  • Reputation risk
  • Statutory risks including
    • Breaches of the Privacy Act
    • Breach of continuous disclosure obligations in the case of listed public companies
    • Discrimination
    • Orgranisation and industry specific risks posed by the organisations operating environment

Domino’s Pizza

Domino’s Pizza is an international pizza delivery corporation originating from the United States. The fast-food chain has restaurants in most large cities all over the world. Dominos is the second-largest pizza chain in the U.S. after Pizza Hut and has more than nine thousand corporate and franchised around the world.

Domino’s, similarly, to many other companies have had their problems with the rise of social media and its effects on the world.

What happened was two Domino’s employees posted a video on YouTube with unsavory pictures of how they prepared the food. This video quickly went viral with just under a million views on YouTube and mentions all around the web.


Although the actors in the original video claimed their actions merely were a prank and that the pizza was never actually left the store, the impact of the video was enormous.

Even people who’ve been with us as loyal customers for 10, 15, 20 years, people are second-guessing their relationship with Domino’s, and that’s not fair. -Tim McIntyre, Domino’s spokesman
Link

Not only was the publics perception of Domino’s heavily affected, the stock market reacted similarly, as Domino’s stock price dropped 10% over the week costing shareholders millions.

Link: Domino’s loses 10% of its value in one week

 

But what Domino’s did that prevented the situation from going out of hand was that they quickly responded. Their response came in the form of a video where the president of Domino’s, Patrick Doyle, publicly apologized on behalf of the company.

  • Reputation risks

In the case of the Domino’s disaster the main legal risk is the risk of losing ones reputation. A company’s reputation, is one of the most valuable assets that it can hold.

The video that was posted online had an enormous effect on the company’s reputation and even though the responsible parties were disciplined, the damage had been done.

This is where a well thought out Social Media Policy comes in to play. A well created can help mitigate the risks associated with Social Media. It should first and foremost prevent such disasters from happening in the first place, secondly it should provide instructions on what to do in case of a disaster and also how employees are bound to follow the policy, and where the repercussions are if they SMP is not followed.

Social Media is not to be taken lightly, as it can affect your company both in a good way and also a bad way.

Social Media Scandals

Pepsi Naming Contest Trolled By 4Chan

Top 5 Twitter Scandals from the Olympics

Case Study: United Airlines Loses Millions on Social Media

Urban Outfitters? Social Media is on Line 1– Please PICK UP!

Further readings:

NYTIMES, Video Prank at Domino’s Taints Brand

Mr Damian O’Keefe v Williams Muir’s Pty Limited T/A troy Williams The Good Guys

Legal risks of social networking for business

Do organisations need social media policies?

The Growing Risks of Social Media

Social Networking the enemy within

Risks and Benefits with Enterprise 2.0

As with the introduction of all new technologies there comes a time where companies have to weigh in on the benefits and risks of embracing these new technologies.

This is doubly true for Enterprise 2.0, which is a name given for the case where the enterprise incorporates Web 2.0 technologies in to their business.

Benefits

There are multiple benefits to embracing Web 2.0 technologies in to the Enterprise, and in this post I will talk about some of them along with the risks associated with using Web 2.0 in the enterprise.

Some of the benefits that have been shown to be valid are:

  • Enhanced Personal Effectiveness
  • Improved team performance
  • Increased productivity
  • Easier collaboration, better team effectiveness
  • Faster innovation and product development
  • More efficient project management

One possible way of incorporating Web 2.0 technologies in your Enterprise is to set-up a Wiki. A Wiki is a website that can be used for many things, such as a place to keep company collective knowledge. What makes a Wiki unique is that it generally allows the user to add content. This is excellent for Staff, where they can add and update information or modify erroneous items. Wiki’s are an excellent way of increasing productivity and improve team performance.

Studies suggest that around 25-50% of communication between knowledge workers remains tacit and un-captured. 6 Benefits of Enterprise 2.0, Slide 15

From the whole enterprise perspective, these unreachable pieces of information are knowledge leaks. This means that alot of knowledge get shared between workers in a way that is un-captured, and information that is un-captured gets easily lost or forgotten. This is why having a location where information can quickly be added is a great way of growing the collective intelligence of the enterprise.

Another excellent use for the Enterprise 2.0 is that it can be used for expertise identification.

Now enter E2.0 tools for the enterprise and you are quickly able to tie people to content and people to people. After time you are able to identify people related to a topic or function not by job title alone but by their real life interactions.

-Scott Gavin, Top 3 Business Benefits of (internal) Enterprise 2.0

What Scott is talking about in his blog post is using Enterprise 2.0 technologies to create a database of company employees where each employee can add their fields of expertise and other relevant information. This information can then be used by other to pinpoint exactly which person to contact, instead of looking through a list of names with associated job titles.

The average Intel employee dumps one day a week trying to find people with the experience & expertise plus the relevant information to do their job…Let me just say that it is motivating us

to take action. — Laurie Buczek, Enterprise Social Media Program Manager, Intel

Laurie Buczek, Enterprise Social Media Program Manager at Intel emphasizes the same point as Scott Gavin brings forth in his blog post. Large companies have taken notice on how employees work and what they spend their time on. Having employees spending “one day a week” on finding people with experience and expertise is time, which could be used adding value to the company. The enterprise is noticing these value drains and is more and more trying to improve the overall workflow and increase the value added by the employees.

Risks

As with all things there are certain risks with using Enterprise 2.0 tools and technologies. Here are some risks that have to be taken in to account when implementing Web 2.0 technologies in your enterprise.

  • Negative comments on internal sites
  • Negative comments on external sites

Employees could leave negative and degrading comments on intranet sites. This is a risk on any site where anyone has the access to create and add content. But to battle this the company could enable a certain set of policies that disallows such behaviour.

Another danger with using social technologies can be negative effects from external sources.

The Intrawest Placemaking Case

Intrawest Wiki Intranet

Intrawest Placemaking is a real estate development division of Intrawest, a Fortress Investment Group company. Placemaking was founded in 1976 as an urban real estate development firm, Intrawest now owns and operates multiple ski resorts, as well as warm-weather resorts and golf courses. Placemaking develops the real estate assets at these resorts by master-planning the villages and by designing, building and selling luxury resort accommodations. Placemaking has 250 employees in 7 regional office locations in North America and Europe.

Placemaking weighed the risks and benefits of implementing Enterprise 2.0 in their enterprise and decided to implement a Wiki intranet platform for employees.

Intrawest Placemaking’s wiki intranet allows practically unrestricted editing to all 250 employees. This has led to a tenfold increase in use over the previous intranet, and some excellent examples of knowledge sharing: One manager created a page with an idea that saved the company $500,000.

Intrawest Placemaking is a great success story and a perfect example of how Enterprise 2.0 can help your business improve worker output and save the company money.

References

Laurie Buczek, Enterprise 2.0 Efficient Collaboration and Knowledge Exchange, Slide 34

Top 3 Business Benefits of (internal) Enterprise 2.0

6 Benefits of Enterprise 2.0, Slide 15

Interesting Reads relating to the subject:

Advantages of Enterprise 2.0 ERP Systems

Tools for the new Web

The Web is ever expanding and the amount of users that are connected increases every day. Along with the expansion of the Internet there is the increasing popularity of Web 2.0. Web 2.0 is a name given the paradigm shift from the old web, which contained mostly static content, to the new Web where the User becomes the Author and content creator. These new Web 2.0 tools allow users to generate content and to seamlessly share it with the rest of the world.

I have gone about trying out some new tools that fall in the category of Web 2.0. Below I will describe some of them.

Dropbox

Dropbox Logo Dropbox is a small Application that you can install on your PC, Laptop or Smart Phone. The idea behind Dropbox is simple: You have a folder that syncs. That synced folder can be accessed from any devices as well as from the dropbox.com website, giving you instant access to all your files wherever you are. Michael Wolfe on Quora sums up dropbox perfectly Link.

Dropbox is extremely useful, not only for synchronizing files between your devices, but also as a back-up tool. This is one of the main things that I use it for. I keep all my University assignments and important paperwork backed-up on Dropbox. So that in case my computer decides to burn down, or stolen, then I still have access to all my important documents.

Another thing that dropbox has proven itself very handy for, is collaborative work on projects. Whenever we have group assignments we put all our files on dropbox. This way we all, at all times have the latest version of each document. This completely eliminates the need for sending files via email, using flash-drives etc. Quoting Steve Jobs “It just works”.

dropbox.com

LinkedIn

LinkedIn LogoNow that I am nearing the end of my time at University I have decided to have a look at LinkedIn. LinkedIn is a social networking website for professionals, think of it as facebook, but for your professional life. What LinkedIn lets you do is create a profile and upload your Resume. Once your profile is completed with your resume and everything you can create connections with other professionals that you know. LinkedIn is great for establishing and improving your networking skills.

And the number of recruiting agencies that utilize websites such as LinkedIn to find potential employees is growing fast. It is all about making yourself available to the world.

LinkedIn

Cloud9 IDE

Cloud9IDE Doing research for some interesting Web 2.0 tools I came across Cloud9 IDE. Cloud9 is an online code editor that has extensive support for collaborative projects. It makes it easy to create a project and work together with other people. I am going to make an attempt at using Cloud9 with the group I am with for my last semester project.

Cloud9 also makes it easy to publish the code to a version control system such as GitHub.

Cloud9

The Internet is truly making the world a smaller place and with the help of Web 2.0 tools team collaboration becomes a simpler task every day. Not only do these Web 2.0 tools simplify collaborative efforts they also make it easy for Professionals to expose themselves for the World.

All these tools have immense utility and if you have not tried them before, I can highly recommend giving them a chance.