Welcome!

Virtualization Authors: Dana Gardner, Carmen Gonzalez, Elizabeth White, Liz McMillan, Paul Speciale

Related Topics: Web 2.0

Web 2.0: Article

Bringing Business Value - Integrating Web 2.0 Tools in the Enterprise

From Web 2.0 to Enterprise 2.0

Web 2.0 tools are doing a wonderful job of providing consumers with cool and productive new ways of performing common, simple tasks over the Internet. These tools primarily perform a single task such as allowing consumers to manage their photos, read their favorite newsfeeds, express themselves online through blogs, and communicate with friends via social networks. However, the business environment is usually much more complex since the end user needs to accomplish a series of tasks. As a result, the solutions used in a business environment tend to be broader in scope and require tools with richer functionality and higher standards of robustness and security.

 Another key difference is that enterprise “communities” already exist and tools are used to improve the degree of collaboration between the members of this “community.” In contrast, consumer communities were formed when social networking tools such as Facebook or Twitter were created.

For example, a marketing department may leverage such tools to drive increased collaboration between its extended team, which includes its marketing department, design/interactive agency and public relations agency. This “virtual community” of people around a business relationship already interacts with each other via phone, email and instant messaging – the new tools just integrate into these communications and make them better. In contrast, the Facebook community of thousands of people only came together and started interacting with each other after a critical mass of users decided to use that tool. These differences imply that if you wanted to take Web 2.0 collaboration technologies and deploy them within your business environment, they will not realize their expected potential unless they are fully integrated into the organization’s business process. Let’s look at it more closely.

A project involves a team of people working together to ensure that the tasks on hand are completed on time. The project manager creates a project plan and then works with each team member to ensure that they clearly understand their tasks, schedules, and dependencies. In addition, project managers and team members must continuously communicate with each other to ensure they are all on the same page with respect to project specifications, revisions, and assumptions. Finally project managers must communicate and collaborate with team members to understand the status of their tasks to make sure the project is on plan or it needs to be updated with new schedules. All these activities require extensive collaboration between the players, which today happens via email, meetings, and other ad-hoc tools. Since the schedule updates, documents, and project plans are communicated today via different methods, they usually fall out of sync – so everyone is no longer on the same page. The following figure depicts this issue.



Introducing stand-alone wikis and forums may drive collaboration within project teams, but they still maintain communication and collaboration of various things on different tracks and do not help to keep team members on the same page with respect to schedules, dependencies, and project specifications. True team collaboration can only be achieved by bringing these elements together under the same umbrella, where projects are planned and executed so that users’ opinions, knowledge, and feedback will add value on top of the essential project management tools the organization requires. This integration can streamline project management and collaboration and make it efficient, leading to a more predictable and successful execution of projects – after all a successful project is 20 percent planning and 80 percent execution.

Loosely integrating these capabilities does not solve the problem. As long as schedules, dependencies, project documents and team communication is managed in different software tools, the potential for these elements falling out of sync remains very high. When things are not on the same page, the project is very likely to fall behind schedule, suffer quality issues, or even fail.

Web 2.0 technologies applied to enterprise solutions is called Enterprise 2.0 – a combination of innovative, collaborative and easy-to-use Web 2.0 tools with powerful, robust and process-driven enterprise software. Enterprise 2.0 addresses business processes that require collaboration. Collaborative project execution is an example of an application of such technology. These solutions seamlessly integrate collaboration technology into project management processes to ensure that the entire project team is on the same page and executing the plan. The team members get an email from the system containing an embedded form querying them about task status and they reply back to this email with the status data. The systems automatically consolidate all the email responses and use them to keep the project status current; project tracking becomes automatic and managers save a lot of time by not having to chase team members to understand where they are with their tasks. The solutions then automatically provide alerts and highlights to allow managers to stay on top of their project's ever-changing status and proactively eliminate unpleasant surprises. This allows them to focus on addressing issues to keep the project on track rather than collecting project status data.

These solutions also leverage team-sharing technology to store/share documents, notes, and discussion threads with each individual work item within the project plan, providing team members an easy way to share their knowledge and remain in sync with each other for every task that they are responsible for. As a result, everyone within the team is on the same page, so more time is spent on project execution rather than managing team members and their individual knowledge and tasks. These tools provide a range of options for the team, making it that much easier to understand their directives, voice their opinions, and provide timely feedback.

There is no trivial transition from Web 2.0 to Enterprise 2.0 – however, the example above shows how they can enable and empower an existing business “community” only when they are fully integrated with the business processes.

More Stories By Avinoam Nowogrodski

Avinoam Nowogrodski is the CEO of Clarizen (www.clarizen.com), a provider of Project Execution solutions. Clarizen has seen tremendous interest in its product by focusing on collaborative project execution, rather than project planning.

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


@ThingsExpo Stories
The 3rd International Internet of @ThingsExpo, co-located with the 16th International Cloud Expo - to be held June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY - announces that its Call for Papers is now open. The Internet of Things (IoT) is the biggest idea since the creation of the Worldwide Web more than 20 years ago.
Cultural, regulatory, environmental, political and economic (CREPE) conditions over the past decade are creating cross-industry solution spaces that require processes and technologies from both the Internet of Things (IoT), and Data Management and Analytics (DMA). These solution spaces are evolving into Sensor Analytics Ecosystems (SAE) that represent significant new opportunities for organizations of all types. Public Utilities throughout the world, providing electricity, natural gas and water, are pursuing SmartGrid initiatives that represent one of the more mature examples of SAE. We have s...
The Internet of Things (IoT) is going to require a new way of thinking and of developing software for speed, security and innovation. This requires IT leaders to balance business as usual while anticipating for the next market and technology trends. Cloud provides the right IT asset portfolio to help today’s IT leaders manage the old and prepare for the new. Today the cloud conversation is evolving from private and public to hybrid. This session will provide use cases and insights to reinforce the value of the network in helping organizations to maximize their company’s cloud experience.
Disruptive macro trends in technology are impacting and dramatically changing the "art of the possible" relative to supply chain management practices through the innovative use of IoT, cloud, machine learning and Big Data to enable connected ecosystems of engagement. Enterprise informatics can now move beyond point solutions that merely monitor the past and implement integrated enterprise fabrics that enable end-to-end supply chain visibility to improve customer service delivery and optimize supplier management. Learn about enterprise architecture strategies for designing connected systems tha...
IoT is still a vague buzzword for many people. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Mike Kavis, Vice President & Principal Cloud Architect at Cloud Technology Partners, will discuss the business value of IoT that goes far beyond the general public's perception that IoT is all about wearables and home consumer services. The presentation will also discuss how IoT is perceived by investors and how venture capitalist access this space. Other topics to discuss are barriers to success, what is new, what is old, and what the future may hold.
Whether you're a startup or a 100 year old enterprise, the Internet of Things offers a variety of new capabilities for your business. IoT style solutions can help you get closer your customers, launch new product lines and take over an industry. Some companies are dipping their toes in, but many have already taken the plunge, all while dramatic new capabilities continue to emerge. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Reid Carlberg, Senior Director, Developer Evangelism at salesforce.com, to discuss real-world use cases, patterns and opportunities you can harness today.
All major researchers estimate there will be tens of billions devices – computers, smartphones, tablets, and sensors – connected to the Internet by 2020. This number will continue to grow at a rapid pace for the next several decades. With major technology companies and startups seriously embracing IoT strategies, now is the perfect time to attend @ThingsExpo in Silicon Valley. Learn what is going on, contribute to the discussions, and ensure that your enterprise is as "IoT-Ready" as it can be!
Noted IoT expert and researcher Joseph di Paolantonio (pictured below) has joined the @ThingsExpo faculty. Joseph, who describes himself as an “Independent Thinker” from DataArchon, will speak on the topic of “Smart Grids & Managing Big Utilities.” Over his career, Joseph di Paolantonio has worked in the energy, renewables, aerospace, telecommunications, and information technology industries. His expertise is in data analysis, system engineering, Bayesian statistics, data warehouses, business intelligence, data mining, predictive methods, and very large databases (VLDB). Prior to DataArcho...
Software AG helps organizations transform into Digital Enterprises, so they can differentiate from competitors and better engage customers, partners and employees. Using the Software AG Suite, companies can close the gap between business and IT to create digital systems of differentiation that drive front-line agility. We offer four on-ramps to the Digital Enterprise: alignment through collaborative process analysis; transformation through portfolio management; agility through process automation and integration; and visibility through intelligent business operations and big data.
There will be 50 billion Internet connected devices by 2020. Today, every manufacturer has a propriety protocol and an app. How do we securely integrate these "things" into our lives and businesses in a way that we can easily control and manage? Even better, how do we integrate these "things" so that they control and manage each other so our lives become more convenient or our businesses become more profitable and/or safe? We have heard that the best interface is no interface. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Chris Matthieu, Co-Founder & CTO at Octoblu, Inc., will discuss how thes...
Last week, while in San Francisco, I used the Uber app and service four times. All four experiences were great, although one of the drivers stopped for 30 seconds and then left as I was walking up to the car. He must have realized I was a blogger. None the less, the next car was just a minute away and I suffered no pain. In this article, my colleague, Ved Sen, Global Head, Advisory Services Social, Mobile and Sensors at Cognizant shares his experiences and insights.
We are reaching the end of the beginning with WebRTC and real systems using this technology have begun to appear. One challenge that faces every WebRTC deployment (in some form or another) is identity management. For example, if you have an existing service – possibly built on a variety of different PaaS/SaaS offerings – and you want to add real-time communications you are faced with a challenge relating to user management, authentication, authorization, and validation. Service providers will want to use their existing identities, but these will have credentials already that are (hopefully) ir...
Can call centers hang up the phones for good? Intuitive Solutions did. WebRTC enabled this contact center provider to eliminate antiquated telephony and desktop phone infrastructure with a pure web-based solution, allowing them to expand beyond brick-and-mortar confines to a home-based agent model. It also ensured scalability and better service for customers, including MUY! Companies, one of the country's largest franchise restaurant companies with 232 Pizza Hut locations. This is one example of WebRTC adoption today, but the potential is limitless when powered by IoT. Attendees will learn rea...
From telemedicine to smart cars, digital homes and industrial monitoring, the explosive growth of IoT has created exciting new business opportunities for real time calls and messaging. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Ivelin Ivanov, CEO and Co-Founder of Telestax, will share some of the new revenue sources that IoT created for Restcomm – the open source telephony platform from Telestax. Ivelin Ivanov is a technology entrepreneur who founded Mobicents, an Open Source VoIP Platform, to help create, deploy, and manage applications integrating voice, video and data. He is the co-founder ...
The Internet of Things (IoT) promises to create new business models as significant as those that were inspired by the Internet and the smartphone 20 and 10 years ago. What business, social and practical implications will this phenomenon bring? That's the subject of "Monetizing the Internet of Things: Perspectives from the Front Lines," an e-book released today and available free of charge from Aria Systems, the leading innovator in recurring revenue management.
The Internet of Things will put IT to its ultimate test by creating infinite new opportunities to digitize products and services, generate and analyze new data to improve customer satisfaction, and discover new ways to gain a competitive advantage across nearly every industry. In order to help corporate business units to capitalize on the rapidly evolving IoT opportunities, IT must stand up to a new set of challenges.
There’s Big Data, then there’s really Big Data from the Internet of Things. IoT is evolving to include many data possibilities like new types of event, log and network data. The volumes are enormous, generating tens of billions of logs per day, which raise data challenges. Early IoT deployments are relying heavily on both the cloud and managed service providers to navigate these challenges. In her session at 6th Big Data Expo®, Hannah Smalltree, Director at Treasure Data, to discuss how IoT, Big Data and deployments are processing massive data volumes from wearables, utilities and other mach...
P2P RTC will impact the landscape of communications, shifting from traditional telephony style communications models to OTT (Over-The-Top) cloud assisted & PaaS (Platform as a Service) communication services. The P2P shift will impact many areas of our lives, from mobile communication, human interactive web services, RTC and telephony infrastructure, user federation, security and privacy implications, business costs, and scalability. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Erik Lagerway, Co-founder of Hookflash, will walk through the shifting landscape of traditional telephone and voice s...
While great strides have been made relative to the video aspects of remote collaboration, audio technology has basically stagnated. Typically all audio is mixed to a single monaural stream and emanates from a single point, such as a speakerphone or a speaker associated with a video monitor. This leads to confusion and lack of understanding among participants especially regarding who is actually speaking. Spatial teleconferencing introduces the concept of acoustic spatial separation between conference participants in three dimensional space. This has been shown to significantly improve comprehe...
The Internet of Things is tied together with a thin strand that is known as time. Coincidentally, at the core of nearly all data analytics is a timestamp. When working with time series data there are a few core principles that everyone should consider, especially across datasets where time is the common boundary. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Jim Scott, Director of Enterprise Strategy & Architecture at MapR Technologies, will discuss single-value, geo-spatial, and log time series data. By focusing on enterprise applications and the data center, he will use OpenTSDB as an example...