What’s ‘social’ about Social Enterprise Technology?
Sometimes, the conversations about our latest innovation Social Enterprise Technology are derailed by the connotation that the word ‘social’ carries today viz. social-media. It is incumbent upon us, as pioneers of this innovation, to clarify as to what we really mean by ‘social’.
Oxford Dictionary defines social as ‘needing companionship and therefore best suited to living in communities’; it further elaborates the word as ‘relating to or designed for activities in which people meet each other for pleasure’. When we categorize someone as ‘social’, what we’re referring to the trait of ‘willing to talk and engage in activities with other people; friendly’; likewise, when associated to some place, occasion or activity, what we imply is it is ‘characterized by friendliness or social interaction’.
This is where we’re coming from; we’re actually getting back to the basics.
Data is the new oil. If you look at it, a modern enterprise is at its core a ‘data enterprise’.
When you look at data you don’t imagine a series of numbers spread over pages.
You want the data to tell a story.
And this story, in turn, is to be shared with colleagues who can add layers to the story. Or, can even introduce a twist in the tale.
And then, we need to be able to find if there’s an undercurrent or a hidden facet of the story.
Data visualization marks only the first step in this direction. Given the increasing complexities in business landscape, we need data conversation techniques where data jumps out from the screen and talks to you. We require that insights are no longer elusive but forthcoming to you. Where data chaos is re-organized into streamlined waves of meaningful information.
We’re envisioning a world where data proactively lends itself for high leverage through intuitive, interactive methods.
The idea of socializing ‘data’, though a first-of-its-kind appears deceptively familiar. Because, we instinctively understand that we can harness the power of data only after the raw material is converted into a finer form. That our approach represents a giant leap forward can be deduced only upon a closer inspection.
That however cannot be said of socializing ‘you’, the business-user (or knowledge worker).
The inability of current enterprise applications to handle diverse collaboration needs results in company-wide bottlenecks. This further dampens business agility in ways that a modern enterprise cannot afford to.
Today, multiple communication lines are in use to meet the enterprise collaboration needs. Together, they are supposed to cater to the entire spectrum of needs. Factually, they end up in scattering information across multiple channels, thus pulverizing the coherent form.
This is the dominant paradigm today.
Further, in absence of provisioning for context-driven collaboration, much time and effort are expended to first establish the context with fellow business-users with whom one wishes to collaborate.
The collaboration infrastructure behaves in an unintelligent way, doing the job of a delivery man, rather than a data evangelist who promotes a data-centric approach and guides the user through the processes.
We’re looking at an enterprise world where collaboration infrastructure is not something in the background, but which plays an active role in shaping the conversations in the business environment. Here, it can direct you to the right expertise and resource, grasping your real-time needs.
Breaking the Wall of Confusion
Since elements within the business-users and enterprise infrastructure are functioning in isolation, i.e. without being social across the ecosystem, it leads to a creating a wall of confusion between them.
While people are working at frantic pace, they’re throwing work at each other without realizing its role in the total scheme of affairs and what it means to the colleague. The wall effectively prevents them from seeing something hidden in plain sight. Like a flag in the wind, data flutters across the system without being recognized for the value contained in it.
At Digital Harbor, ‘social’ has been reimagined as a push to both socialize ‘data’ and socialize ‘you’ (the business-user). It makes the ‘data’ sociable to you, enabling you to have a conversation with the data. Meanwhile, it also makes ‘you’ sociable to others, catapulting the collaboration to an unprecedented level of sophistication.
Nothing ‘social-media’ about it.