When ever I present on Enterprise social business, I emphasise having a set of capabilities that are designed as a platform. I thought I would use this post to explain a bit more about what I mean.
A platform to me is a set of inter-related components that are designed to be an integrated whole when combines, yet are able to be separated and deployed on a phased approach. Contrast to this is a more product centric approach, where integration is often a by-product of development evidenced by overlapping features in each component.
A great example of an integrated platform is with the IBM Collaboration Solutions portfolio.
The following video highlights what can happen when three separate components, IBM Lotus Notes Domino Social Edition, IBM SameTime Unified Telephony, and IBM Connections, are deployed and importantly, leveraged by users as part of their business processes. The following video, whilst highlighting a typical day in the life scenario for a fictitious Financial Services Account Manager, highlights the power of a Social Enterprise Platform, that is integrated by design.
One final comment. In this example the user is operating from their inbox and not from a browser in engaging Social capabilities. Why? The reason is quite simple.
Even though people like Gartner state that as many as 20% of workers will engage in Social Business activities via Browser based tools by 2015, that still leave a staggering 80% of employees who will still favour an inbox paradigm. The challenge is in how to entice these people to engage in more Social collaboration to move beyond email and into more productive, collaborative practices. As this video shows, IBM has successfully got this part right in my opinion.
Please watch the video below. It may be the best 6 minutes of your time you have spent today.