It seems that lately, however, social business adoption has moved from “nice to have” to a strategic imperative. There are three intertwined trends that seem to be supercharging social business adoption: social, mobile & cloud.
The growth of social networks for business. Social networking accounts for 22% of all time spent online. Real business is taking place today in public and private social networks. It has moved far beyond using LinkedIn for recruiting or Facebook for consumer marketing outreach. The benefits accrue quickly from being able to communicate and collaborate easily with extended networks of employees, partners, customers, across internal and external social networks.
The increase of mobile computing. By the end of 2011, more smartphones shipped than PCs. And Apple sold more iOS devices in 2011 than they sold Macs in 28 years. “Bring your own device” (BYOD) to work is an undeniable trend in the workplace, bringing freedom and convenience for users, but headaches for IT. Users want to interact anytime, anywhere, with localized, contextual content. And they aren’t afraid to sidestep IT if they don’t get the access they want. IT can try to ban access, but more often than not, needs to rethink their approach to mobile and secure those mobile devices to minimize risks from loss, theft or misuse.
The continued rise of Cloud computing. With Forrester alone estimating enterprise cloud computing to grow to over $240 billion by 2020, it’s hard to find ANY current IT project today not considering cloud-based deployments. The conversation is no longer one of outright rejection due to security and quality-of-service concerns. Instead, the discussion is about the right mix of capabilities for the business. What should be delivered by cloud vs. on premises? How do I ensure new services are integrated with the solutions I already have in place? What’s the right policy and governance model I should be looking for from my cloud services providers? What level of customization do I really need, and how much standardization can I get away with? Despite cloud’s increasing sophistication and security in applications, information stores, transaction processing, or even analytics, critical questions still remain.
What is your experience? What critical capabilities are you looking for? How are you combining these three trends? What’s standing in your way? We’d love to hear your thoughts!