Enterprise 2.0 vs Web 2.0
By billy.cripe on Apr 21, 2009
Sometimes a reminder is all we need:
Andrew McAfee talks with Oracle's Sonny Singh last year about Web 2.0 and Enterprise 2.0
And then there's this great graphic from Ori Fishler over at the Enterprise Web 2.0 blog.
The article is well worth the read as it discusses the confluence and overlap between Web 2.0 (public social facing) and Enterprise 2.0 (internal, social, process oriented) capabilities. Most importantly, though, is that Ori focuses on specifics of the business case - a purpose factor that is vital to successful realization of any IT initiative - especially _____ 2.0 initiatives.
This point is alluded to by McAfee in the interview above. However it has largely been obscured by the hype and fervor over the technology (e.g. Twitter's recent meteoric rise in popularity). While I don't think there are m[any] E20 advocates who *really* believe in the "technology alone will save us / change us" mantra, it is true that the focus on traditional business drivers have largely taken a back seat to the cool factor. The E20 advocates are now waking up to the fact that cool *alone* doesn't sell well to businesses for employee (not public!) markets. That's because employees aren't markets - they're customers. They've already bought. They're on board. They're signed up. The company's obligation to them is support. So cool may attract new talent - but in this economy new, top talent is not as hard to attract - with or without an enterprise E20 platform.
So traditional business drivers like measurable productivity acceleration, measurable cost savings, measurable process efficiency boosts are more important than ever to justify expenditures on technology. While I have written from the beginning (here and here for example) that purpose and measurable results are important, others voices are re-emphasizing this point. The ROI discussion is re-emerging and not as a bludgeon with which to bash E2.0. You only need to look at articles like this to see how the discussion is changing as well as how the concept of ROI is evolving as well (as a side note, two of the customers quoted in the Forbes article are Oracle UCM customers).
Finally, don't fret if you've been on this roller-coaster for some time. Hutch Carpenter recently had a good (long) piece outlining where we are in the E2.0 adoption and awareness cycle. It's a ride but at least it is fun.