Tag Archives: Enterprise 2.0

Working in a social enterprise: On boarding @salesforce experience


I’ve just completed my third week at salesforce.com and I wanted to share with you the light and colors of this amazing on-boarding.

My first day already had a special flavor. What would a geek like me do when arriving in the lobby? Foursquare it! And as I’ve included the @salesforce handle in my message that of course got spanned on Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook among others – I’m becoming lazy and all my accounts are chained- the salesforce team back in the Bay Area using Radian 6 spotted me within minutes as a new hire. What a surprise when I got a response message on Twitter from the official @salesforce feed stating “Welcome to the family”. I felt it as a social hug if you will, a good first impression of a social enterprise.

This very first day I could feel the energy, passion, commitment and team spirit of this fast growing company individuals. If you were not aware, Salesforce has been to date the B2B software vendor to reach the $2B mark the fastest. It was not Microsoft, Oracle nor SAP. Combined with the think different kind of attitude and this desire to show the world that cloud computing is a must for all enterprises, Salesforce employees seem all to be part of a burning quest: Born Cloud, Reborn Social.

Another clue that I have been joining a cloud company, I could finally behave at work just as I had been in my day to day life: everything on the cloud – my music, my videos, my books, my address book, my email, my calendar, my files from multiple devices, my bank accounts… The ultimate mobility lies in this, just give me a connected device and I can operate within minutes just from everywhere. Computing has truly become a utility, plug and live! Salesforce.com is walking the talk. Good to feel.

As a matter of fact I was totally able to operate with the corporate environment at the end of the very first day, using a Mac at work, my personal iPhone certified and even a request for me to buy an iPad for work. What a difference from any other company I was given to work for before.

I’ve been meeting a lot of people at salesforce since this first day and I can attest there is a true company’s culture by which we all live by. Someone summarized one aspect of it with this quote “Type A people environment where A.H. cannot survive”.

I believe such a company is due to succeed big time because of the people. I’ve been given to compete against very large companies before and I know it: a small gang of passionate and committed individuals with strong beliefs and a quest at heart can make a huge difference.

To be continued…

Facebook Is Not the Whole Game — Other Social Networks for Business


I’ve found this interesting take on different social media tools that are beyond Facebook interesting attempt to help entrepreneurs.

“It may seem that Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter get all the media love when it comes to social networking, but there is a wealth of sites out there to link business people with other like-minded folks. Most appeal to a niche of users, so you’re sure to find one for your particular need. As with all social-networking sites, the value comes from who else participates on the site and how actively. Most of the sites are free, but many charge for premium services (and many make it annoyingly difficult to find out the cost until you sign up!).”

Full article here
http://www.itbusinessedge.com/slideshows/show.aspx?c=79216&utm_source=itbe&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=ABG&nr=ABG

– Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Location:Purdue Ave,Los Angeles,United States

Third generation ERP: user-centric and social


ERP Evolution

Back in the 80’s, ERP software have been created in order to address a key productivity issue in the enterprise. The goal, as it is still the case today, was to reduce transaction costs in automating key business processes from manufacturing through finance and sales organizations.

Transaction Cost

The notion of transaction cost was introduced back in the 30’s by a brilliant British economist by the name of Ronald Coase in his essay The Nature of the Firm in 1937 to explain why the economy is populated by a number of business firms, instead of consisting exclusively of a multitude of independent, self-employed people who contract with one another. It is an even more interesting approach knowing that this research occurred just after the big depression period, to be remembered as we have been going through an impressive downturn just now.

A transaction cost can be defined as a cost incurred in making an economic exchange. For example, most people, when buying or selling a stock, must pay a commission to their broker; that commission is a transaction cost of doing the stock deal.

Or consider the evolution of transacting with your bank. Back a few decades ago, you would have to go to the branch office for any operations like deposit a check, getting cash… This induced for the bank to maintain branch offices and full-time employees managing these interactions. The cost of every transaction with its customers was in the $10 range average. Over time, the banking industry leveraged telephone based interactions, ATMs and of course internet banking to take that transaction cost significantly down, let’s say a few cents. At the same time, customer satisfaction went up as the transaction can take place at any time 24/7, from anywhere and customers are driving the transaction themselves.

ERP Evolution of the 90’s

As the success of ERPs went on and businesses understood the value of automating key business processes with “off-the-shelf” enterprise application software instead of writing one from scratch, their appetite for more automation, more users involved and lower transaction costs, increased.

The advent of the web and its ability to connect totally different IT systems seamlessly over the cloud, with e-mail to start with then web services, offered an opportunity to ERP vendors to expand the ERP scope to other part of the organization such as sales force automation (CRM), supply chain operations (SCM, SRM) and product life cycle management (PLM). It also did pave the way to connect remote users to the ERP via thin clients or ERP client in a browser to be more precise.

This was the second generation ERP, in which a lot of ERP vendors are still in, allowing for users of the extended enterprise (suppliers, resellers, customers…) to participate in key business processes thus lowering even further transaction costs.

3rd Generation ERP

As a result, all of the ERP vendors did a pretty good job to automate all transactional business processes such as order-to-cash, service fulfillment and supply chain execution.

As a matter of fact, employees are now focusing on managing exceptions and pursuing business opportunities which are highly collaborative or information driven activities, devoting minimal time to transactional business processes. This is good for the enterprise and ERPs are thriving on this.

The net result is that the appetite to lower transaction costs is increasing again but this time, to automate more business processes, ERPs must take into account:

Digital natives are to rule the business

Digital Natives or Generation Y, referring to individuals born between the mid 70’s and early 90’s, will outnumber baby boomers in the enterprise in 2010.

96% of them already joined a social network online and they will be the managers of our businesses within the next 10 years. They are all about these new technologies to conduct both their personal life as well as their professional one, which reinforces the need to accommodate them when we think about ERPs and more generally the new generation of enterprise applications.

User centric ERP

As we combine the appetite to lower transaction cost, encompassing collaborative business processes, as well as re-engage with all users of the extended enterprise and accept that individuals are more educated and better equipped at home than in the office when it gets down to information technologies, ERPs need to reinvent itself one more time.

ERPs must be thought from the user out, it must be user-centric and re-engage with all stakeholders in the enterprise or it will become legacy. Modernizing ERPs towards 3rd generation ERPs, as described earlier, is a must to reach new levels of productivity, agility and effectiveness in the extended enterprise.

The recent evolution of our globalized and highly competitive economy, the acceleration of change and the ubiquity of information will allow for no choice but for enterprises to embrace these new trends or disappear.

“Between the dawn of civilization and 2003 there were 5 exabytes of information created, same as in the last 2 days.” — Eric Schmid, Google CEO

Now is a good time to replace legacy business management software, as most companies did that move back 7 to 10 years ago with Y2K, the Euro introduction or US GAAP, IFRS or Sarbane Oxley regulations.

Emerging economies should take advantage of their relative low technology adoption to leap frog this information era revolution and appear as highly competitive businesses. The wired economy we’re living in now is a massive opportunity.

Why Work Could Not Be Social Again ?


I wanted to share this video with you as I like the messages a lot and the way it’s articulated. I’m not in any way related to Jive btw.

Enjoy:

Enterprise 2.0 is going mobile fast



Celebrating more than 4 Billion mobile devices in the world cannot let us stay still in our views of the mobile Internet. It has dramatically changed the consumer behavior but is also making its way in the enterprise. It has many consequences for us marketers, application developers and executives in charge or impacting enterprise information system.

According to a very interesting Morgan Stanley research – The Mobile Internet Report – issued in December 2009, some early signs are attesting of a massive disruption ahead:

  • Material wealth creation / destruction should surpass earlier computing cycles. The mobile Internet cycle, the 5th cycle in 50 years, is just starting.
  • The mobile Internet is ramping faster than desktop Internet did, and we believe more users may connect to the Internet via mobile devices than desktop PCs within 5 years.
  • Five IP-based products / services are growing /converging and providing the underpinnings for dramatic growth in mobile Internet usage – 3G adoption + social networking + video + VoIP + impressive mobile devices

Enterprises in the U.S. are already taking advantage of this revolution to solve business problems and meet goals in reducing time and cost, improving customer experience or including consumers directly in business processes. Information Week states:

“General Motors is looking to a new iPhone application to change how and even where people sell cars. A national chain of rehabilitation facilities sees smartphones combining with cloud computing to improve patient care and employee productivity. A heart hospital is using BlackBerrys for nothing less than real-time alerts of patient distress, including images of bedside monitors. And around Los Angeles County, law enforcement officers are using BlackBerrys for such tasks as taking and searching fingerprints.” in a very interesting recent article.

In the complete research, you’ll find interesting figures about more than 500 businesses such as this one

Get Ready, include mobility in your plans.

How Social Computing enters the enterprise?


As I’ve embarked in an interesting journey about creating a social networking set of tools and community site for my company, I tend to look more closely on how others did it and the dos and don’t on the topic.

Here is an interesting quick summary of the considered two ways social computing are adopted in the enterprise, according to Dion Hinchcliffe: Top-down and bottom-up. No rocket science here, but it’s interesting to see first that both ways are recommended and not exclusive as well as what drives and supports each way.

Here is an “encouraging” note to those of you in a hurry 😉 from Social Computing Journal :

“Based on their findings, the Nielsen Norman Group estimates a timeline of approximately three to five years for most organizations to successfully adopt and integrate social technologies into their intranets. They also suggest that the political and cultural changes needed for its useful and widespread use may take longer”

Have fun! I’ll keep you posted on how it goes for us.

Enterprise 2.0 is coming: 30% of executives see social networking belonging to their business strategy


A recent research from Deloitte – see chart – gives us a clear signal that Enterprise 2.0 is making progress in our 2009 corporate world. As expected, this social transformation is coming from the people getting self-organized rather than from the top, as anticipated in the very good book Here Comes Everybody: The Power of Organizing Without Organizations.

As a matter of fact, 55% executives reveal that their company do not have an official policy for social networks. They’d better have one because it’s easy to damage a company’s reputation on social media as nearly 75% employees agrees.

There is also a risk for employees to expose their profile on social media as it can impact their reputation in their job context in a negative way. We need to address these privacy issues over time, but for now just beware to separate what your “friends” see from what the world can see.

2009 IT Trends: can community based IT services on the cloud help?



As 2009 sets itself to unfold, major IT trends are starting to shape our future.
In a nutshell we should be watching:

It’s going to be tough and only those who can go beyond their fears and control it will be able to seize opportunities in front of us. Yes IT will be impacted, but what is a better time to make the tough decisions you’ve been reluctant to make?
I found it very interesting that in this context the eTask.it initiative, referred to by a friend of mine part of the management team there. In a nutshell, they describe themselves as “the first IT collaborative system” addressing IT staffing via community enabled sourcing.
Cloud Computing can also deliver Service as a Service, kind of funny, or maybe more appropriately Service on the Cloud as an important part of the Cloud Computing trend.
Good luck to them. More than yesterday, lesser than tomorrow, bet on the Web 2.0 for your future.

What are the key forces driving to Enterprise 2.0 transformation?


Tectonic forces displacing enterprise applications boundaries are very diverse, I don’t pretend to be exhaustive here, but I’d like to highlight the ones having in my opinion a significant impact:

  • Ubiquitous good quality (bandwidth) web access – check broadband stats – encouraging employees mobility
  • Web crazy expansion (5.5M new users per week, 1.3B Internet users in Dec 2007) and more specifically mobile web expansion (3.2B mobile devices and among them 1.2B with a modern web browsing user experience) and explosive e-commerce growth – check IDC stats : 50% internet users will buy on line this year – favouring extended enterprise process development
  • Users are educated at home on web based applications, noticeably on web 2.0 applications (Social Networking, Blogs, Wikis, …) and are increasingly accepting the Cloud Computing model relevance by using it (personal e-mail, Instant messaging, social bookmarking, photo & video sharing, e-banking, ….) – preparing for webtop and web 2.0 introduction in the enterprise (check “moving from deskltop to webtop” post)
  • SOA and Mashup emergence as a distributed application architecture
  • Transactional processes automation maturity – very typical of the ERP supported ones – will privilege productivity gains and transaction costs reduction (referring to  Ronald Coase « The law of the firm ») in automating collaborative processes and exception management, paving the way to ERP/Web 2.0 integration

This nice cocktail augmented with a solid number of “ Y Generation ” employees — born between 1982 and 1994 – having grown with the natural use of SMS, instant messaging and social networking on the Web and which will be enterprise leaders in the next ten years – prepares the company with its change towards Enterprise 2.0 (first defined by Andy McAfee) characterized by the use of the Web 2.0 collaborative applications within the enterprise to harness collective intelligence. 


Software on tap: SaaS and ASP are really not the same



I launched MS Word today, it’s 24 years old! Don’t you have enough? Don’t you think time has come for a new software paradigm. Do you like Word? What do you do in e-mail then? This industry has come to a conclusion that software could very well migrate to it’s editor servers. It started with hosting, then ASP, and now SaaS (also called on demand applications) is coming around.
Conventional wisdom has coined it at the same thing but it’s not. But an ASP delivers your monolithic application at distance, that’s all it does. Those who believe ASP and SaaS are the same thing have just missed the Web 2.0 paradigm shift where the web has become an application platform. In fact “application” is not a proper term, where as “application services” better describes what is happening. You probably know Facebook by now. If you don’t go ahead and build your friend community there. As I recently stated, one of the major success factor of facebook lies in its application platform strategy. The beauty of it is that users are defining a unique user interface to THEIR facebook by adding application to their home page. Customization, as we know it, is king. Gone the days when software vendors would define frozen user interfaces e.g. MS Word.
But this new way of combining small applications, or widgets, into a dedicated user customized portal has reached the enterprise. Yes! Enterprise mashups are coming up. Do you know Longjump? You don’t, then just go there for a test drive. It speaks for itself far better than a long post of mine.
This is the destination: mixable enterprise widgets or applets on tap. You pay as you drink it. Software is a service, isn’t it?
Bye bye MS Word and all the monolithic applications, whether on your PC, your servers or with your ASP. Time has come for SaaS to thrive.