Archive for August, 2012

This blog is concerned with the potential legal risks an organization can encounter when deploying an enterprise 2.0 structure into their business. Although these enterprise 2.0 systems are very useful and beneficial to organizations, there can be downfalls if the organization doesn’t introduce a structured policy to control these social media and web 2.0 services. As discussed in my previous blog, web services in a business can be very beneficial to increase productivity and efficiency, knowledge sharing, reputation and staff engagement but without a proper structure to control and manage these services, the company is at risk of negative exploitation.

Because of the openness and freedom of social media, it is hard to see how it can fit into a professional organization and many may ask that question. But web 2.0 has allowed organizations to move away from strict structure to a more free working environment where employees can share valuable information. There is substantial legal risk as you can imagine and without a proper policy in place a company can be staring down the barrel of many legal complications. In reviewing many sources, I found this the most helpful The Risks of Social Media… And How They Can Be Managed,while cross referencing with other sources, the trending 6 risks I believe are most relevant are:

  1. Discriminatory or Derogatory Postings
  2. Threats of Violence
  3. Disclosure of Confidential Information and/or Trade Secrets/False advertising
  4. Defamation
  5. Terms and conditions of social media sites
  6. Ownership

There is a lot of useful information regarding these risks and how they can damage an organization due to misuse or misunderstanding by employees. The risks stated above can be easily done either intentionally or accidently by employees when a seemingly harmless tweet, Facebook post or photo is made that can damage the company’s reputation, or worse aim to damage a competitor’s reputation.

In relevance to how these risks can occur in an organisation, Novell will be used as an example. Novell was used in a case study in my previous blog and I think it is a good example of how enterprise 2.0 is employed successfully into a business.

Novell is a software development company that aims at enhancing workplaces making them more productive through Local Area Connections (LANS). Novell creates framework for businesses to centralize, manage and secure services over a local area network through its software services. It mainly uses wikis in the organisation to enhance productivity and knowledge sharing.

The following is an overview of how Novell can be exploited by misconduct of the above legal risks:

  1. Discriminatory or Derogatory Postings may be made by an employee to purposely hurt other employees or derogate from either the company’s reputation or others or even fellow employees. Through Novells use of wikis, pages with posts may be made that can be unprofessional and potentially damage an employee’s reputation.
  2. Threats of violence, serious or not, may be made and how people choose to read it varies from person to person, although it is social media, if the account is made under the intention of being used in a work place, it is considered unacceptable and can once again damage reputation.
  3. Once information is on the web, it’s out there forever and can be found by anyone. The risk of company information being exposed is of a high risk. Employees could face extreme legal action and sacking if for example a new product is on the way and someone shares confidential information on a social media site, damaging the marketing of a product. An employee may obtain information from the business’ internal wiki taking another person’s works credit, or posting it online either intentionally or by accident.
  4. Using social media, it can be easy to be unprofessional and let your personal interests take control, defamation is the result where the truth is eluded about products or services either internally or externally. While using the company’s social media services, an employee falsely misleading readers or followers about a product and its superiority to others can lead to many legal risks.
  5. As well as the terms and conditions a company may have in its policy on social media for business purposes, of course the services themselves have terms and conditions.  There is substantial risk when companies use social media to advertise products and services, as web services have strict terms and conditions surrounding this are. Novell would have to ensure a policy is in place for its internal wiki, ensuring it maintains professional content and is managed by higher authority.
  6. Finally the ownership of the service accounts. Although an employee uses his or her own information signing up to the web service, they are bound to a company policy. Who has the right to access the social media account? Should the management have access to passwords when an employee leaves? What will happen when an employee leaves, will they take vital information with them and do they own or have rights to it? Although content is posted on the wiki and could be an employee’s work of designs, codes etc, the company may have full rights and access to it.

The business should ensure a social media policy addresses the above risks and many more that are associated with the use of web services for business purposes. Ensuring social media maintains a professional approach I believe is extremely important to make sure the above risks are avoided.

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Enterprise 2.0, as explained in previous blogs is the concept of incorporating web 2.0 applications into a business model. Social networking and other web 2.0 tools are used within a business to increase productivity and target wider marketing and therefore higher profit opportunities.

This blog post is all about the important benefits businesses can embrace when incorporating enterprise 2.0 applications into their respective business operations. These enterprise 2.0 applications can be costly and it is important to identify the benefits and also point out proof from case studies undertaken where success factors have been seen. Some would think to themselves, incorporating social media tools and other web 2.0 services into a business is a distraction and a waste of time, but businesses will benefit from key factors surrounding:

– Productivity and efficiency from employees

– Knowledge through sharing

– Reputation of the business

– Staff engagement

The business wanting to attain an enterprise 2.0 service will have to identify and manage the risks associated with it.

These are the key benefits and the drivers for businesses, as well as the risks, to incorporate enterprise 2.0 services into everyday business applications. To realize the success businesses have achieved from enterprise 2.0 applications, I’ve taken a detailed look at a case study from a business that has realized the benefits.

There are of course risks involved with incorporating enterprise 2.0 systems. Being web 2.0 tools these services can be used in a damaging and non professional way. The risks associated with using enterprise 2.0 applications through misuse or ill-managed in a business include:

– Reliability

– Damaging reputation

– Loss of control through wrongly-controlled security membership

– Loss of productivity through misuse (unprofessional use)

– Resources to manage the wiki, who keeps it up-to-date, growth

– Security, who has access and to what level?

The success story I will be looking at is where Novell has incorporated Wikis into their business infrastructure to improve productivity and knowledge; two of the above benefits outlined.

Novell introduced wikis within their intranet for the purpose of improving team productivity and also across the entire enterprise. The case study used here: http://billives.typepad.com/portals_and_km/2006/06/making_wikis_wo.html describes how Novell has used wikis on both a team level for engineers as well as across the entire business effectively to improve on the above outlined areas, in particular productivity and efficiency and knowledge. Two of the focus areas of this case study, and part of the key success factors in successful enterprise 2.0 services are knowledge, and Productivity and efficiency.

Novell has realized these two benefits through its use of wikis. At a team level, the business is using the wikis and is achieving higher productivity and knowledge levels through software development. This is due to the openness of wiki pages in which teams on small and large scales can contribute pieces of vital information, documentation, suggestions and historical details about projects and development. The wiki allows knowledge sharing with team members posting progress on the wiki where other  members of the team or company are able to keep track of updates and documentation, bug fixes, etc. This also ensures no overlap in work is being done as oppose to relying on conversations, emails, memos etc. It is easy to see here that collaborating with a team has become far more effective.  Having a project and all of the information associated with it centralised in one place, the wiki, makes for far better efficiency and performance.

On a larger scale across an entire enterprise, the wiki is available for everyone in the business to retrieve important information on the company such as changes, social events, meetings or general information. Users can easily follow information from the intranet wiki rather than relying on email or conversation, or watching out for physical notices. No longer are employees having to keep up with notice boards that can go ignored.

(Picture source)

The boring unattractive noticeboard becomes….

(Picture source)

…An attractive, easy to use, specialised wiki page

The benefit of the wiki is that it is available to everyone in an enterprise, it is easy to keep track of information and can be specialised for certain users through the use of hyperlinks to separate pages. Novell is a great example of how using web 2.0 tools has benefitted their business and is seeing a greater return of productivity and increased business awareness through knowledge sharing.

Web 2.0 has opened many doors for both personal and business use to improve productivity and enables users to achieve whatever they desire. This second blog post in enterprise 2.0 is about grasping and enhancing personal productivity using web 2.0 tools.

Web 2.0 and social applications are not just here for fun, they can be a powerful tool for data sharing with the world through any means thinkable. Examples of how a person can be productive through the web are used in wiki articles, twitter, blog posts, photo/video sharing and forums.  The more useful web 2.0 tools a person can use and use effectively, the more self-productive and knowledgeable a person can be, simply through effective manipulation of web 2.0 tools.

The web allows us to be self-productive through many means and I’ve found this theory to apply to me through the use of many web 2.0 tools such as Facebook, SkyDrive, Google Docs, Forums and many more tools. There are two tools in particular that I have recently signed up for and used that I have found very helpful in being self-productive.

SkyDrive:

I first used SkyDrive by default is my new Nokia Lumia windows phone had it built into the operating system, and I must say Microsoft have done a great job of this application.

SkyDrive is a cloud storage service that allows users who have either previously a Hotmail account or now a windows live account to upload and share data. Settings allow you to control the privacy of your files so not everything is public or private.

As far as self-productivity is concerned, this SkyDrive cloud service is a great application, no longer is there a need for a USB stick anymore. With 25GB of online storage for free, I can upload all photos and videos easily, especially because every photo taken with my phone is automatically uploaded. In a backup sense this service is very useful as all assignment files, resumes and any kind of documents can be uploaded and stored.

Because of my Windows phone, I have found this service very productive in a way that I can launch my SkyDrive application and open an MS word document, power point presentation, excel spreadsheet or any file and view it straight from my windows phone and even edit the documents then save it again to SkyDrive. SkyDrive has been a very self-productive and fulfilling service for my everyday life, allowing me to have Microsoft apps, photos, and backup storage retrievable anywhere at any time.

Twitter:

Twitter for those who don’t use it, is a social networking website designed for users to post and read text size ‘’tweets’’. These tweets can be read by followers or those using a hashtag. I am only very new to Twitter as a part of my university subject it is very handy to use.

Twitter is a very handy self-productive tool as it is a very useful source of information. Not just used to social use or ranting it can be used productively to actively find latest news of what just happened in the world. One thing I will find very useful from Twitter is the people or organizations I’m following, these days many companies and organizations use Twitter to post updates about product software, updates and soon to be released products which is very useful. You can even use it to post reminders and notes.

A very useful website that has helped me realize Twitters full potential, as I am new to it, is here: http://lifehacker.com/5788266/top-10-uses-for-twitter-that-arent-self+indulgent

Welcome to my first blog post!

What makes a successful blog post? Successful blogging and creating a strong community presence requires strategies, motivation and helpful sources of information. Whilst blogging can be personal, it requires a balance between both personal views and professional, factual written content. A balance between the two will enable the writer to create a structured and readable post the reader will find helpful and interesting.  Creating a strong web presence requires creating good content and earning reputation, allowing and monitoring feedback and using it to your advantage to further strengthen your presence.

Making a balance and creating a successful blog requires a strategy to engage an audience and keep readers coming back. A helpful strategy is to enable commenting to allow the readers to provide helpful feedback. This feedback needs to be taken on board to improve future writings and allow an insight into other’s opinions and views on the topic of discussion. Using commenting as a collaborative tool can provide more sources of information and brain sharing. Although I have not previously used Twitter, in this unit of study I will be using Twitter to create an online presence and provide a useful way for my peers to view blog posts and receive updates as well as use Twitter as a source for finding other helpful blog posts.

My blog’s purpose is to create helpful insights into the study of enterprise 2.0. It will contain weekly writings about participating in the online community using web 2.0 and how enterprise systems are using web 2.0 to excel in productivity. Throughout this time in studying enterprise 2.0, I hope to achieve a level of community presence, at the least of fellow classmates participating in the enterprise 2.0 unit and also beyond. Web 2.0 tools will be required to achieve this, such as my online blog and twitter. In creating this blog, I hope to write helpful content to the online community with regards to enterprise 2.0 applications that isn’t just confined to the class of enterprise 2.0.

(http://hinchcliffe.org/img/e20drivers.png)

Enterprise 2.0: Business Process meets IT – A summary of the key drivers in the development of business enterprise 2.0

In future writings my focus will be as mentioned, on enterprise 2.0 and how businesses are incorporating web 2.0 tools into their business strategies to branch out to a much wider community and get their business name out there.  IT and business process management come together to form a model to help the successful growth of a business through the use of online tools and web 2.0.

For the wider community unconfined to the unit of enterprise 2.0, this is a unit of study at QUT.