Monday, June 30, 2008

Grown Up Digital: The Next Generation in the Enterprise

Don Tapscott wrapped up the conference with some thoughts from his upcoming book: Grown Up Digital: How the Net Generation is Changing the World

The Net Generation Comes of Age.
Don thinks the defining characteristic of the Net Generation is that they have grown up with the internet. This connectivity is part of their culture.  Nobody thinks of the refrigerator as technology. But to our grandparents (or great-grandparents) the refrigerator was technology. Similarly, the Net Generation does not think of the internet as technology. It is more like plumbing or an appliance.

The Net Generation and Technology.
Mobility is a key. They do not use the phone to talk; they use it to text. There is the rise of social networks and hyper-connectivity. Unplugging is now a punishment.

Net Generation Norms.
"The war for talent is over and the talent won."

Technology and the Net-Generation Brain. 
There are critical periods of brain development between 0-3 and 8-18.  These are the ages when your brain gets formed and the synaptic connections develop.  The Net-Generation does lots more multi-tasking. (Don showed a picture of his son in his dorm room with three televisions on and all four boys with laptops open.)  This is a smart generation. College enrollments are trending up. But so is the high school drop-out rate.  Are schools failing?  Performance in school is bifurcated.  About 60% of the Net-Generation are creating content on the web.  Gamers process visual information more rapidly.  He also pointed out how online gaming recreates the business environment. (This reminds of a story in the Harvard Business Review: Leadership’s Online Labs by Byron Reeves, Thomas W. Malone, and Tony O’Driscoll.) 

Education and the Net-Generation.

There will be a new paradigm in learning.  Instead of one-way lectures it will be multi-way and collaborative. Even the course materials are starting to be developed in an open source method.  [Look at MIT Open Course Ware]

Net-Generation and Employment.
The Net-Generation is expecting to move from job to job. When Don graduated, he expected to have that job for life.  It is no longer about recruiting. It is about creating early channels of influence. They expect peer-to-peer influence. They expect more speed in the company. They do not want to wait for change.  They are equating work, collaboration, learning and fun.  Don't just retain; evolve the relationship.

Net Generation Consumers.
Honesty, consideration, accountability and openness are the key demands of N-Gen as a consumer.  They are more influenced by their friends and their social network, more so than general marketing.  The four P's of marketing (Product, Price, Placement and Promotion) are evolving to ABCDE: Anyplace marketplace, Brand, Consumer experiences, Discovery mechanism for price and Engagement.  

Net Generation and Government 2.0
Don believes Net-Generation is much more interested in government and are believers in the state. They will put a big demand on the delivery of government services. (Why does it take 6 weeks to get a passport?)  There is a lot more engagement in civic action. They do not believe in the current model of government.  There are new models of citizen engagement. Look at the Obama campaign. Look at Wikinomics for Obama.  Don is expecting a second wave of democracy characterized by strong representation ans a new culture of public deliberation built on active leadership.  He is not looking at the rule by the mob. He sees more engagement and participation. Leaders are in the position to decide and lead. But they need information and feedback. 

The Net generation is a bigger population than the Baby Boom. They think different and they are putting different demands on business and on government.  Don expects this generation to much more entrepreneurial.  They want to change the world and they want to be their own boss.

I am looking forward to Don's new book when it comes out in the Fall.

(In the interest of full disclosure I did get a copy of Wikinomics signed by Don.)

Legal Implications of Enterprise 2.0

The reason I attended this conference was because of an invitation from Paul Lippe of Legal OnRamp. Paul extended the invitation for me to provide audience input on this session. Paul wanted me to be a rapporteur.

Three Goals of the session:
  • How lawyers can use these techniques
  • How to address legal concerns about Enterprise 2.0
  • Tips on getting platforms up cheaply and quickly
Paul focused on the benefits of a system focused around experts and their expertise.  (Like Legal OnRamp.)  He thinks it is much more in line with what a business would want for a social platform than Facebook.  It really is a knowledge platform not a social platform.  Knowledge is inherently social.

Paul turned to Michael Kelleher to lead a project in developing a set of information on the legal issues associated with enterprise 2.0.  They developed a Web 2.0 and The Law wiki inside Legal OnRamp.  Michael largely put forth that enterprise 2.0 does not introduce new issues. Many of the issues of enterprise 2.0 are the same issues and concerns raised when email first came into the enterprise. 

Ownership of IP
One of the benefits of enterprise 2.0 is in the gathering ideas from a broader scope.  Of course with ideas being thrown around more freely, you need to define the boundaries of ownership around the ideas. 

Privacy is a big issue, largely because of the varying laws in different jurisdictions. The European requirement are stricter than the US requirements. Again, email and e-commerce are already dealing with these issues. 

Respondeat Superior
In what way does the company get implicated by the actions of an employee?  This is nothing new for enterprise 2.0. Companies already need to deal with what happens if an employee gets hurt at the company picnic or what the employee is sending out in email.

Employment Regulation
You need to be clear as to whether participating in these tools is part of their job description and whether they are getting paid for it.  Obviously, you cannot make employees blog and not pay them for their time blogging.

The information in enterprise 2.0 platforms is potentially discoverable, just as any other records system is discoverable.  Email discovery can be very costly, largely because the native systems are so poor at searching for content. One advantage of the enterprise 2.0 tools is the increased findability.

Securities Regulation

Enterprise 2.0 tools, at their core, are communications tools.  Like any other communications tool you need to make sure you comply with securities regulations.

Enterprise 2.0 for Law Firms.
There are many features of enterprise 2.0 that fit very nicely with the work of law firms. But there are still some things to figure out with enterprise 2.0.  Can it work for paid, privileged work? Can it be self-organizing or do you need leaders? Is it sustainable? How do you deal with the formalisms of law?

Eating His Own Dogfood.
What better example for legal wiki than an article on wikis and enterprise 2.0?  Paul and the contributors assembled this information using a wiki in Legal OnRamp.

Growth Through Outside-In Innovation

Larry Huston, formerly of Procter & Gamble and now of 4inno, presented on Growth Through Outside-In Innovation.

Larry defines Outside-In Innovation as combining the internal and external ideas and assets on a level playing field to create top-line growth through innovation.

Larry showed us some of the open source development that lead to the iPhone, the opening of the iPhone for open source software to create new applications and some new open source financing for iPhone tools.

Some of Larry's lessons on Apple and the iPhone:
  • Open innovation increases the speed to market.
  • Going alone was a disaster (anyone remember the Rokr)
  • Competitors are embracing this model
  • Consumers are expecting open platforms
  • world is moving to open source
  • need a strategy to embrace open
The essence of innovation is bringing together what is possible with what is needed.

Larry gave some background on his story at Procter & Gamble through the Connect and Development program. One of the big questions is how you integrate this into the business. Procter & Gamble has technology entrepreneurs who sit with the product managers and CTOs to evaluate ideas, regardless of the source. The company's vision was to combine 1.8 million outside innovators with the 9,000 internal people. The CEO set a goal of 50% of the new products to developed from this program. This was a big cultural change. Larry spent a lot time while at P&G preaching this message.  He also found bringing success stories to his presentation to be a necessary tool.

For more on this see the article in Harvard Business School's Working Knowledge Archive: P&G's New Innovation Model

Certainly this was an interesting session (and Larry is a really sharp guy), but I am not sure how this fits into the practice of law. Lawyers do not create products. Of course there are innovations in the law: developing new approaches to structuring transactions, new causes of action, etc.  Most of the law is already in the public domain. Court filings are relatively easy to find.  The SEC's Edgar database is full of transaction documents. To me it seems the practice of law is already largely built on combing outside and inside experts and assets. I think there is room for tremendous growth for creating legal information in more public online spaces. Legal OnRamp obviously comes to mind as an online community that is trying to accumulate and organically grow legal knowledge.  But I am not sure how this directly leads to top-line growth like the P&G program.

Invigorating Online Communities

I was in the audience for this presentation at the nGenera Enterprise 2.0 Conference. The panel consisted of:
The panel started (appropriately enough) on how to start an online community.  There was a general consensus that you need to start around a topic or an idea. They want to share ideas and relationships with people who have similar thoughts. One panelists thought is was good to plant contributors in the communities to sustain the flow of information and conversation, especially in the early days.

Social communities can provide a lens of information. For example Facebook is way to keep track of loose ties, even though there is a lot of noise.  Important topics will get discussed by multiple people in multiple ways.  (My personal experience was that I initial ignored the Clay Shirky presentation on cognitive surplus at the Web 2.0 Conference. But enough of the people in my online communities kept highlighting the presentation to make me realize I needed to watch it.)

One panelist believes that online communities that grow rapidly are likely to have a rapid demise. All of the panelists thought of their sites as knowledge platform focused on sharing knowledge with the social aspect as a by-product. This is a sharp distinction from Facebook that is focused on social aspect with the sharing of knowledge being merely a by-product (and a very small by-product).  It takes a while to accumulate the content in a community to keep people coming back.  (I see that in any knowledge management project. The blank page is a deterrent to contribution.) As more knowledge accumulates in the system, the more useful the system becomes.

The general consensus was that general social sites are hard to keep sustained.  You need to associate the community with a business purpose and allow the sharing of substantive content.

Prediction Markets

I was in the audience for this presentation at the nGenera Enterprise 2.0 Conference. Going into this presentation I had very little background knowledge on prediction markets.  Hagai Fleiman and Jeff DeChambeau put on a great presentation with lots of audience participation.

The basic premise of prediction markets in an enterprise is that there exists lots of employee insight and knowledge.  Managers should look for ways to tap into that audience to help with business processes and decision-making. 

Prediction markets can be a way to engage employees ("your opinion matters") and engage customers ("your opinion matters").

One distinction is to build the prediction market as a futures trading and not merely as a poll.  By structuring it as futures trading, the market is more organic and responsive. It also allows people to make bigger bets if they feel more confident in their decision. 

The session spent some time on the experience of a retail store chain. They used a prediction market to figure out how many gift cards would be sold during the holiday season and another prediction market to figure out how those gift cards would be spent.  The spending market was used to help decide staffing during the post-holiday period. A representative of the retailer was in the audience. Of course the markets are not 100% accurate. But they are generally more accurate than the individual managers.

One issue was how to get people to participate in the predictions market.  One method is relying on the competitive nature of the enterprise. You can instill a sense of pride on those who accumulate the most "wealth" in the prediction market.  Many seemed to agree that you could not just ignore the information from the information market or people would not bother participating.  Employees want to feel engaged and feel that they have the ability to have some say in management of the enterprise.

The session moved onto the use of prediction markets at Google.  More detail on this can be found at the GoogleBlog post: The Flow of Information at the Googleplex.  It was very interesting to see the physical proximity within the Googleplex of the "winners" in the prediction markets. 

nGenera has some great research and information on the use prediction markets within the enterprise.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

nGenera Enterprise 2.0 Conference

The folks at nGenera were nice enough to let me attend their member meeting on Enterprise 2.0 Unleashing the Enterprise as a guest. Thanks to Paul Lippe of Legal OnRamp for extending the invitation. This was a smart group of people. I was subject to a Non-Disclosure Agreement, so my notes are limited but look for the following blog posts on Monday:

Saturday, June 28, 2008

I Freed Myself From Email's Grip

Unfortunately not me, but my pal Luis Suarez. There is a profile of Luis in the New York Times: I Freed Myself From E-Mail’s Grip.  Luis describes how he started using platform communication tools like blogs and wikis instead of email. He managed to reduce his email traffic by 80% and still effectively communicate with his colleagues.
"Think about how to use social networking tools to eliminate spam and to avoid repeatedly answering the same question from many different people. These tools can also save you from an accumulation of online newsletters that never get read, and from those incessant project status reports that clutter many in-boxes."

Friday, June 27, 2008

How to Use Your Computer - Sharepoint Development Example

Mark Miller at has been running with my idea of using separate pages in a Sharepoint area to host a collection of user support documentation: Pages and Sites in SharePoint 2007 (Case Study).

He has turned that into a screen cast using an alternative method of organizing the documents using content types: A Beginner’s Guide to Content Types. The screencast is a great way to show the methods used.

I find the use of content types to be very valuable when use multiple document libraries.

For a single document library like I set up for “Using Your Computer” I find the column and view sorting to work just fine without the content type. If I had the documentation spread across other sites or other libraries, then I would use content types. I find the power of content types to be their ability to reunite information spread across the site collection into one place. For a single document library, it seems to be excessive and adds unneeded complexity.

Defining Knowledge Management

I previously pointed out Ray Sim's collection of 43 Knowledge Management Definitions. If you look at the comments to his post and the pingbacks of others discussing his knowledge management definitions, you can see that he stirred up quite a discussion.

I figured I would add to the discussion by posting our current working definition of Knowledge Management at The Firm:

The purpose of the Knowledge Management Team is to promote and support within the firm:
  • Collaboration, both within and among groups,
  • Efficiency in producing high-quality work quickly, and
  • Putting the firm's experience and expertise at your fingertips.
The Knowledge Management Team does this by:
  1. Creating ways to capture and organize internal information about our work.
  2. Creating ways to find internal experience, prior work product and administrative information.
  3. Communicating the existence of these tools and practices to the firm.
  4. Teaching the firm how to use these tools and practices.
  5. Being the firm’s go-to experts in finding internal experience, prior work product and administrative information
  6. Partnering with the IT Department to bring the view of experienced legal workers to technology selection, implementation and training.
  7. Collaborating with the Practice Areas, which are the firm’s most important knowledge management platforms.
  8. Collaborating with other firm support functions, especially Research & Library Services, Marketing, Training and Financial Reporting, to create efficiencies and profit from common interests.
One of current projects is to better define what fits within our umbrella to help in addressing what projects to take on and how to prioritize them. The first step was to work out what we thought knowledge management is at The Firm and what knowledge management should be at The Firm.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Legal OnRamp - An Opportunity Waiting to Happen

I spent a big chunk of the last two days at a conference in Cambridge on Enterprise 2.0. One of the other attendees was Paul Lippe of Legal OnRamp. Paul just had an article published on Legal about legal online communities: An Opportunity Waiting to Happen.

Paul puts forth ten reasons why an online community is suited for the law:
  1. Law is a social profession
  2. Legal content and expertise are developed and shared socially.
  3. A social platform is the easiest way to go global.
  4. A social platform can address clients’ demand for greater efficiency
  5. A social platform can be used to manage privileged work.
  6. A social platform gets lawyers closer to clients.
  7. Social platforms will change the competitive dynamics of law.
  8. Participating in the broader community is the best way to energize your own community.
  9. An online community could prevent future shock.
  10. Social platforms are not about technology, they are about people.
Paul and I were able to spend lots of time chatting about Web 2.0 and Enterprise 2.0 affecting law firms and the practice of law.

My attendance at the conference was subject to a non-disclosure agreement so I have no posts to share my notes with you yet. (I have submitted them for approval from the conference host.)

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Interwoven Express Search and Worksite 8.3 Update - Back to Wow!!

In my last post (Interwoven Express Search and Worksite 8.3 Update) on Interwoven's new tools I noted quite a few problems. Now, after re-configuring some settings we are getting back on course. Problems 3, 4, 5, and 6 have all been fixed and the searching is great. Those quirky search errors are gone. Express Search even seems to be running faster.

Express Search introduces a Google-like search for our document management system. It moves the search dialog from a screen full of database fields to one simple box. It also brings relevancy to the search results.

Going back to my earlier theory of searching, there are four basic types of searches for documents: fetch, recall, research and precedent. The Interwoven document management system has always done well with the fetch and recall types. Those are the types of searches that you know what you are looking and are the type of searches a document management system was built for. But it had always been fairly poor at the research type where you do not know what you are looking for. The search results do not come back ranked in relevancy so there is limited ability to deal with a long list of results. Also, even though we separated out document collection into several different libraries to speed the search results, the libraries have just continued to grow. The big libraries make the full text searches very slow in all versions prior to 8.3. Express Search brings speed and relevancy ranking. That makes it a great solution for doing a research type search. The sister tool to Express Search is Data Miner. It allows you to group the search results based on the metadata from the document profile. This gets closer to addressing the needs of a precedent search.

We are still testing and banging on the tools, but two problems remain on our list.

First, 8.3 is still configured to return all versions of a document that meet the search criteria and not just the latest version of that document. For key transactional documents, we will go through several versions of the document. We have our 8.2 document management system currently configured to only show the document a single time in the search results. That is problem 1 from my prior post.
This multiple versions problem is still a big problem. Unfortunately, it carries over to Express Search, DataMiner and DeskSite.

Second, it is a challenge to search by the document identification number. If you put the document ID in the Express Search box, without specifyiing the "doc.num:" syntax, it will execute a full text search and you may get the document back in the search results if you have included the document ID in the text of the document. (We generally put it in the footer of the document, but not always.) Even though you can search by document number there is no way to limit the search to a particular library and the search results do not identify the library of the document. The complicating factor is that we have six libraries in the document management and do not make the document ID unique except within a single library. So document number 123456 would be unique within a library but could exist in each of the six libraries. Of course, you could use the bulkier DataMiner which does display the library.

We can probably cope with document ID problem by keeping the old DeskSite interface on the desktop. People would use that interface to search by document ID.

But the multiple versions problem is still an impediment to our moving forward with Express Search and Worksite 8.3. We find it very jarring to the search experience.

I heard rumors that Interwoven is working on a patch to fix the multiple version problem and the library problem for the document ID in Express. In the meantime we will continue testing.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Reed Smith and Recommind

It looks like Tom Baldwin and Lisa Kellar Gianakos are hitching their cart to Recommind as they are kicking off the knowledge management program at Reed Smith: Reed Smith Builds Knowledge Management Solution on Recommind Technology.
"Reed Smith's knowledge management platform needs to accommodate our vast network of lawyers around the globe. We evaluated several solutions and quickly realized that the other products do not provide the usability, relevance and structure needed to effectively access the vast amount of knowledge we generate," said Tom Baldwin, Chief Knowledge Officer, Reed Smith. "Our new knowledge management solution, built on the MindServer platform, brings the right content – in context – to the people who need it, allowing us to focus on what we do best: giving our clients the best service available. Additionally, using Recommind's unique Matters and Expertise locator, Reed Smith's lawyers and staff now have a system that automatically leverages our broad knowledge base of experience across the entire firm by allowing us to instantly find the most experienced lawyer for any type of situation imaginable. With the rapid pace of our firm’s growth, giving our lawyers across the globe an understanding of everyone’s experience was paramount in our decision to purchase the MindServer platform."

Endowment Effect on Knowledge Management

An article in this week's The Economist discusses the endowment effect: It's Mine I tell You. The endowment effect (also known as divestiture aversion):
"is a hypothesis that people value a good or service more once their property right to it has been established. In other words, people place a higher value on objects they own than objects that they do not. In one experiment, people demanded a higher price for a coffee mug that had been given to them but put a lower price on one they did not yet own."
I look at this behavior as to its impact on knowledge management. One of the many challenges in knowledge management is getting people to contribute. You need to build a cultural and enable the tools to get people sharing what they know. There are obvious technology challenges to this sharing. But the soft side of encouraging the sharing has been the bigger problem.

The endowment effect now seems fairly obvious to me. People are less likely to share because they have a sense of ownership over the knowledge. Inside the law firm, this knowledge is usually acquired through the assets of the firm. The attorney probably started with some existing agreement from the document management system, used their secretary and junior attorneys to help craft the knowledge and attended seminars on the firm's dime.

The endowment effect seems to explain why people are less likely to share. One of my approaches to knowledge management is to look for ways to capture the knowledge of the attorney in a way that is more useful to the individual attorney. That the knowledge is being shared is just a by-product. I have seen this approach labeled personal knowledge management and knowledge management 2.0. The most important consumer of an individual's knowledge assets is that individual.

A blog is a classic example. Especially inside the law firm, the blog is a great tool to "catch the butterflies" of knowledge as they pass through your day. It is a quick and easy way to capture interesting articles, thoughts and ideas that may otherwise end up in a stack or file folder. With the blog you can categorize your butterflies and search for them in a way that makes sense to the individual. That others inside the enterprise can find them is merely a by-product. It is an important by-product for knowledge management. But the focus of the tool is on the individual, not the firm.

Monday, June 23, 2008

LexMonitor - Aggregating Legal Blogs

There is a new legal blog aggregator: It was set up by LexBlog, the purveyor of legal blogs. As they describe LexMontor:

LexMonitor is a free daily review of law blogs and journals highlighting prominent legal discussion and the lawyers and other professionals participating in this conversation.

Pulling from nearly 2,000 sources and 5,000 professional authors, LexMonitor will shine a light on the ongoing conversation among thought leaders in the law for the benefit of the legal profession and the public at large.

The great aspect of this site is it's power as a research tool. I ran a search for "Massachusetts Easements" and up come two blog posts on the topic. One was my post: You Can Construct a Sewer Line In Your Private Right of Way. I was testing to see if it would pull up a post from Friday.

This a great tool from Kevin O'Keefe of Real Lawyers Have Blogs and his team.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Connections in Context

I was the moderator of a webinar: Connections in Context – The New Face of CRM sponsored by the Knowledge Management Peer Group of the International Legal Technology Association. The speaker was Oz Benamram the Director of Knowledge Management of Morrison & Foerster. The presentation was a retake of the presentation he gave at the Enterprise Search Summit.

Oz has done some great work on finding documents. So I was enthusiastic to see his take on finding people.

My Notes:

The goal of CRM has been to help you find someone and to deliver information about that someone to help you decide if that someone is the "one." We need to make it easy to find people, whether internal or external, and see our shared experience with this person.

Oz set forth, with all of the related content related to the product. With Facebook, he pointed out the flow of information from Facebook.

There are three keys around people: who, why and what. Who are the People and Contacts. The Why is the client, matter or project. The What are emails and documents. It also important to coordinate those with when and where.

The goal is to make the information findable in a Google-like manner. That is one simple search box that integrates all systems. It also important to filter the results like you do in Amazon or Clusty (powered by Vivisimo).

Oz moved onto a presentation of the contacts module of his AnswerBase system. AnswerBase is powered by Recommind. The tool uses a relationship analysis tool from Contact Networks (in a proof of concept). This tool looks at the email traffic between internal and external people to show the strength of relationship. They also add info from the CRM system, HR databases, document management system, billing system, matter management system and marketing systems.

They had a privacy issue related to harvesting email. They limited it to emails that were put into their email filing system. This allows you to expose the email and alleviated privacy concerns.

Oz moved onto finding contacts in context. This involved some entity extraction. They use West KM to find courts, judges and parties mentioned in the document. (This is very litigation focused.)

Oz moved on to finding internal expertise. They mash together information from the HR system, the documents the attorney has drafted, the information on the attorney's matters and the attorney's time entries.

Universal Edit Button

For those of you using RSS feeds, you have grown used to seeing the orange icon appear whenever you are on a site with a feed. Now there is a universal edit icon if you are on a page that is publicly editable. (If you use the Firefox brower).

"The Universal Editing Button (UEB) will allow a web surfer to more quickly recognize when a site may be edited. It will be a convenience to web surfers who are already inclined to contribute, and an invitation to those who have yet to discover the thrill of building a common resource. As this kind of public editing becomes more commonplace, the button may become regarded as a badge of honor. It may serve as an incentive to encourage companies and site developers to add publicly-editable components to their sites, in order to have the UEB displayed for their sites.

In these ways, we hope that this button catalyzes the acceleration of the editable web, and helps accelerate society's trend toward building valued common resources."

I just downloaded the Firefox extension and it seems to work great. Now I am off to edit.

Thanks to Lily Hill of Digital Advocate for pointing this out (via Twitter: @lilyhill) from Marshall Kilpatrick of Read Write Web: Wiki Providers Come Together to Offer Universal Edit Button.

LinkedIn Redux

In yesterday's post, LinkedIn is Worth $1 Billion, I had a clear mathematical error in computing Bain Capital's interest in LinkedIn.

In the meanwhile, I stumbled across 100+ Smart Ways to Use LinkedIn and Stephen Smith's LinkedIn and Productivity.

Perhaps those sites will give you more value than my math.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

LinkedIn is Worth $1 Billion

The New York Times ran an article on LinkedIn in Yesterday's paper: At Social Site, Only the Businesslike Need Apply. (by Brad Stone)

Most interesting was the value assigned to the company as part of a new capital investment. Bain Capital invested $53 million. Apparently this was approximately 18.9% 5.3% of the company, because they used a $1 billion valuation for the company. LinkedIn also claims that it is already profitable.

Update:Fixed my math calculating the percentage.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Sharepoint Wiki Disaster

I finally got an answer to our major problem with wikis in Sharepoint. It is bad news.

One of the advantages to using a platform approach is the integration of the various pieces in one place, with a unified look and searching. We have been using Sharepoint as the platform for our intranet for many years, starting when Sharepoint was just "Sharepoint" then onto Sharepoint 2003 and as of April 1, Sharepoint 2007.

It was the feature set of Sharepoint 2007 that got me interested in blogging and enterprise 2.0.

We have been experiencing problems with the notification feature for wikis in Sharepoint. When there is a change to a wiki page, it sends out the whole wiki page with no indication of the changes. It is very frustrating to have a whole document, that you have already read, being sent to you with no indication of changes. That is why track changes in Word and document comparison software exists.

The wiki is creating a new version each time it is saved. The changes are there in the wiki to be discovered and presumably to be transmitted. Sending out a notification of the change is core wiki functionality. Isn't it?

I cornered Lawrence Liu at the Enterprise 2.0 Conference to find out what we were doing wrong. I was stunned to find out the problem was not us. It was them. The Sharepoint wiki will not send out the changes. It merely sends out the entire wiki page.

This is a disaster. It removes the communications aspect of the wiki. It makes it hard to see the activity in the wiki. I see something is happening, but I have to go into the wiki, click on the history and go through each version to see the changes.

As I have posted before, it is important to have both the artifact and the flow of knowledge: Knowledge is an Artifact and a Flow. Sharepoint's design of wikis destroys the flow.

Everyone knows that the Sharepoint wikis are basic. I have been willing to live with the simplicity. It makes them easier to understand and easier to show people how to work with them. After all, training is just another barrier to adoption.

Thanks to Lawrence for giving me a straight answer to my question. Even if the answer was terrible. Lawrence Liu can be found on his blog: Lawrence Liu's Report from the Inside
and on Twitter: Twitter/LLiu.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Wrap Up of Enterprise 2.0

My brain is full after spending most of the week at the Enterprise 2.0 Conference. I ran into lots of great ideas and lots of interesting and smart people.

At last year's conference, it was like a light came down from the sky to show me what had been missing from my knowledge management practice. It transformed my approach to knowledge management and my life. I often start my presentations by saying they are about Enterprise 2.0 and Doug 2.0.

This year's conference was not about the transformation, but more about reaping the benefits of that transformation. I was asked to speak on a panel. I put together a panel for un-conference portion. I met people from around the world. I spent time with colleagues.

It was a great four days.

Meeting People:

The highlight of conference was the face-to-face meetings with people I have been communicating with since last year's conference. Web 2.0 is about being form these communities and communicate with people all around the world and with people in your backyard that you are just not able to see on a regular basis. I really enjoyed hanging out with Stephen Collins/Trib of AcidLabs and Luis Suarez of I have been a big fan of those two for a while.

From my backyard, it was great to spend time with Jessica Lipnack, Jeff Stamps, Sharon Wilson, David Hobbie, Anne Stemlar, Andy McAfee, Jack Vinson, Patti Anklam and Dan Keldsen.

It was great to make some new friends: Bill Ives, Lee Bryant of Headshift, Matt Simpson of IBM and Chris McGrath of ThoughtFarmer.

I wish I was able to spend more time with Laura Fitton of Pistachio Consulting, Mark Masterson of CSC and Carl Frappaolo of AIIM.

A special thanks to Maggie Fox of Social Media Group for organizing and paying for dinner on Wednesday. She put on an impressive display of how to eat a lobster.

Keynotes Presentations:

If you have some time, there are videos available for the keynote speakers. These are the ones that I think are most worth watching:

My Session Notes:

I try to live blog from conference so I have my notes in one easy to access place. I hope they give some value to you as well.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Enterprise 2.0 Town Hall

Wrapping up the conference will be the first ever "Enterprise 2.0 Town Hall", a hosted discussion featuring you, the early adopters of the Enterprise 2.0 culture, the tools and the business practices. After a week of visionary talks and thought-provoking discussion we invite you to participate in this interactive session led by members of the Enterprise 2.0 advisory board.

  • Moderator - Steve Wylie, GM, TechWeb
  • Stowe Boyd - Front Man for The/Messengers
  • Larry Cannell - Analyst - Collaboration and Content Strategies for Burton Group
  • Jessica Lipnack - Co-founder and CEO for Netage
  • Susan Scrupski - Chief of Applied Research for
My Notes:

Jessica, as usual, had the audience introduce themselves.

Steve acknowledged that the wireless coverage was horrific. On the facility issue, it was too cold.

Lockheed martin got a big round applause on their session. Here is David Hobbie's coverage from his Caselines blog: Lockheed Martin & Enterprise 2.0.

There was more interest in the Twitter sessions than the enterprise community back channel on Meebo. The audience disliked the Meembo sessions being embedded in the webpages and made it difficult to monitor multiple back channels.

There was a lot of interest in videotaping or recording the sessions for later use.

The audience liked the unconference. They felt it filled in some holes in the conference. The open sessions were not well publicized or coordinated. A technical person wanted a forum to get really technical.

People liked the community site, but thought it was set up too late. There was too little time for people to set up a profile and connect. The community site just went up the week before the conference.

There was a lot of request to have fewer vendor based presentations.

People thought that the labels on the tracks and the grouping of the sessions did not make much sense.

Micro-blogging and Emergent Platforms

The social networking scene is moving fast with ever-changing tools and feature-rich services that provide users with increasing personalization and flexibility. Join provocative blogger, Dennis Howlett in this highly interactive session as he discusses new platform choices such as Twitter and Seesmic. Particular emphasis will be placed on the utility for these platforms and services in the Enterprise environment.

My Notes:

The dominant medium for this is Twitter.

The first question is why should we care?

Laura - A great way to bond weak ties.

Rachel - A version of social networking, but happens much quicker.

Loren - Sees no use for the enterprise. (mostly as a skeptical use of internal company communication)

Chris - Does not see twitter itself as the enterprise solution, but as something analogous.

Loren thinks that Twitter is just taking away productive time. Its a time waster.

Laura sees it as a quick and easy way to ping for experts.

Rachel sees that building relationships is important. Twitter is just another communications tool. Serendipity flows through the network.

Laura thinks twitter is no worse than reply all.

From the audience, are the concerns about twitter any different than concerns about IM.

Twitter is not about getting accountability in the messaging. It is a different tool.

Luis ( thinks Twitter is a killer app for people who travel.

An audience member brought up the scenario of setting out a twitter for something that needs a quick response. The next step is to elevate. May be the wrong tool. Try the phone.

(There are lots of ways to waste time. Even if Twitter is time waster, at least you are wasting your time building your network. Instead of finding mines. Or finding the tiles of Mah jong.)

Loren thinks video and audio deliveries may be more useful than the 140 characters of Twitter. Of course one of the limitations on audio and video is the limited mobile bandwidth in the U.S. (It is also harder find. Google has not figured out how to index the content of audio and video files.)

"Twitter is not going to change the enterprise." Loren thinks it is just more layers of people not saying anything.

Establishing, building and strengthening relationships is key to the success of the enterprise. Can Twitter help?

Loren: The blog is more important than the micro-blog.

There are still no vendors for Twitter inside the firewall. They have no plans for a white label product for the enterprise. Some of the platforms are working on something.

During the presentation, Laura was displaying her Twitter flow on the screen using Summize. She also managed to crash Andy McAfee's blog by tweeting several links to his posts.

Best Practices for Securing Enterprise Search

Overview: Although this session provides technical details it also offers a glimpse at the issues behind enterprise search for those less familiar with the subject. The challenge is to provide easy access to data and content employees need while still protecting sensitive information. Join us as we share best practices for delivering secure yet comprehensive results for leading search engines.
  • Speaker - Mark Bennett, Vice President, New Idea Engineering, Inc.
  • Speaker - Miles Kehoe, CEO, New Idea Engineering, Inc.
My Notes:

One of the common themes during the conference was the need to find the stuff you need. Of course the flip side is to make sure people do not find the stuff they should not be able to find.

You’ll be amazed what you can find on your own company’s network. Try searching for:
  • confidential
  • highly confidential
  • salaries
  • performance review
  • Obscenities
  • Racial and gender slurs
(The session had a little bit of a scare tactic. There are issues with exposing content inside the enterprise. Lots of companies have gotten complacent with security by obscurity. "I can't even find my own stuff inside the enterprise, how can someone else find my stuff?")

The Good: single sign on, LDAP directories to make security management easier

The Bad: Spidering for content means that the spider has to be a super-user that can see everything.

The Ugly: There are lots of whole in search technologies.

They focused on what is the right level of security. The macro level? The document level? The field level?

Early binding versus Late Binding.

With early binding the security is applied as the information comes into the system. Late binding applies the security after the search is made. FAST was doing some hybrid binding. Late binding is not as good. The security verification happens after the documents are retrieved.

Early Binding: IndexTime
1. I have document “”, what are the group IDs for it?

Early Binding: SearchTime
1. I have Session ID “14729834416”, which User is that for?
2. I have User “Jones”, which groups is he in?
3. Transform the list of Group IDs into a Native Query Filter

Late Binding:
  • No work needed at Index time
  • Would appear to be a simpler/better design
  • Late Binding: SearchTime
  • I have Session ID “14729834416”, can I access document “”, Yes or No?
  • (repeat for every match)

The problem with early binding is latency. If you change someone's access after the last index, they will have access to documents that they should not have. The hybrid is good to deal with this issue.

Their take on vendors:

FAST Search & Transfer
  • Supports Early and Late binding
  • Can use BOTH together
  • Hybrid approach “Best of both Worlds”
  • Gets along very well with Microsoft Active Directory
  • FAST SAM = Security Access Module
  • Based on Windows technology
  • Can still use your own application level logic if you prefer
Google Appliance
  • Late‐Binding only
  • “spin” is low latency –but actually a compromise...
  • Could heavily load security infrastructure
  • Does use some caching to lighten the load
  • Caching decreases response time = good
  • Caching increases latency (ACL changes)
  • Out of the box is Early Binding only
  • Mitigated by low latency for document changes
  • Provides accurate document counts by user
  • General term is “Record Filters”
  • Or can use “joins” to a fulltext ACL index
  • RRN: Relational Record Navigation
  • Late binding via custom code
Microsoft Sharepoint
  • Late binding
  • Microsoft calls it result trimming
Search Structures

Monolithic search
With a monolithic search, the index pulls everything across company boundaries. End users also run their search in the one same system. The spider has to have a super-logon to crawl all of the systems.

Federated search
Different search engines are in place. The federator queries each of the underlying systems. Th federator passes through the users logon to run the search. Each search system runs its own way and its own way. The big problem is applying relevancy to the results from the federated search. You also have to deal with varying search syntaxes in the various underlying systems.

Deferred Search
For highly secured information, you provide a link to the different silo where you would need to re-run the search in that locked down system.

(They went into even more technical stuff that went way over my head. )

A link to their slidedeck on the Enterprise 2.0 Community Site.

Top 10 Design Guidelines for Integrating Web 2.0 in Enterprise Apps

There are lots of vendors and tools now available to support Enterprise 2.0. But the complexity of enterprise applications, concerns about security, and the expectations of enterprise users (and their managers), dictate that collaborative and social networking tools need to be tailored for the enterprise environment. For example, typical enterprise users are acutely aware of the corporate hierarchy, and the UI should provide cues to inform and encourage them to collaborate with colleagues in a different department. Based on the findings of our own research, we will present ten design principles for integrating Web 2.0 technologies into enterprise applications.
  • Dustin Beltramo, Architect, User Experience, Oracle Corporation
  • Michal Kopec, Interaction Designer, Oracle
My Notes:

Colleagues conducted research activities with a total of 40 end-users and collected their thoughts and opinions about Web 2.0 features.

The typical enterprise 2.0 user:
  • Uses a computer daily
  • Uses the web daily
  • Novice with Web 2.0 features
  • May not have access to popular social networking sites from work
  • Relies heavily on training
  • Motivated by professionalism, not personal interest
Enterprise Context
  • Performance-based evaluation
  • Curiosity and exploration not necessarily rewarded
  • Data security and privacy are emphasized
  • Users fear errors, data loss
  • Complex pages. - Page density is high and pages are often confusing, require training
  • Each user is part of a business process - Maintain the status quo
The Enterprise 2.0 User Mindset
  • Task-oriented - Wants to work efficiently
  • Wants tools that don’t get in the way of their job
  • Hesitant to veer from routine for fear of data loss
  • No motivation for exploration, innovation
  • Performs tasks according to training
  • “I adapt to the system” vs. “The software adapts to me”
The Big “Ah Ha!”
  • Demographics of Web 2.0 user are not generalizable to Enterprise 2.0.
  • UI designs must cater to the unique characteristics and motivations of the enterprise user
The Guidelines:

1. Do No Harm. Minimize disruptions to existing workflow. Make sure you do not mess with time sensitive processes

2. Stay in the Zone. Embed tools in existing workflow, near business object. Put the subscription button near the content. Think about the supermarket checkout.

3. Location, Location, Location - Screen Real Estate is Precious (so is a user's attention span). Use progressive disclosure. Expose things in a secondary layer as they progress down the task.

4. Keep it Relevant. Provide access to relevant content, not just tools. Instead of just linking to relevant information, embed it on the page and expose when needed.

5. Two Sides of the Same Coin. Provide bi-directional navigation between mainline tasks and Web 2.0 spaces. If the space is in another location, make sure you can move back and forth easily. Expose whether there are comments. Do not make the user have to go to the other space to see if there are comments. If you are commenting, you should be able to see the content you are commenting on.

6. Climb the Corporate Ladder. Leverage existing corporate structures. Grouping information around the structure makes sense and associate content with groups. (People are more likely to value content from their team. The speakers may have been saying to reinforce the corporate hierarchy. I do not agree with that. I think associating content with a group is useful metadata, but you need to avoid the balkanization of information along artificial corporate hierarchy.)

7. Good Fences Make Good Neighbors. Encourage the creation and discovery of ad hoc groups. There are things and times that you cannot share information. If you give them a safe place to collaborate with a small group, they can build until they are ready to disclose. Lots of people are not comfortable being fully transparent. Ad hoc is very important so that it easy to create a relevant space.

8. Keep it Simple. People will use tools that are easy to adopt and enhance. (Training is just another barrier to adoption!)

9. Support Voyeurism. Make it easy for users to see what each other is doing, and to reach out and touch each other. Authorship adds value. Make it easy to discover expertise and information about each other. People are sensitive about personal information

10. Look for the Duct Tape. Look at things that are broken or things are not working. Look at abuses of the current system to help see what problems are there.

There was much discussion about user customization and personalization. Users should be able to structure and make the experience more useful for them. But you need to make easy to support and inevitable upgrades not messing with things and creating more duct tape.

There approach was recognizing that small groups with permeable walls. People are afraid of looking like idiots. Being part of a group helps learning. (I find that interactions among peers is more common and more open. Junior people share and talk with each other much more than with senior people. Partners in The Firm share with other partners more widely than with junior attorneys.)

Tags are more likely to be used to find your own stuff, and not the social nature of it. (Of course the value of tagging is to organize my information in a way that make sense to me. One of the most popular tags in Flickr is "me." That is useless to search on. Unless I am searching my subset of pictures. Then "me" is relevant to me.

Oracle is looking to the consumer web because that is where they see the innovation coming from.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Making Wikis Ridiculously Successful: Real Lessons, Real Tips

Overview: Useful lessons that work from companies like Pixar, Dow Jones, Vodafone, and Accenture. Listen to Sun Microsystems' story about their successful and Get 12 tips for making your wiki work. Learn what value these companies created

  • Jeffrey Walker, President of Atlassian
  • Linda Skrocki, Sr. Engineering Program Manager, Sun Microsystems, Inc.
My Notes:

Accenture 123,000 employees with 54,000 wiki users
Deutsche Bank 270,000 employees (80,000 online) with 15,000 wiki users
IBM 387,000 employees with 100,000 wiki users

Vodaphone combines blogs and wikis. CEO blogs on the platform. Customized it to look really nice (visually) The CEO wanted to blog to e employees rather than sending out blast emails. Two weeks ago he resigned. He did it through a video blog with a message to a company.

The finance department wiki for Leapfrog gives new users a tour.

SAP's developers network has 800,000 registered users.

Deutsche Bank. The mascot is Marvin the Paranoid Android (from Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.) Marvin actually has his own presence on the platform, including a CV. The awards are the annual Marvin awards. It is always the 42nd annual Marvin Awards. Since 42 is the answer according to the book

The sun community is a galaxy. is in the middle, with planets revolving around it. Linda's perspective is from the external blogging community. Sun has lots of both internal and external blogs.

Linda's Nodes fro Success

1. Relax and trust your contributors. Give up control. Balance policy, risk tolerance, culture, benefits and trust. Be your self and share as much information about yourself and your job. Obviously do not share proprietary information. Anyone can set up a blog by themselves.

Have guidelines on public discourse. Use a conversational tonne. Just clarified that it is not just about blogging, but also sharing. Sun recently revised their policy to address anonymity, avatars appearance and community moderation. They provide blog themes for the employees. The CEO emphasized that they could pick their own theme.

Of the the over 100,000 blog posts, only 5 post had bad things. The sun bloggers monitor other blogs in the sun galaxy. So there is self-policing. The thought was to allow the more experienced people to post comments and respond to the posts.

2. Seed the site for Success.
  • seed site with content
  • engage power users to pilot
  • pre-launch evangelism
  • user tools, including instructional videos, FAQs getting started, etc.
  • wiki for self support
Their wiki growth, after less than a year, and have had 50,000 edits to 7,000 pages.

3. Guide and Nurture self-sufficiency

Enable user to find answers and collect answers to questions.

What is the difference between a blog and a wiki. Collaboration and retention is more for a wiki. A blog is more of a flow and one person drafting. Blogs are more about discourse and debate.

The session turned to blogs (I thought this was a wiki session). An audience member recommended that you start with a wiki rather than a blog. There is less pressure to keep feeding the blog monster. Someone else recommended twitter before blogging.

How do you rate wikis? Why do you need to. You are not rating documents or other systems. If you have a rating system, then let people rate, set up a competition among employees to be the best.

Jeffrey has new employees create a new space and describe themselves. Make them editors from day one.

He showed an interesting task list as a widget in a wiki.

He showed a wiki with charting and reporting. A database view through a wiki is really powerful.
They encourage non-work use in the wiki. Getting using the wiki for whatever it is that they do.
Some concerns from audience about time wasting. Jeff says it is a management philosophy. If people are going to waste time, they can do it in many ways. They may as well waste it using the company tool and learning its features.

Permissions should be as open as you can. The default is no restrictions.

Duplication can be an issue. As wikis get bigger they need more gardening. As wikis it gets bigger it is harder to find things.

He pitched and Stewart Mader's book, Wikipatterns.

What about wiki gardener as a job description? Should companies have someone dedicated to gardening.

Sun has not incentive program overall. Some groups at sun include blogging as part of the review process.

Sharepoint question. Blogs and wikis are very rudimentary and the functionality blends together. (I just found out a major problem with the Sharepoint wiki. A blog rant will be coming as soon as I settle down from the E 2.0 conference.)

Enterprise 2.0 Reality Check

You have heard the vision of how Enterprise 2.0 is going to transform the way we work, the way we access and share information and the way we communicate and collaborate in the social enterprise. But how is this grand vision playing out in the real world? Led by Harvard Business School's Andrew McAfee (who coined the term), representatives from forward-thinking enterprises across diverse industries will discuss the true state of Enterprise 2.0 - what's working, what's not and what's next.
My Notes:

First question: why has E2.0 not taken over their organizations?

Simon: Some of population just gets it. Less than 10%. Enterprise 2.0 is foreign to the rest. People already have a lot of IT and this is in part just handing them more IT. Treat those who get it as embedded E2.0 consultants

Pete Fields from Wachovia: What is true in the consumer space does not mean that it translates inside the enterprise. You need to overcome the inertia. "In the flow; not above the flow"

Don Burke from the CIA: The tools reflect a fundamental change. Are we becoming more transparent in our lives and our jobs. Perhaps the incentives are not yet in place or understand for implementation. It will be a challenge moving from the early adopters to early majority, need to escape the adoption chasm. Middle management is hardest nut to crack.

Sean Dennehy from the CIA: Within workforce you have a range of people from those who grew up without computers (and are in power and dominate senior management) to the new workers who grew up always being connected.

Ned Lerner from Sony Computer Entertainment: It's okay that everyone is not contributing. You should expect that you will have more readers then contributors. (Bad mouthing lawyers.) Working with lawyers was not a collaborative process. Game developers have to collaborate to do their jobs.

Don Burke from the CIA: middle management is about making the trains run on time. Change is disruptive and makes it harder (in the short term) to make the trains run. The incentives are made based on the trains coming in on time, not necessarily that they are running better.

Pete Fields from Wachovia: They spend lots of money bringing in consultants because people are not telling their bosses and management the truth about the job and the problem with the workplace. These tools open that dialog. (Anne S. has crush on him; Me too.)

Simon: Just F*cking do it.

Pete Fields from Wachovia: Look for big problems. Be Audacious. Find champions. Have upward mentors

Ned Lerner from Sony Computer Entertainment: Find the best minds as champions. It is about people.

Don Burke from the CIA: give up control and your employees will do right. Avoid locked down spaces. Openness is good.

Sean Dennehy from the CIA: Keep it open do not have locked down team sites. Keep it open. Start with me first. You do it and be the example.

Andy: Trust your students. (i.e. trust your employees)

Sean Dennehy from the CIA: Look at your email. How much of that could be better handled in a blog or wiki.

Don Burke from the CIA: Comment on things you read in a blog at a regular meeting

Pete Fields from Wachovia: Getting feedback empowers the enterprise community. You can feedback and information from a broader audience.

Andy: You do not turn over decision-making to the collective intelligence tools and social media. But they are a great way to collect information and let people know that they had their say in the decision-making process. (It is even great to let people know that there is a decision-making process happening.)

Real Enterprise 2.0 @ Sony Computer Entertainment's World Wide Studios

This session offers a compelling review of the actual enterprise 2.0 systems used at Sony Computer Entertainment's World Wide Studios (SCE-WWS). The speaker will demonstrate SHIP, their collaboration portal at SCE-WWS and discuss the company's Enterprise 2.0 architecture. This informative talk explains the requirements for a real-world, large enterprise that drove their Enterprise 2.0 strategy, and discusses the history of the project and how the company has been organized around it. The speaker will focus on what criteria drove vendor selection and what the company did to make it work after selection.

Speaker - Ned Lerner, Director of Tools and Technology, Sony Computer Entertainment

My Notes:

Ned supports the game developers for Playstation.

After a length technical delay trying to get his speaker notes to work. Ned claims that this will be be a meat and potatoes presentation (as opposed to the uncooked rice from Oracle).

He went into screen shots.

Wikis are default game development documentation

Why did the build the platform? They needed a directory, a forum, a tracker, they need search. The document and email paradigm does not work. The tools need to be fully custom and lightly customized.

Enterprise security rules are a difficult obstacles. Projects vary from open to very secret.

Data ownership the require systems to have information in xml. They want to own their information and do what they want with it. He is frustrated with vendors who have closed APIs and proprietary ways of pushing out their information. They need to pull and push information across the information silos.

They do want a common visual style with a single sign-on and a single search interface.

Enterprise 2.0 In Action: Pfizer

This session will cover what Pfizer is doing with Enterprise 2.0 technologies. In particular we shall focus on the story of how this came about inside Pfizer and the eventual management buy in, incorporating the role played by our internal Discussion Group about the World Wide Web (DIGWWW) blog and the now famous "Meet Charlie" slide deck.

- Simon Revell, Manager of Enterprise 2.0 Technology Development, Pfizer Ltd

My Notes:

Simon started off with "eat your own dogfood." So his group started up their own portal. They used edgy graphics because they thought they were being cutting edge. They were looking toward ways to inspire new approaches to collaboration within the company. They wanted to influence the technology direction of the company.

Anyone can contribute. Those contributors can then be targeted as evangelists and you can find the believers in the organization.

First steps:
  • Lots of nervousness "who gave you permission to do this"
  • they used repeated reminders and urging to post
Pfizerpedia was started by some researchers at a different branch. Simon latched onto it. They were not concerned about the proliferation of different wiki platforms.

He went to the "Meet Charlie" slide presentation from Scott Gavin.

And did his own derivation: "Meet Jessica"

He found blogs to have a barrier to adoption peoples' perception of blogs is negative. So Simon rarely used the term.

Pfizerpedia looks like it is made on Mediawiki and re-skinned. They have 10,000+ articles.

Regulatory affairs division started using the platform. They use it to capture best practices. They want ideas fast and reactions fast. In Pfizerpedia, within 2 weeks they doubled the number of people that were providing reactions and feedback.

They have a pilot tagging platform open source and a second with Connectbeam.

Realizing Business Value through Social Networking within Wachovia

What is one of the biggest challenges faced by organizations that elect to deploy new or emergent capabilities? Justifying, with clarity and confidence, the expected benefits. Wachovia has rolled out an enterprise platform for social networking, including blogs, wikis and employee profiles. In this session, Pete Fields, eBusiness Director, speaks to the critical business objectives that these capabilities are expected to help accomplish.

Speaker - Pete Fields, Senior Vice President, eCommerce Division, Wachovia

My Notes:

Wachovia just rolled out a big Sharepoint deployment with extensive use of My Sites.

They treated it as one comprehensive integrated framework so employees can have collaborative and networking capabilities. the idea is to put the employee at the center of the information.

Pete came up with a list of business objectives and rationale for the deployment he bounced these around employees and other management

1. work more effectively across time and distance. As they expanded from Charlotte, the different time zones became apparent. They were look for better asynchronous communication. the group management were willing to transfer part of their travel budget to fund the initiative.

2. Better connect and engage employees. Company software teams and bowling teams were great. As companies grow it is harder to physically pull people to together. Virtual relationship can be just as robust and effective. Relationship are made by sharing information. You can do that across the network as you can face to face. He found that some of the HR people got behind it. IT did not get it as much.

3. Mitigate the impact of a maturing workforce. They are concerned about the loss of knowledge assets that are soon coming form the retiring of boomers. (Of course you can look at the increased mobility of the workforce. The 50s notion of joining a company and staying there for you entire work-life is gone. People are jumping from company to company at a much more rapid pace. You want them to leave some of that learning and knowledge behind.)

4. Engage the Gen Y worker. They are workers who are looking to better engaged with their company. They notice that they come in ready to engage in work and learn. That engagement drops dramatically when they are confronted with a hierarchical structure with silos of information. We should focus on the ability to remove friction in the workplace for finding what they need to do their job.

(Wachovia or least Pete gets the problems and sees the opportunity of the 2.0 movement.)

Sharepoint was pushed out to 100 workers in December up to 60,000 employees now. When pushed to retail banking and got many comments from workers at retail branches. He saw a lot of enthusiasm in the workforce and a lot of energy from these front-line employees.

(It sounds like Wachovia really gets it. Time to buy some stock in Wachovia.)

Other benefits:
  • Position Wachovia as innovative and forward thinking
  • Improve general employee engagement
  • Reduce travel engagements
  • Provide world class tools to compete in business
  • Support key corporate initiatives
He sees the shift in focus from personal productivity to team productivity.

He was very open and honest with his presentation. So much better than the buzzword presentation from Oracle.