Social technology offers considerable promise, but CIOs and business units are struggling to figure out how to use it effectively. A key reason is that most social media outside the enterprise is just pure communication. Making the same use of these tools inside the enterprise only imposes more channels on already overwhelmed staff. What’s needed are alternatives woven into the existing IT fabric that help users sift through information and that augment existing business processes, making it possible to alleviate rather than add to communications overload.
Some popular social enterprise tools do meld communication and context for better collaboration, which is where the focus should be. But too many enterprises still assume that social tools can only mimic consumer use. That assumption is why it is hard for the CIO to make a strong case for enterprise adoption of social technologies, and why an evolutionary approach is warranted.
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