Adopting enterprise social media begins with training
In addition to adopting cloud computing and mobile devices in the workplace, the consumerization of IT is also pressuring organizations to embrace social media. While many people understand how to use these services in their personal lives, few are sure how to leverage the tools for business tasks.
A study of more than 1,100 business and IT professionals by IBM revealed that roughly 46 percent of companies increased investments in social solutions in 2012. Unfortunately, only 22 percent of respondents said they are prepared to incorporate the tools into daily corporate operations.
"Businesses are struggling to make sense of the vast amount of data generated from social networks," said Kevin Custis of IBM. "To transform a vision into a reality, executive leadership must guide middle management on the value of being a social business and build company-wide support for the use of social practices across organizational functions."
Decision-makers need to deploy IT training exercises within the workplace to ensure employees are able to effectively use social tools without jeopardizing security, IBM noted. Additionally, companies need to develop some basic groundwork that makes it easier to use social solutions and enables individuals to recognize the potential benefits associated with doing so.
A separate report by research firm Ovum also highlighted the growing importance of embracing social networking in the enterprise, as doing so will provide early adopters with a competitive advantage over rival firms and the ability to leverage innovative IT services that are not used anywhere else in the business landscape.
As the consumerization of IT continues to disrupt the private sector, it will become increasingly important for decision-makers to adopt social media in the workplace, as using the tools can boost operations and customer satisfaction.