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Latest Enterprise Collaboration News & Articles

Discussion Point: Is There a Secret Sauce for Employee Engagement?

Thumbnail image for discussion-pointHappy employees = happy customers. Yet we've all seen the numbers from Gallup: 63 percent of workers worldwide are not engaged at work, and a further 24 percent are actively disengaged. Businesses recognize the benefits of engaged employees — for retention, for productivity, for increased customer satisfaction — but struggle with how to create work environments that support this goal and in many cases feel unprepared to meet the demand.

This comes at a time when businesses are under pressure to differentiate themselves through customer service and at a time of increased connectivity, increased information availability, increased challenges in finding organizational information — all of this resulting in "overwhelmed employees."

Something needs to give, but where should companies start? 

Microsoft Sweetens Office 365 Collaboration Options

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Think collaboration and you think Google. Maybe. Or Box or Dropbox. You don’t think Office 365 really, even though its enterprise collaboration abilities have greatly improved in the past two years. However, that could change. Microsoft has just made it a lot easier to collaborate using Outlook Web App (OWA).

It is doing that by making it easier to share files using OneDrive for Business. Specifically, it is targeting email attachments and email threads that can lead to all kinds of unpleasant problems around versioning.

Jim Lundy: Driving Value from Social Business Networks

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It's been years since companies began adding in-house social networks to enhance collaboration among employees. Now it's time to get real business value out of them.

Until recently, many companies have struggled to get their employees to supplement their email and IMs by engaging in conversations with geographically-dispersed coworkers. Even more elusive was finding measurable value in their status updates.

That's about to change, according to Jim Lundy, CEO and lead analyst for Aragon Research, who has spent nearly three decades looking into social business strategies, talent management and related fields. During that time, Lundy spent 12 years at Gartner Research, where he formed and led its collaboration and social software team. 

The Greatest Enterprise Collaboration Tool in the Universe

social business, The Greatest Enterprise Collaboration Tool in the Universe

Finally, some true enterprise collaboration software that works

I've been in B2B technology reporting for the better part of this century. You may be surprised to hear I've seen a few product pitches. 

Lately, the hot software product is the enterprise collaboration tool. Let's communicate. Collaborate. Share files. Share documents. Avoid meetings. 

Let's streamline all forms of communication into one platform and forget about the old days of disparate systems that don't talk to each other — and in turn make humans bad at the same thing.

Atlassian Celebrates Growth, Collaboration Releases #Summit2014

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Atlassian is making some noise in the enterprise collaboration world at its annual conference in San Jose, Calif., this week.

Among the news — the launch of a new native mobile HipChat app for iPhone and iPad that uses iOS 8’s new features. HipChat is the former San Francisco-based private chat service for enterprise collaboration that Atlassian acquired in 2012.

Meanwhile, Atlassian officials reported that the company ended its fiscal year June 30 with revenue of $215 million, up 44 percent over the previous year.

CMSWire Tweet Jam: Work Like a Network #SocBizChat

320x240_cmswire_tweetjam_logo.pngIt sounds good in theory: "work like a network."

But what does this look like in real life? What changes does this style of work require from companies and are companies (and employees) willing to make the changes? Find out in this week's Tweet Jam.

Social Networks Scale, When Will Social Tools?

Social Business, 2014-19-August-Beehive.jpgI’ve observed a curious arc in the discourse around social networks, especially in the past few years since open (or "consumer") web applications like Facebook and Twitter have gained hundreds of millions of users. The discussions about how we live and work in social networks in real life have changed, and in a subversive way. The enormous scale of these tools have led us to consider the world as an unbounded single network, while in fact we operate in many distributed and discontinuous social networks. 

Bloomfire's Collaboration Train Steams On

Bob Zukis has been a busy CEO since taking over Bloomfire in April. He and the enterprise collaboration provider are at it again this week with some updates to the platform in the areas of content creation, discovery, community and mobile.

Zukis has stated his case clearly in talks with CMSWire about the Bloomfire platform: Successful enterprise collaboration drives business results and stands out as more than just another Facebook for the enterprise.

"Most competitors focus primarily on providing static file management or a Facebook-style newsfeed," Zukis said. "Bloomfire enables true team-based collaboration by leveraging multiple types of content — files, videos, web links, questions, announcements — and putting this information in the hands of those who need it when they need it."

Sync and Share Providers Change Their Games

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Take a good look at the leaders in Gartner’s quadrant for Enterprise File Sync and Share (EFSS) and you’ll see some big differentiators. Box, for example, is a purely a public cloud play. Accellion’s kiteworks, at least up until now, has insisted that private cloud or on premise is the best way to go if you want to keep your information secure.

But things change.

This morning Accellion announced content connectors for Google Drive for Work and for Microsoft’s One Drive for Business. “It shouldn’t matter where you store your content, IT can track and manage it from anywhere,” said Paula Skokowski, Accellion’s Chief Marketing Officer.

While we might have seen this as an “about face” or even somewhat sacrilegious a few months ago, Skokowski insists that it has been in the works for some time.  “It’s an important next chapter for us,” she explains. With connectors to Google Drive and OneDrive, kiteworks can provide EFSS capabilities outside of the firewall. “Users need access to content regardless of where it is stored,” she added.

Why Your Doc Management Strategy Isn't Working

There’s no getting away from document management chaos. Even with the development of file sharing technology, cloud computing and agile document management, workers are still drowning in sea of untraceable and hard to track documents.

In fact, according to recent research from document management vendor Docurated, the average sales or marketing professional is spending up to nine hours every week just looking for documents as they wrestle with legacy and contemporary file system architectures that haven’t been overhauled in years.

Facebook Thinks You'll 'Like' Enterprise Collaboration

social business, More Facebook Cloning Coming to Enterprise Collaboration?

Facebook at work. I've never done that. Have you?

But what if Facebooking at work was actually encouraged, maintained by your company itself and used for collaboration?

That could be what's happening in Zuckerberg Land, if you believe the anonymous source who told a reporter last month that the social network's working on a FB@Work platform in its London offices.

Microsoft Pushes Yammer into SMBs

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Microsoft is pushing Yammer … again. The focus now is on small and midsize businesses (SMBs). 

Microsoft underlined its enterprise ambitions for Yammer in November by making it available with all Office 365 enterprise plans. Now it's also added Yammer to Office 365 Midsize Business and Office 365 Education plans.

Blending Social Collaboration and Intranet Publishing

2014-02-July-Bicycle-Blender.jpgThe reports are in again — intranets are not dead — which is always a relief to hear. Part of the rumors of its potential demise stem from the many shapes and forms that intranets can take, which includes the rise of the social intranet over the past five years. Even this term means many things to many people and does not necessarily mean all elements are built on the same platform. On the other hand, some organizations try to build a full intranet out of a social collaboration platform such as Jive, which does not necessarily work very well.

Collaboration in 2025: Separating the Signals from the Noise

2014-23-June-Traffic-Jam.jpgThe Talent 2025 conference that took place a few weeks back gathered an audience of high ranking HR people from a wide range of organizations. I presented to them my vision of collaboration in 2025 (which will be discussed in a later article). Bob Johansen, former president and board member of The Institute for the Future (IFTF, Palo Alto, Calif.) and current distinguished fellow gave the talk prior to mine, speculating what things will be like 10 years from now.

Let's look at what Johansen predicted and what I did, and where they overlapped.

TIBCO's tibbr Integrates with SharePoint, Microsoft Outlook

social business, TIBCO's tibbr Integrates with SharePoint, Microsoft Outlook

In the world of social software integration, officials at TIBCO Software Inc. say it’s a neutral country.

"We’ve always been seen as the Switzerland of technology,” Leandro Perez, director of product marketing at Palo Alto-based TIBCO, told CMSWire.

Why? Because officials at TIBCO are confident their platform integrates with any other.

And their latest integration comes with SharePoint, whose users can leverage TIBCO’s tibbr plug-in social software collaboration platform directly within SharePoint. TIBCO officials also announced integration with Microsoft Outlook software.

“Users of SharePoint use it as a document repository,” said Srini Vennakota, director of product management at TIBCO. “And it’s very important to be able to navigate those documents and be able to share comments and see context behind those documents.”

Are Intranets Dead? Jostle Doesn't Think So

Are intranets becoming obsolete? 

No way, say officials at Jostle, the 20-employee operation that offers what it calls turnkey intranet software in the cloud.

Some industry estimates cite employee intranet engagement at less than 50 percent. Jostle, however, claims some clients report 85 percent of its employees use the Jostle platform regularly.

Why These 6 Enterprise Social Platforms Lead the Way

There are some new kids in town. And some old ones still on top.

Forrester released its first Wave for Enterprise Social Platforms in three years this month. In its second quarter  2014 report, it named IBM, Zimbra and Jive as leaders for the second time, and tossed Salesforce, Microsoft and Tibco in the top for the first time. Zimbra was formerly known as Telligent.

 IBM Connections, Salesforce Chatter and Communities, Microsoft Office 365, Zimbra Communities and Tibco tibbr were cited as leaders in the space.

Gartner had a similar take on leaders of social software.

Oscar Berg: 'Collaboration Pyramid' Improves Enterprise Communication

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Technology can help companies adapt to today's fast-changing landscape, but digital strategist Oscar Berg says firms also must develop a "communication culture" throughout the organization.

Berg, who works with the Avega Group, a consultancy in Malmö, Sweden, discussed the need for greater collaboration during a one-hour CMSWire webinar last week. He explained why businesses should change, how they can change and the technologies that can help them.

Why? Because factors including new consumer behaviors and  rising global competition are making business unpredictable. "This means organizations can't do long, detailed planning. Instead they have to be prepared for change, to quickly adapt to new conditions and situation," he said. "This is quite a challenge."

We Media's Andrew Nachison: Helping Companies Connect, Innovate

Connecting with Bill Sobel

When you read the “about me” section of Andrew Nachison’s personal website, you get a brief glimpse into an incredibly eclectic person. In his own words, he’s a “a thinker, explorer, creator, futurist, catalyst, convener, producer, educator, geek, photographer, musician, artist, husband and dad.” In short, he’s a man of many interests.

He’s played clarinet on stage at Carnegie Hall, studied wildlife, development and environmental policy in Kenya, managed Lawrence.com, among the world's first digital newspapers — a job that earned him a reputation as a pundit in the emerging digital news sphere — and reported for a bevy of highly influential newspapers and magazines.

Right now, Nachison is the CEO of We Media, a digital media company and creative agency, as well as iFOCOS — The Institute for the Connected Society — both of which look to help companies make better use of the many, many connected devices in improved and new ways.

Take that, Cisco: Microsoft is Tops in Enterprise Collaboration

social business, Numbers Proof: Microsoft Beats Cisco in Enterprise Collaboration

Maybe it hasn't reached Red Sox-Tampa Bay Rays level. But Cisco and Microsoft are certainly watching each other in the enterprise collaboration space.

Last month, Cisco told us it was gunning for Microsoft with its Jive integration.

Microsoft then defended its own suite.

Nothing like numbers to clear up the argument — for now, anyway.

Microsoft has finally caught up with Cisco and generated more revenue from its enterprise collaboration infrastructure activities in the first quarter, according to new data from Synergy Research Group.

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