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Social Business, Social Enterprise News, Analysis

How a Mobile Social Network Connected a Start-Up's Employees

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Do enterprise social networks (ESNs) have the ability to influence or change company culture or identity? They do, although the experience will vary dramatically from organization to organization, and may be quite subtle or slow.

What's New in Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2015

Last month, Microsoft promised the quick release of Dynamics CRM 2015 for cloud and on-premises. Sure enough, it made good on its promise Dec. 1 with the release of both Dynamics GP 2015 and an update to its enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution, Dynamics AX 2012 R3.

For digital marketers. the focus of this announcement will be the CRM release — which brings the Cortana voice-command technology to the CRM software for the first time.

Does Enterprise Communication Need Yet Another Player?

We need to change the way we communicate and collaborate around work. Email is dead. Ditto for never-ending meetings and conference calls that force you to be in a particular place and at a particular time for way too long.

The future of work is mobile, social, open, collaborative and agile. How many times have we heard that said? And how many products claim that they can deliver on that?

Where Enterprise Mobile Fits in the Digital Workplace

“Let’s just make the intranet accessible on mobile devices. It looks fine on my smartphone, I just have to zoom in a little.”

Nope. No, no, no. That is not a good enterprise mobile strategy. It misunderstands the role of mobile devices in employees’ work lives and the transformative power of well-designed mobile tools.

For those looking to develop strategic, integrated digital workplaces that deliver high business value, understanding the role of mobile devices is critical.

Did Microsoft Buy Acompli?

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UPDATE: It’s now official. Acompli confirms Microsoft has acquired it. Sources say that it sold for around $200 million, though no one we have approached is willing to go on record with a number. While we’re waiting for Microsoft to spell out its reasoning for making the purchase, it’s safe to assume that it’s yet another step up CEO Satya Nadella’s ladder to a mobile first, cloud first world.

Not just that, but it also gives the enterprise yet another reason to move to and stick with the Office 365 platform, with which Acompli is already integrated. It also offers “amazing” support for email and file services from Apple, Dropbox, Google and Box, the company boasts.

In a blog post, Acompli co-founder and CEO Javier Soltero explains that his team sought to create a mobile e-mail product for enterprises that is “Loved by users and trusted  for IT," which is pretty much what every enterprise collaboration vendor promises to do. But based on our quick look at the solution, it has hit the mark and is destined to keep raising the stakes with Microsoft’s ample resources to fuel its growth.

Current Accompli users should note that, according to Soltero, their “app and accounts will continue to work and the team will continue on our fast pace of improving and adding new functionality every couple of weeks.”

Week in Review: Tales from Facebook's First Intern + Make Coast-to-Coast Collaboration Work

Thanks For Great Content
On this Thanksgiving weekend, we're grateful for an awesome month of content. So enjoy the best of the best from November!

A Facebook Original's Take  
From Zuckerberg's first intern to marketing software CEO, we get the scoop.

Digital Workplace Champions
Check out these seven great digital leadership qualities.

Coast-to-Coast Collaboration
Can East truly meet West in collaboration circles?

Battle of the Emails
This month set the foundation for an email battle between Microsoft and IBM. Don't forget Google's enhancements, either.

SharePoint Choices
Stuck between Azure and Office 365? Try this formula.

15 Ways to Apply Agile Marketing to Content Promotion
An in-depth list of the top-performing strategies.
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This Tech Worker Has the Best Chief Title. Ever.

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Meet Firas Raouf. Chief Something or Other of Xink.

Seriously. That's his title.

And we love it.

The tech executive of the Boston-based email signature management and campaign tool took the title basically to prove this point: He doesn't need one.

Nor does anyone in his company. They need to get stuff done and sell product -- and not worry about who's named what.

"We want to be innovative," Raouf said of the 12-employee company, whose roots date back to 2007. "We want to break away from the norm of the past. We are a virtual company with employees spread over multiple cities and countries. We all wear multiple hats, and we all collaborate to get what needs to get done, done. We wanted our titles to be non-titles. There is no hierarchy."

Thankful for Louis Prima, Customer Honesty, Personalization and More

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Family and health. Are there any more reasons to be thankful this time of year?

Um, yes.

OK, the first two are the most important. But I gotta say, I'm starting to be more and more thankful for other things. The ability to switch from rapper Pitbull's Pandora station to trumpeter Louis Prima's in seconds. The new Taco Bell breakfast menu (no shame here; it's delicious). And the San Francisco Giants giving my beloved Red Sox good players.

Techies are feeling thankful this time of year, too. So are digital marketers, as you'll see in another story published here today. We caught up with some tech managers and CEOs about what's making them thankful this year:

Forget Email, Text and Chat - It's Time to Talk Again

2014-26-November-Call-Me.jpgLotus Notes creator Ray Ozzie thinks it’s time to pick up the phone and have conversations again. There’s nothing wrong with email and texts, he says, but sometimes a simple phone call with a co-worker or a call with a group is the best way of getting something done. Especially because it allows us to really connect via tone of voice and human emotion.

And yes, Ozzie knows that iChat exists and that the conference call has already been invented and is too often loathed by all.

Are Your Processes Customer-Focused?

2014-26-November-Nesting-Doll.jpgWhen business leaders turn their focus toward processes, they often do so with an eye on becoming more efficient in how they handle payroll, manage finances or generate and distribute reports.

While it’s true that these routine tasks need to run smoothly, companies that look at processes solely as a way to improve the quality of a project or improve lead time, are missing a golden opportunity to positively affect the customer experience and spark innovation within their company. So says David Hamme, author of the book "Customer Focused Process Innovation," and managing director of Ephesus Consulting.

Digital Community is Key to Your Brand

2014-25-November-GoPro-User.jpgDigital tools and social networks are making communities stronger and more important than ever for brands.

Whether it's your local burrito shop or GoPro, nurturing a community of active users can accelerate the brand development and spread the word over digital channels. Now, this might seem obvious, but is everybody doing it? Businesses that don't focus on building a digital community will have a hard time getting over the hump.

Build Digital Workplaces Fit for the Future

That’s rather a tall order isn’t it? Building a digital workplace fit for a future that is unknown to us -- and possibly even unknowable given the unpredictable and disruptive nature of digital progress.

The solution to this tall order lies in pulling out the enduring principles and themes we see operating in successful digital workplace programs, especially those that are not technology-specific. The nature of the organizations and the scope of the programs themselves may vary, but the nuts and bolts of the mechanism, such as clear strategic alignment, user-centered design, strong governance and rigorous measurement, are common to them all.

3 Year-End Planning Tips for Stressed-Out CEOs

2014-24-November-Stress.jpgAs 2014 comes to a close, many business leaders are feeling the familiar strain of evaluating the past year’s successes, while planning for the year ahead. Did we meet our performance goals? Did we come in at or under budget? How should this year’s results impact our planning and budgeting for the coming year?

Week in Review: Web CMS Trends + Why Facebook Won't Work

Death by PowerPoint
Why some sales training sessions don't make the cut.

What's Trending in Web CMS? 
Seven hot topics from the J. Boye Denmark event.

Open Source vs. Proprietary Collaboration
If so many people like open source, why aren't they adopting?

Facebook Won't Work 
Facebook at Work: why it's going to fail.

Big Investment in Big Data
It may not be the next big thing, but big data's hardly over.

Hush Hush for Gartner
Gartner really doesn't want to lift the veil of secrecy surrounding its Magic Quadrant reports.

Forbes Insights: Customers for Life
Technology strategies for attracting and keeping customers.
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IT Pros Warm Up to Open Source Collaboration Software

IT security professionals like the idea of open-source collaborating and messaging solutions. So where the heck are they?

Respondents in a Ponemon Institute study released this week are generally positive about commercial open source applications, especially because of the assurance of continuity. However, despite those benefits, companies are slow to adopt, Ponemon found. 

Zimbra, a provider of open source collaboration software, sponsored the survey of 723 IT and IT security practitioners in the United States and 675 IT and IT security practitioners in 18 Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA).

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