The report is in from Chess Media Group on the state of Enterprise 2.0 Collaboration. What's the verdict? Orgs are still implementing the technology before the strategy and they aren't taking the time to define/track success metrics.

A Bit About the Survey

The majority of the respondents in the survey this report discusses where from the US/Canada (53%) and primary in smaller organizations with under 1000 employees (49%). Primary roles of respondents were Operations/ IT (23%), Sales/Business Development (18%) and Marketing (14%).

When asked what industry they were, Technology ranked number one at 28% with Consulting/Professional Services (25%) and Financial/Insurance Services (9%) close behind. Well, financial services weren't that close, but the report notes that it is interesting that this group ranks third considering "A tenet of the financial/insurance industry is risk management, and instituting an innovative, transparent, and open culture seems counter-intuitive."

Emergent Collaboration

This report brings us another term to consider in ever expanding list of terms to use when we talk about social business: Emergent Collaboration. The term isn't specifically defined in the report, you have to glean it yourself. For those of you that like definitions though, Jacob Morgan, one of the authors of this report, defined in an article he wrote for us earlier this month There is No Such Thing as a Social Business:

Personally, I’ve settled on “emergent collaboration,” but to me it signifies the two key things: “emergent,” which means something new, or something that is becoming visible or noticeable; and “collaboration,” which is really what I think this all about.

What's interesting is that 27% of respondents said that only 10% of their employees were actively engaged in collaboration, but 30% have half their employees engaged on average. What groups are engaged the most? I don't think this will surprise you:


Now keep in mind that the survey was focused on internal collaboration and doesn't deal with collaboration between partners, consumers, clients or suppliers.

It's also interesting to note that the groups most engaged in collaboration differ based on the size of the organization. Really large enterprise have an innovation/product development group that uses collaboration tools the most, whereas a mid-sized organization sees its Marketing/Communications groups use collaboration the most.

Resistance to E2.0 is Futile

In the survey, 30% of respondents said there was no resistance to the implementation of Enterprise 2.0 technologies. For those that did see resistance, it was primarily with managers (21%), although regular users (20%)  and IT (17%) weren't the far behind.

Manager resistance appeared to be about priorities, business objectives and tangible ROI -- all common themes to issues with these types of implementations. For IT, the trouble was with priorities, then security, manpower and complicated deployments. And for users it was resistance to new technologies and just having the time.

The Most Popular Collaboration Tools

Blogs are still ranking as the most popular tools:

The report breaks down the most common uses for each tool, but you'll need to read the report to get that information.

The Sponsors, Owners and Business Drivers

So where does the push for Enterprise 2.0 come from? Primarily it's from both the top and bottom and purpose-driven (Deb Lavoy will love to know that).

 It is also interesting to see a high amount of push that was “Both and accidental” (24%), suggesting that Enterprise 2.0 is being supported by the organization as a whole.

Forty-six percent of implementations were driven by both IT and the Business, but 28% were driven by the business unit alone, clearly indicating that many of the Enterprise 2.0 tools available today do not require IT involvement (for better or for worse -- you be the judge).

Lots and lots of different business drivers behind E2.0 implementations (and you've heard them all before):


Who Needs a Strategy, Not Me

Most of the organizations surveyed did not start with a real strategy, some simply deployed the tools then did the strategy (19%), others played around a bit first (37%) and things just kind of flowed from there, and others did both at the same time (13%) -- not sure how you do that really. Only 19% identified their strategy and then selected the best tool for the job.

Most implementations started with a pilot, some at the department level, some organization wide. 17% went for a full, enterprise wide deployment.

As for how the implementation was structured, there was a mix of both structured (policies, procedures & rules) and unstructured (rules and guideline available, but the community decides how it will operate). The report does suggest that the more rules in place, the less effective the efforts may be.

Let's Get Down to Hard Numbers

The last section of this report discusses financial performance and satisfaction. Thirty-four percent of budgets were focused on implementation, 9% on strategy, 5% on education and training. Another 19% said the budget was distributed equally between the two.

Of those who actually set performance indicators prior to implementation (25%), 48% don't know if they achieved them or not. Sadly, 60% didn't even set them at all. As for financial performance, 31% said they have seen no direct financial benefit (another 42% had no idea) and 26% said "yes, slightly".

But it's not all about the bottom line. When asked if solving a business problem or achieving an objective was as good as showing ROI, 73% said yes. Of course the question is asked that if this is really the case, why is there so much discussion about ROI?

The reason may stem from an earlier observation regarding performance indicators. ROI and value are being clustered together and therefore organizations are having a hard time demonstrating a financial ROI or that a business objective or problem has been met
or solved.

Final Thoughts

The report concludes with saying that there is still much work to be done. Enterprise 2.0 is still a relatively new market and the technology is changing as fast as the strategies and the reasons to deploy it. The point is, there needs to be plan in place or you aren't going to get out if what you really need -- and you won't know what you really need if you don't take time to think about it. And don't forget to outline your success metrics and actually measure for them. They are not all hard ROI related, so make sure you are considering all logical measurements to know if your implementation is actually providing some benefit.

If you like what you read here, there's more to read in the report: The State of Enterprise 2.0 Collaboration.