In this second posting on the subject of Enterprise 2.0, we look at whether enterprises should use these technologies, and in what circumstances.

The overriding problem facing all enterprises when it comes to information systems and ICT is the assumption that they are necessary and one should be able to use all the applications and technology available. The truth is rather different: ICT and its associated applications are simply tools that are best suited, in the first degree, to carrying out repetitious, rule-based and essentially transactional activities with a greater degree of accuracy and untiring attention than can be provided by humans. Technology is about achieving orders-of-magnitude improvement in productivity.

The second degree of usage stems from the technology’s ability to support applications which allow the user to manipulate data in small or large tranches. This ability finds its place in spreadsheets, word processing and graphic design programs. These activities are much less transactional and much more knowledge-based than those in the first degree of usage.

For the majority of enterprises, these two degrees of usage form the primary usage and application of ICT and other usages are a distraction and, possibly, a hindrance. For these enterprises, Web 2.0 is not something they can make good use of and, beyond email and an informative (or possibly, an interactive) website, they should not expend scare resources of time or money on considering Enterprise 2.0 technologies. Read the rest of this entry »

In this first blog on the subject of using Web 2.0 tools and applications, I take a look the relationship between Web 2.0 applications and the needs of a networked company.

The other day I was sent a link to a website entitled How to use Twitter for marketing and PR a hot topic if ever there was one that, from its title, sounded like an interesting read. Frankly, it was both more prescient and a great deal more full of insight than one can imagine – it simply said ‘Don’t’. This places it directly at odds with the enthusiasts and supporters of Web 2.0 applications as marketing tools: something they like to call Enterprise 2.0 as though, somehow, this made it different. But Web 2.0 applications are much much more than communication tools for marketing. Read the rest of this entry »

In this final blog on ‘customerization’, we take a look at the third major industry that has opted for this approach – the airlines

On a recent trip to South Africa, I had a very ‘customerized’ travelling experience. Instead of going to a travel agent, I surfed the web and found a site that provided an overview of all the airlines, their routing, and the schedules. This is, of course, what a travel agent would have done for me. Having selected a specific airline, British Airways in this case for ease of connections and the directness of the routing (only three flights in each direction), I surfed to their website to compare prices – again, a service previously provided by the travel agent. I then booked my tickets on-line, paid on-line and was sent an email that contained my electronic ‘eTicket’.

I then rang the travel agent and asked for their best price for the same route and found that it was exactly the same – I had, therefore, done all the work and received no financial benefit whatsoever. The airline, on the other hand, had received a benefit in that they did not now have to pay a commission to the travel agent. Read the rest of this entry »