Monday, March 16, 2009

I feel like blogging! Social Networks anyone?

Question is what to write about today? I've been checking out other CTO/CIO blogs such as CTOvision and Paul's NJVC Blog. Plenty of good articles on these blogs.

Today I feel like blogging on the values of Social Networking. I heard once (at work), what's next FaceBook for the boss? Well, Hell yeah!!! So I've been thinking what value would social networking bring to my job.

Well if I were in the big seat (the CIO), this would be a good way for me to be "in the know" about my organization. The CIO doesn't have the time to hang with the troops (even though I know he wants to). I feel that information gets distorted as it is passed up --I am not saying this is intentional, but it happens. Social Networking can help, blogs can help share the information in its raw and direct form versus getting information to the boss 3rd and 4th hand.

Corporate Social Networks will be the "go to" place to find the status of a project or what went wrong or right with a project. This information can be searched on via a tagged subject and the information will be provided to the boss. This will reduce email traffic and email resources! Big $$$$$ can be saved!

Furthermore Corporate Social Networking can be an information sharing tool between divisions within an organization. Imagine publishing an online new employee guide. In this guide you can provide information about your division such as org charts, lines of responsibilities etc. It can contain lists of projects and their dependents. How about a welcome to the company/employee guide with restaurants listings, dry cleaners, drug stores, day care, parking and etc. Imagine being able to provide information provided by Yelp or Zagat to describe these places?

Now why is a new employee guide important? Keeps morale up with new employees, new jobs can be stressful. Reduces OJT (on the job training) time and reduces paper –i.e. you don't need a new employee guidebook. Social Networking will create a common culture throughout the agency or corporation --this fact may improve productivity.

So for my final thought…… Social Networking can be a way to reduce paper (hopefully), reduce unnecessary email traffic/storage, create a common culture, breakdown barriers between divisions/workgroups, and facilitate correct information to the executive management team. The big question is who is going to use it? And will they use it? Imagine spending a million dollars on a party and no body came. So before going out buying a social network product, think about these two questions.