This blog continues to share ideas and hopes to generate discussion on social business, knowledge management, and emerging technologies. It also increasingly covers my home, New Orleans, my painting, and travels.
The AppGap posts began toward the end of January 2008. Here, I am primarily doing product commentaries with a few other things thrown in. Below are the ones for August. There will be more in September.
has acquired Kenexa in a cash transaction for around $1.3 billion. I know about
a bit about Kenexa as they acquired OutStart, a company that provides learning,
mobile, and social media services. I helped Outstart with their blog for about
a year prior to the Kenexa acquisition in January of this year
This move by IBM enhances its ability to
support clients in adopting social business capabilities by gaining actionable
insights from the enormous streams of information generated from social
networks every day. This is one of the big opportunities that the transparency of
social media provides. IBM has made a number of moves in this direction in the
past (see IBM's Mike
Rhodin on the Convergence of Social Business, Analytics and Commerce: Part One) and this latest
effort is consistent with this direction.
Kenexa provides recruiting and talent
management solutions through both Cloud-based technology and consulting
services. It complements IBM's strategy of bringing relevant data and expertise
into the hands of business leaders within every functional department, from
sales and marketing to product development and human resources. As their
announcement stated as a result of this synergy, “clients will be able to
attract and develop the right skills to build the right teams, for the right
projects, the first time.” IBM sees a big opportunity to apply advanced
social business and analytics capabilities to front line business operations
and I would agree.
The adoption of social business technology is fueling
the growth of big data and generating both the opportunity and the need for
analytics in the enterprise. A recent global IBM study found that 57 percent of
CEOs identified social business as a top priority and more than 73 percent are
making significant investments to draw insights into available data. The
survey also indicated that 70 percent of respondents cited human capital as the
single biggest contributor to sustained economic value. This is consistent with
the rise of intangible assets as a major portion of wealth within corporations.
With the rise of tablet and smart phone use, PCs are losing dominance as the major online device despite the ever increasing availability of wifi for PCs. For example, I am sitting in the San Francisco airport writing this post and still find my Macbook to be a better device for doing online work, especially when it involves typing like this post and having multiple screens open to support the effort.
According to a recent survey from Gartner, several main activities are moving from PCs to media tablets such checking email (81 percent of respondents), reading the news (69 percent), checking the weather forecast (63 percent), social networking (62 percent) and gaming (60 percent). These do make sense as they involve looking at one site and for most they involve doing little more than reading. I see that writing blog posts and composing other documents are not on the list. Also, aside form checking email, I would not put these tasks as major work efforts. Gartner does refer to them as personal activities.
This survey is perhaps more about the shift from paper to tablets than from PCs to tablets as it found that more than 50 percent of media tablet owners prefer to read news, magazines and books on screen, rather than on paper. It also found that, “on average, one in three respondents used their media tablets to read a book, compared with 13 percent for mobile PCs, and 7 percent for mobile phones.” This makes a lot of sense as a tablet is more like a book and is designed to work like a book.
Continuing with the personal use trend, tablets play a more dominant role in the home than mobile phones or PCs, with the highest usage taking place in the living room (87 percent), the bedroom (65 percent) and the kitchen (47 percent), just the places you are likely to read a book or, in the case of the kitchen look at a cookbook. It was interesting that the survey found a trend for “men to purchase their own media tablets and for women to receive them as gifts.”
Well I have not yet gotten to the point of purchasing a tablet yet, despite the growth of use in my friends in colleagues. No one has given a tablet to me as a gift either. That is how I got started with digital photos and digital music. I wonder when the tipping point will occur?
Thios year in May there was a great concerts every Thursday late afternoon, early evening in Armstrong Park in New Orleans. Don Harrison and his Indians were the headliner in the first of the two I attended. Allen Tousaint made a guest appearance. Here are the photos.
I spent three weeks in New Orleans in May and stayed at the B&W Courtyards 2425 Chartres Street in the Marigny (504-324-3396 or 800-585-5731). (see below) The hosts, Rob and Kevin were great. I had a one bedroom apartment in the back with full kitchen so I did a lot of cooking in my place to save costs and also enjoy local food. The place was full of nice antiques and art. I highly recommend it to anyone visiting the city. It also only a few blocks form Frenchmen Street and beyond that the French Quarter.
For food I tried a few new places those I experienced before. Here are some of my experiences. The Bayou Boogaloo Festival in Mid-City on Bayou St. John had great food vendors. It is an annual event and covered is a separate post last weekend as is the food vendors at the Art Mart that is a monthly event and was also covered last weekend.
The New Olreans Cake Cafe and Bakery is across the street from B & W Courtyards. I had anumber of meals there. Below you can see their shrimp and grtis. crab salad, and eggs and grits with boudin suasage.
Mimi’s a Marigny - I went here twice because of the great food and music. They have great Spanish tapas. The first time I had shrimp with creole sauce, calamari with saffron cream sauce, mushroom manchego cheese tart. The second time I had shrimp with creole sauce, calamari with saffron cream sauce, and more. It is located at 2601 Royal Street (504) 872-9868
Luizza’s – Great Italian and Creole food. As their site says, “A Mid-City landmark since 1947, is only minutes from the French Quarter and Central Business District.The aroma is unmistakable as you walk in the door of the neighborhood bar and restaurant. This family operated restaurant is treasured by locals for its recipes of down-home Louisiana, Cajun, authentic Italian and seafood dishes. This is a place where locals of all descriptions, taxi drivers, businessmen on their lunch hour to tourists and conventioners, all come to try some real New Orleans/Italian hospitality.” I had fifed green tomatoes with shrimp roumelaide. It is located at 3636 Bienville Street (504) 482-9120
MiLa for dinner is a very high end place and pricy but good. I had smoked redfish salad, crab salad at the bar. MILa stand for Mississippi Louisiana. MiLa is the culmination of both the marriage of chefs Slade Rushing and Allison Vines-Rushing and their respective home states cuisines-Mississippi and Louisiana. This was my first time there. It is located at 817 Common Street, New Orleans, LA 70112.
Upperline is place I have been several times and is still good. Their duck three ways is great an dno longer on the menu but they did it fo rme anyway. It is located at 1413 Upperline Street. (504) 891-9822.
Bacchanlal is a wine shop where you buy your wine and they have a food vendor providing greta food along with music. I saw the Mark Welky Trio. It is located at 600 Poland Avenue 504-948-9111
Patois - is the best place to eat in the mid to high end. It is located at 6078 Laurel St, on the corner of Laurel and Webster 504 895 9441
Dante’s Kitchen - I had spoon bread, escargot, gulf fish, sweet potatoes, coffee custard. It was all good. The name comes from the street it is located - 736 Dante Street, New Orleans, 70118 at the corner of Dante and River Road, (504) 861-3121
Stanley’s – I had walked by the place many times but because it was on Jackson Square I had assumed it was a tourist place. The food was actually excellent. I had a variation on Eggs Benedict with two poached eggs sitting on top of some boudin sausage from Charlie T’s in the Lafayette area, hollandaise sauce and French bread. It is now on my list of places to trust in the Quarter. We also had fried oysters and onion strings.
Then there was Dong Phuongthe great Vietnamese bakery and restaurant as you can see below. NOLA.com writes: “It's also one of New Orleans' finest purveyors of Vietnamese cuisine. The bakery is crowded at midday with customers snatching up fresh-baked banh mi, the Vietnamese-style French bread; banh mi thit, the sandwiches known locally as Vietnamese po-boys; and an array of exotic sweets -- mung bean bars that taste like Fig Newtons, gummy candies made from steamed yucca -- that will make you squint with wonder. The adjacent restaurant excels at steamy noodle soups.” We had some of each. It is located at 14207 Chef Menteur Highway, 504.254.0296.
In their latest work latest study of US four year accredited undergraduate schools for the first time social media is found to cut costs for Admissions Offices. As a result, schools are planning to increase investments in social media initiatives they feel are more efficient in reaching their target audience. .Admissions Directors report that social media is now more efficient than traditional media and 78% report that these tools have changed the way they recruit. The most useful tools for recruiting undergraduates include Facebook (94%), YouTube (81%), Twitter (69%) and Downloadable Mobil Apps (51%). Mobile apps are a favorite of top MBA programs with 82% citing them as an effective recruiting tool.
Only 29% of the schools surveyed report having no social media plan in place for their Admission Office and an additional 15% report not knowing if there is a social media plan in place. I guess these are the clueless ones. Here is another concern as less than half of colleges have s social media policy and19% of the undergraduate admissions officer report they did not know if any such policy existed at their school. More in the clueless group.
Another concerning trend is that monitoring the schools name and relevant online conversation has declined over the past few years. In 2009-2010, 73% reported monitoring their brand. In 2010-2011, that number dropped to 68% and now is reported to be 47%.
Despite the lack of plans and policies by some schools, 92% of undergraduate admissions officers agree that social media is worth the investment and 86% plan to increase their investment in social media next year. They are also reducing costs for traditional media are attributed to use of social media. Schools report 33% less spent on printing, 24% less spent on newspaper ads and 17% less spent on radio and TV ads. This follows the general spending reductions in traditional media that is seriously impacting these industries.
Thanks to Nora and her team for another useful report.
John said that customers continue to want to have real-time dashboards that collect operational intelligence from multiple sources and bring it together for increased efficiency and effectiveness. Data center monitoring is one area where they are seeing real growth in their offering. You can see a sample data center monitoring screen below.
Data centers have become more core to organizations and maximizing efficiency is key to getting the investment returns that the shift to the cloud offers. In the past, data center mangers never had a holistic view of what was happening as the data was often all over the place. Here is another data center sample.
Another growth area is remote monitoring. This can be monitoring turbines, large engines, smart grids, data center storage, and even Twitter feeds. They used the term; M2M or machine-to-machine monitoring. The goal in their efforts is to provide more self-service for business users. JackBe Presto allows a tech savvy business person to create and set up dashboards that aggregate data from multiple sources. The goal is to allow the business side to do 80% of the work and leave the 20% of real tough stuff to the IT guys. Below is another ruse case – cyber risk threat monitoring.
They see their offering as part of the third wave of BI. The first was traditional data warehouses followed by a focus on data analytics. Now there is growing interest in real-time and big data. I asked John about big data as it is one of the buzz words de jure. He said that customers think of it as going beyond traditional data warehousing to look at the massive amounts of unstructured data. JackBe sees it as another data source they can aggregate. Most big data tools operate in batch mode but soon these sources can be connected to real-time data feeds to see new discoveries. The aim is to add a layer on top of existing tools, applications and information sources to bring the data together in interactive dashboards and deliver it where the user needs it – in SharePoint, portals or mobile devices, not replace these tools. JackBe adds the real-time operational component to existing organizational BI portfolios.
There will be a new release in the Fall with more self-services capabilities, more KPI builders, more attractive dashboard layouts, and increased ability to handle social data. The barriers between operational data and KPIs need to be reduced and that will be part of the next release. They have three big areas of focus: SharePoint, portals, and mobile. I look forward to seeing their next release.
As she reported, the Daily Crowdsource hosted Crowdopolis at USC's Davidson Center on Thursday, July 19. It was a fast-paced, day-long event, that showcased crowdsourcing as a growing force in changing the structure of work. It presented new business models, around creating high impact relationships with customers, widening and accelerating innovation opportunities, and streamlining business processes. I urge you to read her complete coverage but wanted to both bring it to you attention and offer a few comments.
Crowdsourcing offers a number of potentially transformative moves including putting efficiency in innovation, building and enhancing expert communities, allowing for micro-work efforts over widely disperse populations, and basically rethinking the way work is done. Catherine offers great examples for each of these. I wanted to share a story about micro-work efforts over widely disperse populations that I participated in a few years ago.
After hurricane Karina hit my home town of New Orleans many people were out of touch with their family and friends and had no way to know if they survived or where they were. The government had failed to set up a common missing person database. As a result, hundreds of siloed web sites gathered hundreds, and probably thousands, of entries about missing persons or persons who wanted to let others know they’re okay. The problem was the data on these sites had no particular form or structure. So it was almost impossible for people to search or match things up. Plus there were dozens of sites
To address this need a few people in Cambridge MA put a central database together in a few days. It was called the Katrina PeopleFinder Project. They asked for volunteers to help with transferring data from the hundreds of sites to this common one. It was possible for a few people to set this up but they needed a crowd to pull off the data transfer. This was a perfect crowd-sourcing micro-task project and it worked.
The organizers went to the Web and recruited tens of thousands in a few days. I started working on this. There were good instructions and a non-technical person like me could do it. You took data from one of many separate databases and added it into a central one. There were several benefits in addition to a single source to find people. You took databases with different formats and put them into a common format so searches and sorts can work better. Also, many entries have multiple people and we created separate records for each individual.
It was concrete way for people to help remotely as you had time. There was wiki admin front end and you took 50 records at a time. It was a wonderful example of creating micro-work tasks in a crowd-source environment. The work gave also volunteers a closer personal look at the displaced people. It let you see who was looking for who and the status of this search. Some of the individual stories emerged. It is small thing to do but you saw the names of people directly impacted by Katrina and hopefully helped a few people find others or get notified of the status of people close to them.
These same principles are being used for a variety of tasks, For example, as Catherine reported, both Amazon Mechanical Turk and the Finnish start-up Microtask use a process of parsing out mini-pieces of work to a distributed work force. Microtask conducted a joint project with the National Library of Finland to index the library's archives in order to better enable web search of those resources. To help decipher and validate the library's archives, Microtask created an online game, Digitalkoot and with a voluntary workforce that engaged in the game, completed 5.2 million microtasks in the first 9 months of the project. There are many tasks like this one and the Katrina People Finder Project that lend themselves to crowd-sourcing. I can only see it continue to grow and can be a great way to engage people in solving problems remotely at a pace they can manage.
I was foprtunate to attend the 6th annual version of this festival with great food vendors and three stages of wonderful people. Some attendees said it was like what JazzFess used to be. Here are the images.
I have been covering Novell for some time (see for example, Novell Teaming Brings Kempinski Hotels into Enterprise 2.0 and Novell GroupWise 2012 Expands its Collaboration Capabilities). On a recent call I spoke with Tracy Smith, Senior Product Manager, and Julie Jones, Product Marketing Manager about the latest release of Novell Vibe. Tracy explained that Teaming was rebranded as Vibe, aspects of Pulse were added to it and Pulse is no longer a separate product. The Vibe offering is an on-premise version, as 99% of their clients are operating on-premise. Their current strategic direction is to focus on existing Novell customers with GroupWise, Open Enterprise Server and ZENworks and providing increased services to them.
They are offering new releases of Vibe about every six months. Version 3.3 offers integration with Microsoft Office 2007 and 2010 as one of the major enhancements. You can open and save Office documents, including Word, Excel, and PowerPoint, using Vibe as the backend server. This integration provides rich additional functionality to Office users.
A Vibe dashboard can now be added to Office apps that brings in Vibe features such as version tracking and history. You can add notes and easily go back to earlier versions of documents in case the new version has mistakes or goes in directions you do not want. All modifications are versioned. There is also an activity stream, “What’s New,” so that if you are in Vibe, you get updated of any changes to documents that you have access to. These features help people work on documents together since a live comment stream aids discussion and decisions about content; each user can edit a file and be notified when another person's edits are available to preview and merge; and the group can see document history and compare versions.
You can also make use of the metadata within Office. For example, you can see the social profile in Vibe of the document owner or any contributor, as well anyone who provides input on a comment thread. The comment stream is accessible to everyone working on the document or connected to it. You can also lock down a document if you want to prevent further changes.
The latest release of Novell Vibe also includes Vibe Desktop, which enables users to easily access and sync files offline. Users simply download Vibe Desktop and can then connect and sync any folders and files from their Novell Vibe system to their desktop. They can then access these files offline, with any changes automatically syncing between their desktop and Vibe once they are back online. The Vibe Desktop is available for Windows now with a Mac version coming in the next few weeks.
People often adopt social tools at different rates. The flexibility to work in Office with Vibe features or directly in Vibe allows those who want the comfort of familiar tools to stay within them. While Novell Vibe 3.3 is independent, it works with any standard email system. It includes tight integrations with Novell GroupWise 2012, giving users access and interaction across Vibe and GroupWise content from one place, bridging the gap between personal and team productivity to make people more efficient throughout their work day. They have also upgraded their mobile UI and added apps for Android and iPhone to simplify access.
Another feature is the ability to dynamically create groups based on LDAP directories. There are also workflow improvements and they have simplified the template to better work with tablets such as the iPad. Now you can more easily see functions like your calendar and tasks. Novell has added a table of contents to their wiki. The release policy is to not require customers to upgrade with each new release, as all releases within a major version, such as the 3.0 series, are compatible.
I think these are all good moves. Integration is an increasing theme and is certainly necessary to make the enterprise social. The new social tools need to connect to the traditional enterprise and productivity tools such as Office if real work is to be accomplished (see Integrating the Interactions with the Transactions). I look forward to seeing the ongoing evolution of Vibe.
Michael Fauscette, lead author of two IDC reports, is quoted, "We're seeing good strong growth from the major players in this market and that'll continue for quite a while." Customers spent $767.4 million on the products globally in 2011, and will spend almost $4.5 billion in 2016, according to IDC's "Worldwide Enterprise Social Software 2012-2016 Forecast." Because of their potential for sharpening employee communication they're becoming important tools for "decision support" and productivity across most industry verticals, according to Fauscette.
However, there are factors that will work to slow down the momentum. These include: concerns about return-on-investment, security, regulatory compliance and intellectual property protection, as well as the involvement needed from IT departments to deploy and integrate the software. The latter one is a key concern in my opinion.
For social software to really work and provide value, the integration with enterprise apps is critical. Some firms are building in this integration into their products (see ). Others, such as AppFusions, are building connectors to enable these necessary integrations without heavy lifting from IT.
IDC also ranked the top vendors from a revenue perspective in a different study, "Worldwide Enterprise Social Software 2011 Vendor Shares." Tops by far was IBM with $105.4 million, followed by Jive Software ($65.3 million), Communispace ($60 million), Telligent ($42.7 million), and Socialtext ($34.5 million). Rounding out the top 10 were Mzinga, Lithium, Yammer, NewsGator, and VMware. I guess Microsoft was feeling left out so they picked up Yammer. It is also smart of IDC to not count SharePoint as social software.
It will be interesting to see where this market goes but I predict that integration will be a major theme over the coming years.
Similar to weather patterns revealing themselves through clouds, the cyclical and spontaneous waves of tweets reveal themselves though moving theme clusters through Tweather's innovation.
Tweather offers a new way to:
show and consume tweets
see emerging patterns and trends from twitter about any topic
present a real-time and shareable crowd-sourced digest
You can discover and follow what is happening about what matters to you on Twitter without searches, or worries about what vital tweet you might be missing in that moment. They now deploying theme-specific sites, such as their dedicated site to the Olympics 2012 USA team, for universal viewing and sharing. The features on the Olympics site are read only but the user can select the keywords, see the correlated topics, and RT, Like and share the report or the tweets revealed on the query. Below you can see the home page of the Tweather Olympics site.
The themes that are presented are based on emerging content and are not predetermined. They could be a person or sport or other item connected with the topic, Olympics, in this case. If you click on any of the themes, they will present the results connected with theme
Manteo Mitchell is a U.S. sprinter who broke his leg during the semi-final of the 1,600-meter relay — and kept on running anyway. He felt a pop in his left leg halfway into his 400-meter portion of the race, followed by searing pain. But he didn't want to let his teammates or country down, so kept on racing and helped secure Team U.S.A. a place in the final. Below is a series on Tweather screens that tracked the tweets connect to him on the afternoon of Saturday, August 11. Notice the time shifts cross the top of each screen as indicated by the shifting blue time indicator. You can see how the emerging pattern shifts and the value of observing movement over being exposed to the twitter fire-hose, especially about a hot topic.
If you click on any of these sub-themes, you will be taken to the tweets connected with the sub-theme during this time period. An example is displayed after the five screen shots showing the evolution over time.
Below is a sample tweet in the revaled left column for the highlghted word - hope.
I went again to the MFA in Boston to see the Dega Nudes show which was quite inspring, especially the pastels. While i was there I went again to some of my favorite galleries and looked into more paintings to find some paitnins within them. Here are 27 new selections.
Here are some photos from the Potrero Hill neighborhood in San Francisco. It is one of the sunniest areas in the city with great views looking in all directions. It has a street just as curvy as Lombard Street where they have a tricycle race every year.
There has been a lot of discussion about the BYOD movement (Bring Your Own Device) where people are getting their own smart phone and/or tablet. Well, I think the complementary to that may be just as big. This opinion is not based on any research, just a number of conversations I have had recently. Now I am certainly not claiming to be the first to raise the issue of people bypassing IT to use apps from the consumer Web or elsewhere, I am just suggesting a label to help focus the issue and put it parallel to BYOD. I Googled it and did not find anything. So maybe you first heard the term here?
One example is when IT invests in an expensive document sharing system and employees use Google Docs on their own instead. Yammer got some of its early users this way. One problem becomes security but another is the chaos that can result from the uncommon data structures of the different tools. I think IT and even business unit leaders need to be worried here. I could raise more difficulties than BYOD. However, just like BYOD, you cannot really legislated this away. Employees can vote with their digital “feet” if you do not give them the tools they want. They best solution is to involve employees in apps decisions and deployments. This has always been a best practice but it is even more important now.
I covered Awareness a good bit (see Awareness Provides Social Media Command Center). Beginning as a community platform, they have transformed their offering to become a social media command center that allows you to properly manage all of you social media activity through a single source. In their latest initiative, they are now providing the Awareness’ Social Marketing Automation suite. It equips brands to identify, track and rank their existing social customers and new likely prospects from all the major social networks (Twitter, Facebook, YouTube) based on segmentation and prioritization criteria they define.
One of the major aspects is Social Prospecting. This helps brands identify new pipelines of prospects from the social web using their own defined set of social activity criteria (e.g. identifying users who are engaging with competitors’ brands, or those actively discussing specific topics). It is offered as an additional feature via the Awareness Social Marketing Hub.
Another is Social Scoring. This allows brands to analyze their social profiles (prospects and customers) and apply their own segmentation logic to address their specific business goals. By applying weights to the social users’ activities, actions, and demographic information, marketers can generate prioritized, dynamically updated lists of social targets. These lists can be used for engagement in social channels or to augment nurturing activities by synching profiles and scores with CRM systems such as Salesforce.com, and Marketing Automation or Email Marketing platforms such as Marketo, Eloqua, and Silverpop.
A third is Awareness’ Social CRM. It is an automated social profile database that provides a complete picture of social prospects and brand followers and fans. Customers following brands on social channels and new likely prospects harvested from the social web are placed within the Awareness’ Social CRM, with complete social profiles based on available demographic information, interests, and preferences. This social profile data is augmented over time with users’ likes, posts, comments, and shares to create multi-dimensional user profiles. Profile data and interactions across multiple social networks are merged into a single social profile record to offer a consolidated view of each user.
These are very useful capabilities as we awash in an ocean of unstructured data from social media. As they note, with over 30 billion pieces of content shared on Facebook each month, YouTube receiving more than 2 billion viewers per day, and Twitter handling 1.6 billion search queries per month, more than Bing and Yahoo combined, the potential for social marketing automation to accelerate user engagement and sales is profound.
People often talk about Big Data but I also think there is Big Content which is another way to describe the unstructured data or content that we need to make sense of regardless of how much there is. See my post - “Big Data” vs. “Big Content” Complementary Sides of Information Overload). While big data is a challenge for many large organizations, big content is a challenge that all Web users face every day. How do you deal with the fire hose of content coming at you from the Web, especially from the all the user-generated content sites like Twitter or blogs? The Big Data tools do not really address this so l tools like the new Awareness capability are welcome.
Chris began with some general thoughts about Badgeville to set the context. He said that one of the biggest challenges in implementing enterprise social tools is changing old behaviors and I would agree. There are many silos within large enterprises and social tools are increasingly being implemented to break down these silos. But the task remains to get people to actually change the way they work and use these tools. It is too easy to stay within familiar email, for example.
Chris said that social software implementers have recognized the need to map to business processes. This is something I have written about considerably (see Giving Social Media a Good Job). However, Chris said this is not enough. He gave the example of a large consulting company that implemented Yammer to break down silos. As I know from personal experience, cross-group communication is essential in this environment to share best practices. But how do you change 20 years of learned communication behavior?
The firm, working with The Behavior Platform (Badgeville’s core product), created a simple mobile app that allowed people to share the “who, what, and where” about a conversation. People received points for participation, and earned contextually relevant rewards for location and content. Through the Badgeville for Yammer integration, those achievements were then published into the Yammer stream. Managers who saw this offered praise to those who received those achievements and others saw this praise. There is nothing like public praise from management that drives behavior in this environment. Everyone could see that Yammer participation was valued by management, so even the hold-outs jumped in as well. With gamification, the rewards occur on an ongoing basis and are cumulative to encourage ongoing participation. These rewards are not a one-time thing that is soon forgotten. Chris says this is an example of what Badgeville is calling Behavior Lifecycle Management – where gamification plays a critical role. Here is a sample Badgeville screen.
With Badgeville you can also pair rewards with contextual behaviors to drive engagement. For example, sales best practices are often hard to get out of busy sales people, thought it’s a common goal of social software platforms to capture it. A reward system that encourages this and offers public recognition through a leaderboard, a key game mechanic, can turn the trick as sales people are often very competitive.
This sales best practices example is one of the ways that Badgeville integrates with IBM Connections. You can also reward participation in the wikis, blogs, for voting, contributing to ideation forums and other aspects across any department. You can decide on both the behavior and the context to reward. Since the desired behaviors vary from company to company, Badgeville offers the ability to set your targets and context. You get Achievement rewards that can be combined to get a higher level Mission reward for a desired collection of behaviors. You can have many leaderboards within and across different groups.
Another feature in the Connections integration is reputation management. Reputation is earned through high value behaviors, rather than merely being attributed to what people say they’re good at doing. This earned reputation then travels with a user, both across Connections communities, and to other enterprise systems being gamified by Badgeville. So if you are level 5 expert on a topic, your comment in an activity stream carries this designation. Here is a sample reputation management screen.
A product launch being managed through a social software platform like Connections is an excellent use case for Badgeville’s behavior platform, since multiple groups and multiple behaviors need to be involved for success. Each group has different behaviors to reward and it is useful for each group to see what the other is doing. For example, the marketing people need to see that the sales people are properly trained on how to introduce the product to customers.
Badgeville offers companies a way to get value form their IT investments by encouraging and rewarding participation. The ROI for Badgeville is actually increasing the ROI for a firm’s IT investments. In one case, a company saw a 600% increase in internal blog posts after Badgeville was implemented. This makes sense to me. With some studies showing that up to 67% of employees are disengaged with their work, targeted rewards can be a useful and effective way to drive up the level of engagement for the benefit of everyone.
Other key metrics Badgeville reports center around employee engagement and training completion:
Here are some photos from the ferry terminal building in San Francisco which has become a great collection of food shops and restaurants. I am also including photos from another wonderful waterfront area at the Marina.
I was in San Francisco recently and want to report on some new places I tried as well as some recommendations I received. As always I am interested in your thoughts on this topic.
Farmer Brown describes itself as farm fresh soul food and I would agree. We had some great fried chicken with greens and mac and cheese, shrimp and grits, and gumbo seen below. It is located at 25 Mason at Market. 415-409-farm.
Moss Room is located inside the California Academy of Sciences, and open for both lunch and dinner service. We had a great dinner. I had shrimp and polenta repeating my shrimp and grits from Farmer Brown but it was different and great with speck. There is actually moss on a living wall with lots of carp and other fish swimming underneath. It is located at 55 Music Concourse Drive, Golden Gate Park, San Francisco CA 415 876 6121.
Greens is one of the original gourmet vegetarian restaurants. I have had their first cookbook for some time and they now have several. Fresh local produce is the starting point. Even non-vegetarians like myself will like it. It is on the waterfront at Building A, Fort Mason Center Restaurant: 415-771-6222 Greens to Go: 415-771-6330
Cowgirl Creamery makes a small collection of cheese -- four, soft aged and three fresh cheeses. They get their milk from Marin County and have an outlet at the Ferry Terminal Building in San Francisco. I had a selection of their cheeses and a wonderful tomato soup. It is located at 1 Ferry Building # 17 San Francisco, (415) 362-9354
R and G Lounge – I had a wonderful two pound hard shell crab that had been battered and deep fried. You had to pick apart like eating a lobster. There was a nice combination of the greasy fried exterior and the light clean crab meat interior. “For years, every Christmas evening, the SF food mafia converge for a special in-kitchen banquet @ R&G”.- John Maloney. It is located at 631 Kearny Street San Francisco, (415) 982-7877
Others recommended by another dinner at R and G who seemed quite knowledgeable.
Thanh Long – Great for Vietnamese style garlic crab. It is located a4101 Judah Street on the corner of 46th Avenue, San Francisco, CA 415.665.1146
Zushi Puzzle – great sushi and sashimi – good for the exotics. It is located at 1910 Lombard Street San Francisco (415) 931-9319
Dumpling House – It is known for its Shanghai dumplings. It is located at 3641 Balboa St.(between 37th Ave & 38th Ave) San Francisco (415) 831-9288
Tony’s Pizza. Excellent old style pizza. It is located at 1570 Stockton St. San Francisco (415) 835-9888
Trattoria Contadina is located at the corner of Powell and Mason. Traditional family style Italian cuisine. 1800 Mason Street San Francisco (415) 982-5728
Java Beach – 60s style coffee house near Thanh Long - It is located at 2650 Sloat Boulevard San Francisco. (415) 731-2965
Customers spent $767.4 million on social software globally in 2011, and will spend almost $4.5 billion in 2016, according to IDC. That is a better than 40% growth. However, one of the factors that will work to slow down the momentum. is the involvement needed from IT departments to deploy and integrate the software. Dion Hitchcliffe, address one critical means to address this integration issue in his post, Enterprise Social Networks Need Open Standards.
Dion writes, “social media in general has proliferated so extensively now that there are often a half dozen or more social apps that we use every day in our personal lives, in the workplace, or both. But they usually have quite limited interoperability when it comes to our identities, data integration, and inter-social network user experience. Thus, our work in them is fragmented and siloed, limiting their reach and value. Standards would greatly help with this.” I could not agree more.
He goes on to note that with the rise of the app store, IT will move more into on-demand and disposable world. This will make the shelf-life of applications shorter. There must be a way to “easily and simply achieve continuity as the social foundation beneath us shifts and changes. Open standards make it possible to swap out obsolete and outdated social components, move our data over as necessary, and keep working with as little disruption as possible..”
He also points the need for social software to be part of the enterprise application architecture and connect with traditional work apps in a central way. This is a topic I have written about extensively on this blog and certainly support all of his points. I see open standards as one of the critical success factors for social software to enable social business.
I first covered my friend Luis Suarez move away from email in 2008 – see Luis Suarez Frees Himself From E-Mail’s Grip and Much More. At the time Luis wrote in the article, Giving up on Work e-mail - Status Report on Weeks 15 to 20, “Instead of responding individually to messages that arrived in my in-box, I started to use more social networking tools, like instant messaging, blogs and wikis, among many others.” He added however, “I never gave up my work e-mail address, because I still need it for some work-related activities — for example, for one-on-one discussions that are too private and confidential to discuss publicly.”
This still holds as Luis recently talked with Kate Bassett about his take on life outside the inbox – see Thinking outside the inbox ‘improves team work’. Luis sates that he is not trying to get rid of email although but to reduce its power over our lives. Thus power can be oppressive. I saw a study that found half of respondents checking their email in bed, starting at around 7:09 AM and 68% check email before 8 AM. It also effects the evening as 38% at the dinner table. 69% can’t go to sleep without checking email and 40% do so after 10 PM.
The rise of social business can greatly reduce the use of email for things that are better address in the transparency of group collaboration. To facilitate the transition many of the vendors are integrating their tools with email. You can work within the email client and have content go directly into the social software for more efficiently distribution and comment. The reverse is also possible as content created with the social tool can be automatically sent out through email. See for example - Harmon.ie Provides Social Email to Push Enterprise Collaboration Adoption.
These are all good trends. However, let’s hope we use the efficiency of the social tools and do not become slaves to them as many have done with Facebook.