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Are You Looking to Purchase an Enterprise 2.0 Solution? What You Need to Know

Posted by on August 5, 2010

I wrote an article for CMS Wire (more on that later) entitled “What Buyers of Enterprise 2.0 Solutions Need to Consider Before Making a Purchase.”  The whole point of the article is to address that small/medium and enterprise organizations have very different needs and capabilities when it comes to Enterprise 2.0, yet most vendors sell the same to every organization regardless of size.  Well actually, that’s not entirely true.  They do make some modifications to features and pricing, but that’s really meaningless.  Vendors need to understand businesses in order to sell to them.  Here’s a snippet from the article to clarify what I mean.  Very special thanks to Gil Yehuda who in addition to being an adviser to Chess is perhaps the smartest E2.0 guy out there.

“Enterprise collaboration tools are becoming all the rage these days. But before you head off to the store to buy the latest and greatest, here are a few things to consider depending on if you are a large, enterprise organization, or a small-mid sized business.

Not too long ago the Wall Street Journal published an article entitled: “Enterprise 2.0 Goes Mainstream As Collaboration Tools Mature.” Indeed, Enterprise 2.0 collaboration tools are maturing — but who gets the most benefit from this market? It’s evident that large enterprises certainly need help around collaboration. Workers in large organizations frequently admit to not knowing what is going on within their own company, not being be able to find the right information they need, or not being able to connect with the right people to get their job done.

But, what about the smaller organizations? Do small and medium businesses have the same needs as enterprises when it comes to collaboration? For the purpose of this article let’s define small and medium companies to mean between 25 and 1000 employees, anything beyond that is an Enterprise.

So when the WSJ tells us that Enterprise 2.0 tools are getting better and going mainstream — you might be thinking that the time is finally right to get your hands on one of these tools to finally address your collaboration needs. But what do you need to know before you go to market? Here are some tips geared to different sized organizations.”

To read the rest of the article please check out CMS Wire and let me know what you think.

  • Great insights Jacob! Read the rest of it on CMS Wire. I couldn't agree with you more that SMEs sometimes don't have clear business processes established for their employees and they need help from collaboration software to shape those processes. When I think of human vs. machine, one question inevitably raised in my head that is, the role of culture and company norm in the adoption process. I read earlier another great article by you, part 3 of implementing Enterprise 2.0 at Intuit: culture and organizational shifts, where you examined the role of culture in the implementation process and its impact on shaping employees' work behaviors. I was just wondering that do you think business process is the most vigorous reflection of a company's culture and how to best align the new process, assume it was established by the new tool, with existing company culture and norms?

    Thank you!
    Keep the great post coming!

    • As usual thanks for the kind words and glad you found the article informative. Sadly legal plays a large role in company culture nowadays as they manage what should/could be done and what shouldn't. This is why it's so hard for companies to get involved with social. Culture should be led by people not by terms, legal definitions, or antiquated policies.

      • Legal terms and regulations are exactly what make a company bureaucratic and to loss its innovation. It is almost a paradox, one of which a company is seeking to invent the next best product/service while at the same time, tries to manage a fleet of employees through rules and regulations. I hope the next generation of E2.0 software can really break down those walls and barriers and rejuvenate large corporations with energy, agility and innovation.

  • Niedzielski Lindsey

    Great post, Jacob. This is an excellent resource for IM professionals who are looking to purchase Enterprise 2.0. We have a community for IM professionals ( that discusses related topics and we have bookmarked this post for our users. Looking forward to reading more of your work and sharing with our community.