It’s time to speed up the implementation of social technology in organizations

Estimated reading time: 5 minutes

I’m a follower and reader of research by the American consultancy company McKinsey, above all of its studies regarding social technology or social business. Social technology covers both the internal and external scope: internal tools are those that promote internal collaboration, such as Enterprise Social Networks; whilst external technology is what can be found outside the company in question, such as, social commerce, corporate blogs and general networks like Facebook and Twitter, among many others.

The latest study published by McKinsey about social technology was in July last year. Later, in November, they published the article Capturing business value using social technology, which includes a very interesting summary revealing that the improvement in communication and the productivity of employees when social technology is used contributes to an increase in productivity of between 20 and 25%. The sectors where these types of services are most used, and therefore contribute more value to the business are the B2B sectors, such as advertising, auditing, engineering and consultancy services; for other sectors the percentage is also significant but with a lower level of influence.

I really don’t understand why businesses and their managers don’t speed up the implementation of social technology in their companies.

I’d like to believe it’s due partly to ignorance and the lack of development of their digital skills for accessing this information; and also that they don’t have the personnel with the skills to manage social technology. However, in fact it’s the managers of these companies who should be looking after innovation and be at the forefront of managing the team. From experience and after years spent in management positions, in general the short-term occupies an excessively large amount of managers’ time. This group, which should favor change and innovation, is in many cases the one that holds back these initiatives, due to ignorance, turning the organization into a slow institution that manages innovation badly.

As this is my first post on the ZyncroBlog for 2013, here’s my personal list of trends 2.0 that I’d like to see implemented in many companies:

  1. Mass implementation and management of enterprise social networks created with the aim of being essential tools for managing innovation and practice communities that provide value to the business and generate more productivity among people, and streamline decisions.
  2. Development of digital skills at all levels in the organization, from management committees down, in a cascade process that will generate important strategic and operational changes in companies.
  3. Creation of digital skills maps necessary for leading the transformation process to enterprise 2.0 in the strictest sense of the word.
  4. Appointment in large companies of a social technology manager. This should be a multidiscipline and cross-company role that reaches all departments.
  5. Management of the personal brand of key managers and ambassadors to support and contribute to the positioning of the company brand in the internal and external social environment.
  6. Importance and management of the social influence on those brand ambassadors of the company, strategically located in different areas of the organization.
Mari Carmen Martín (@maricarmenmar) is a trained Industrial Psychologist and an expert in HR. Currently she works for Cloudtalent, a company of the Humannova group, where she is responsible for creating personal branding programs for executives and professionals.