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People, process and technology – enter Enterprise 2.0

I’ve got to say I have an interesting concern – but a sense of delight at the possibilities – about the speed and capacity of change of Enterprise 2.0. Let me explain…

In the world of application development, there is a serious and mounting argument from the rapid development / iterative prototyping camp versus the waterfall (requirements, design, build, test, deploy, support) purists. When it comes to applications that affect corporations – that is, across the enterprise – I am a firm believer in the latter.

Iterative development is great when there are only a few people involved – or a small point solution that only affects a few people. When you start getting more people involved, the challenges go up.

The challenges include:

  • People – commitment to using a new process and a new underpinning system – and a common way of doing so
  • Process – is the process we are using common to all? Do we all do our own thing?)
  • Technology – solid analysis of the problems and a clear view of how to resolve them with technology

Now with Web 2.0 / Enterprise 2.0, the beauty is that these applications are breaking new ground in making the process neatly tied up in the applications and making it really simple for people to follow the process without having to think too much about it – or having to refer to training manuals or help guides. However, the ease of picking one up, configuring them differently according to different needs – but at the same time missing the opportunity to apply them consistently is the challenge.

The takeaway points to consider:

  • If you are going to go for a Web 2.0 application, do document your processes and make sure people apply it consistently within the organisation
  • Software developers can learn from the myriad of Web 2.0 projects smart ways of developing inviting interfaces and very simple and fast sign up and use approaches
  • The next raft of successful enterprise scale applications from the Web 2.0 environment will make a dent on traditional software only when sold, implemented and supported like enterprise software

All comments welcome!

2 thoughts on “People, process and technology – enter Enterprise 2.0

  1. Interesting post Justin, especially as I come from the ‘People’ side of things. I think this is one of the biggest problems in any implementation – people, apart from the technologists’ rarely understand what they are getting. It all sounds good (cost savings, marketing, streamlining etc) but somewhere in there someone has to make it happen long after the software is considered ‘in’ – and that’s where it falls down.

    Organisations today need to take time to educate key people on the implementation and then educate all users to become effective. If this doesn’t occur, we will have years of technologists sprouting their own virtues and the end user simply shrugging their shoulders. Add to that the overwhelm of work technology ‘provides’ and the levels of stress that is ever increasing and we’re just waiting for the first lawsuit! (God that got serious all of a sudden!! 🙂 )

    The ‘beauty these applications make things simple’ also have the dark side of creating automatons. People need to love their work, not just do it.

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