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Top 6 Social Business Patterns for ROI!

May 23, 2013

It’s easy to see how the world has adopted social media to help strengthen ties between people all over the world. People like to share and the explosive growth of Facebook and all the other social media platforms out there are surely a testament to the fact that we like to share and discover what our friends are up to.  (IBM is, of course, the market leader at applying social techniques to business situations. Our entire Social Business Platform is the best in the market, four years in succession, according to IDC. )

Why these 6 Patterns Matter to Your Company:
While you might see how social could apply in a business setting, and understand that somehow harnessing some of these principles might be beneficial to improving how your organization works, you might not know where to start, or how the common business processes you work with could be transformed with social business.  Or you may be looking for the top ROI yields.   Or how to embed social without the S word (yes, that’s Social that some people view Social as Play!)
It’s for these reasons that we have created the Social Business Patterns or Use Cases.

  • Identify top ROI cases
  • Showcase the value and business outcome with having to use the S word
  • Allow you to learn from others

These are a suite of example business processes common to many industries. We show how these processes can be improved using IBM’s Platform for Social Business and, most importantly, what return on investment you can expect to realize from implementing the use cases.  These are not IT solutions, however. They are examples of business processes which will be very similar to your own. Using and adapting these examples can allow you to improve the communication, collaboration, awareness, knowledge-sharing, morale and efficiency of your organisation in simple but very effective ways.

Over the coming blog posts I will look at each of these in more depth, but let me outline to you the areas IBM’s Use Cases fall into:
Finding Expertise
Being able to locate the expertise in your organization is vital in many situations. Almost any service organization relies entirely on the knowledge of its subject matter experts. Manufacturing organizations such as car manufacturers, oil & gas producers and many others need to know how to solve problems quickly and easily without re-inventing the wheel and by accessing the expertise of the right people. Travel and transportation organizations’ entire business is built on being safe and reliable. These two facets are based on them being experts in their chosen fields and making the most of their staff’s expertise.  Finding Expertise focuses on how any organization can make the most of their experts. Whether it’s finding the right person in critical situations or unlocking the tacit knowledge in the experts’ heads to build the collective expertise of the organization.

expertise
Knowledge Sharing & Innovation
Social Business solutions are at the forefront of helping organizations all over the world increase their level of innovation.  Social helps to drive the process of innovation by giving ideas and new concepts places to grow and adapt based on the collective knowledge of the participants.  Use of social demonstrates how you can create a more nimble and flexible organization with dramatic return on investment opportunities backed by real client examples.

ideation

External Customer Insights
Many organizations nowadays have a presence on social media. They now have Facebook and other popular social network accounts, some use these to great effect and are generating real new business.   You can boost your selling power by unifying your sales people and distribution chain together with the most important people to your organization – your customers.

There are a set of sub cases around the external focus:

  • Customer Service.  Since empowered customers with social tools are changing the focus of business from selling to “partnering” , engaged employees lead to…higher service, quality, and productivity, which leads to… higher customer satisfaction, which leads to… increased sales & profit.
  • Sales.   Using social to better target individuals, not just demographics and segments to better sell to your client.
  • Community Building.  Using community to target your advocates and drive loyalty into your base or to recruit and learn from a new client set is a powerful ROI case.

expertise

Recruiting and On-boarding
Your organization lives and dies by the quality of its people. Attracting and retaining the best people in the market is one sure way to make sure that you are investing for your future.  To be able to demonstrates how you can enormously increase the time-to-value of new employees, increase the retention rate of your employees and provide much faster access to experts, highlights the focus on people as an important part of your strategy.
Everyone involved in bringing new people on board, including the new recruit themselves, wants their endeavour to be a success. How do you go about ensuring that happens? More than simply “inducting” a new member of staff, how do you streamline the recruitment, assessment and hiring processes?

new hire

Mergers and Acquisitions
Did you know that between fifty and eight three percent of mergers and acquisitions fail? This is an enormous cost for everyone involved, both financially and in terms of morale of the staff and customer and stakeholder confidence.  A focus on social in acquisitions can help reduce this failure rate by improving the key business processes involved in mergers and acquisitions. It focuses on the people and the culture associated with the organizations coming together and demonstrates how employee retention, failure rate of acquisition and communication can all be improved.
Safety
Social can assist in helping your organization improve its safety record and have a huge impact on ROI for worker’s compensation and injuries.  . The social tools within our solution can help you reduce incidents, increase effectiveness for your existing safety programs and accelerate the adoption of a culture of safety amongst everyone concerned.   Many industries use simple, but effective and tested approaches to using social collaboration can improve the safety record of your organisation and its reputation.

safety
Join Me
We’re going to explore each of these Use Cases in more depth in the coming blog posts here, so I hope you’ll join me as we deep-dive into how social business, and IBM’s Platform for Social Business in particular can help your organization.

As always, I’d really appreciate your feedback and comments!  To get more information, you can get the summary report here!

https://www14.software.ibm.com/webapp/iwm/web/signup.do?source=swg-US_Lotus_WebMerch&S_PKG=ov14017

6 comments

  1. Dear Sandy, use cases are the right way to go. I´m curious about the cases and the cause-effect-relations described along with KPI selected to lead to quantified benefit and ultimately RoI. Go for it.; Michael


  2. One of the great posts I have read on Social Business RoI in recent times. Crisp and to the point!! I have following nuggets to take- Social Business could contribute greatly in knowledge share/ crowd sourcing & collaboration with subject experts, insights based on customer feedback/ social CRM, Social on boarding and sharing of organisations cultures both for new recruits and M&A, Safety & security for overall organisational well being. Enterprise Social covers all areas which could show fast RoI. Grt post!!


  3. This could be almost an eBook. Super article. Thanks


    • Thanks what I am working on!!! Great idea. Sandy


  4. Oh my goodness! Impressive article dude! Many thanks, However I am experiencing issues with your RSS.

    I don’t know why I can’t join it. Is there anyone else having
    the same RSS problems? Anyone that knows the solution will you kindly respond?
    Thanks!!


    • OK> I’ll check it out. Thanks for asking about it!



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