Social media a powerful tool for enterprises

By : |October 28, 2009 0

BANGALORE, INDIA: Hogging on to social media bandwagon has become inevitable for companies even though some per cent of misuse is there. Enterprises that do not want to go on social media can be left in a piquant situation like an “ostrich left buried deep neck in sand”, observed Prasanto Kumar Roy, president and chief editor, ICT Publications, CyberMedia Group, today.

P K Roy“We have used emails successfully in business for 20 long years. The social media, with its reach and the magnitude of impact, has clearly emerged as the favorite tool of communication for the generation next. Enterprises which do not go on social media can be clearly left in dark,” Roy said addressing a session on ‘Enterprise 2.0 – Myth or Magic’ at the second day of CIOL Enterprise Next Virtual Conference.

Elaborating on the use of social media like Twitter or Facebook, Roy said they are playing a crucial role to reach out to the world. Today, we have all forms of discussions taking place on the social media – like company grievances, employee grievances and complaints about products, or anybody just telling to the whole world about a new happening in his locality.

According to Roy, what is more impressive about the social media is that people are able to connect with almost anybody. Whenever somebody tweets a complaint about a product, the companies respond promptly. This clearly shows that almost every forward looking company is present on the social media.

Today, we have US President Barack Obama or India’s Minister of State for External Affairs Shashi Tharoor tweeting. Their popularity have increased and they have been able to build a big fan following with their reachability and transparency. The same applies to enterprises also.

The social media is conceived by some as a threat due to the possibility of classified information being leaked or quoted out of context. But communication in public actually adds value to an enterprise as their employees can be more reachable and transparent, Roy observed.

What should CIOs do?

Social media is out there and the question is, if you are ‘going public’. If a CIO has decided to go for social media, then he or she should define a policy and set some goals.

Roy observed that enterprises have hierarchy setup and have defined roles as to who should communicate on behalf of the company. But, with social media around, it is nearly impossible for enterprises to stop employees from communicating. So, enterprises need to come out with clear policies to define the priorities for communication.

Having defined a policy, enterprises can think of building on their capabilities with the existing resources.

Roy suggested that the enterprises can build Wikipedia-like scenarios so that a number of employees can contribute to a database and make the best use of the same. Building such a setup, companies will help colleagues to gain from experiences, which otherwise can block the knowledge transfer.

For excerpts from P K Roy’s conversation with the attendees at CIOL Enterprise Next Virtual Conference click:

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