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Why Enterprise Apps Need A Touch Of Facebook
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Why Enterprise Apps Need A Touch Of Facebook


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At CeBIT 2009 Sydney, Australia's Enterprise conference, Geoff McQueen had the pleasure of delivering a presentation which highlighted the main challenge affecting the success of enterprise software …

At CeBIT 2009 Sydney, Australia's Enterprise conference, Geoff McQueen had the pleasure of delivering a presentation which highlighted the main challenge affecting the success of enterprise software implementations: realising effective user adoption.

Looking around at who does user adoption well, and who can teach Enterprise a thing or two, the story of Facebook - with its defined features, platform nature, security model and more - comes to the top of your mind.

This presentation looks at what enterprise software - and the people who purchase, implement and manage it - can learn from the runaway success of Facebook as a user engagement case study.

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  • 1. Why Enterprise Software Needs a Touch of
  • 2. What I’ll be covering...
    • Why is Enterprise Software so hard to implement & why is it getting harder, not easier?
    • Which ingredient is 70x more important to ‘success’ than software functionality?
    • How’s Facebook has succeeded by driving user engagement?
    • What lessons can you draw from its success for your next enterprise software project?
    Source: Michael Mitchener, Flickr
  • 3. Why is Enterprise Software so hard to do?
    • The costs of doing it are high
      • Licences, Consultants, Training
    • The costs of failing at it are high
      • Advantages lost, time lost
    • You can choose your friends, but you can’t choose your users
    • Many studies outline the problems, but are the problems the same as they were?
    Source: ScottS101, Flickr
  • 4. Why is achieving success getting harder?
    • Enterprise software rollouts are increasingly for productivity, not transactional tools
    • Most productivity software has higher level benefits (optional) for wider user groups (spread)
    • Less focus on specific tasks and users means compulsory or critical for no-one
    • eg CRM failure rates still >50%
    Source: jcorrius, Flickr
  • 5. Are we looking in the wrong place?
    • A lot of energy goes into vendor and product selection and process alignment to get the right features and fit
    • A recent study has found Effective User Adoption is the most important factor by far
    • Less than 10% of buyers say their adoption rate is over 70%; 2/3rds say it’s less than 50%
    Source: Achieving Enterprise Success, Sandhill Group & Neochange, 2008
  • 6. What happens when users don’t adopt?
    • Garbage In, Garbage Out
      • Reports are meaningless
      • Further destroys user trust
      • Governance & risk management suffer
    • Economies of scale benefits & network effects are lost
    • Future productivity initiatives find it harder to get going...
    • And yet, technically, the software probably works fine
    Source: Michael Mitchener, Flickr
  • 7. Who succeeds at Effective User Adoption?
    • Some of the most successful websites today depend entirely on effective user adoption:
      • Wikipedia
      • YouTube
      • Facebook
      • TripAdvisor
      • ... and many many more
    • Facebook’s platform nature & sustained user engagement makes them more interesting from enterprise context
    Source: Social Web Research
  • 8. A quick look at Facebook’s success
    • Has more than 200 million active users
      • If a country, is 5 th largest
    • On average, each user logs in 18 times a month
    • More than half log in daily
    • Around 10% update status at least daily
    • 3.5 Billion minutes total a day
    • More than 1 billion pieces of content contributed a day
    Is now 8x bigger than when this chart was drawn! Source: FaberNovel Consulting & Comscore, June 2007
  • 9. Facebook’s success in user adoption
    • Uses offline, social bonds to drive adoption & engagement
    • Effective tools to help harvest & invite ‘friends’ via email
    • Has crossed into mainstream: mum’s are getting on board!
    • Following user adoption comes user engagement
    Source: Facebook
  • 10. How they build ongoing user engagement
    • ‘ News Feed’ that invites discovery & contribution
    • Notifications via email to draw delinquent users back in
    • Tools that make life easier (events, some apps)
    • Making it easy for users to contribute content (photos, videos)
  • 11. What can we learn from Facebook in Biz?
    • User engagement is key – do you look for it when buying?
    • Social drivers: emphasising the user’s knowledge & connections can drive conspicuous adoption
    • Users expect to be contributors, increasingly so (taught by FB)
    • Don’t fear email – harness it instead of trying to replace it
    • Automate & integrate aggressively
    Source: Marco Poulos, Flickr
  • 12. Conclusions
    • User adoption & engagement as a critical & overlooked role in achieving software success
    • The importance is amplified when dealing with ‘optional’ interaction platforms
    • Use social drivers, make contribution easy & conspicuous
    • Facebook get their contribution for free: you’re paying them!
    Source: Max XX, Flickr
  • 13. Questions?
    • Web:
    • Email: [email_address]
    • Twitter: @geoffmcqueen, @hiive
    • Phone: 1800 2 HIIVE (1800 2 44483)
    • CeBIT: Webciety Showcase, Hall 4, Stand 6
    • Launching Affinity 3.1 with drinks @ 5:15pm today