Socialin the consumer space has been growing at an unprecedented pace over the past few years.Social has clearly rewired the way we communicate in our personal lives, and we believe it will have a similar impact on the way people get things done at work. But when you come to think about it, this is similar in a lot of ways to the way other communication tools have evolved, starting in the consumer world and then entering the enterprise, completely redefining the way we work together…
Enterprise Communication has significantly evolved over the past few decades– each new major innovation doesn’t just impact how we communicate, but re-defines how we get work done. The way social is now evolving to be an enterprise communication tool is similar in a lot of ways to how other communications tools, such as email or IM (instant messaging), have entered the enterprise and completely changed the corporate landscape.
Social has clearly rewired the way we communicate in our personal lives, and businesses that have started adopting social in the enterprise are seeing it change the way people get things done at work. The basic premise of social technologies is around open conversations and personal connections. In a world where the pace of innovation has increased dramatically over the last few decades, agility is key. Open conversations and personal connections increase the agility of an organization by helping people connect the dots in an ever-changing world. Customers that have embraced Enterprise Social are driving real business results with social networking, and are “transforming their businesses”. A lot of it is because they embracethe idea that open conversations and personal connections could help them with their most important strategic initiatives. These customers recognize that the only way they can keep up with the pace of change in their industries is to trust their people, and empower them to organize and decide "in the moment." And for these companies, Enterprise Social ismuch more than a newsfeed. It’s a way to change the way their people work together. Companies use Yammer for addressing every imaginable business need, ranging from connecting store managers in a retail operation , to coordinating R&D projects with external partners, and to managing logistics for complex shipping operations….just to name a few examples .We’ve identifiedfour business scenarios that seem to resonate across customers & industries, through which companies are able to drive value from Enterprise Social : increasing employee engagement, improving team collaboration,building a connected organization, and enhancing business agility.
Engaged employees are enthusiastic about their work, they are fully involved in the way an organization works and act in a way that furthers the goals of the organization; in short – they’re doing everything they can to help make a company successful. Social technologies enable companies to remove communication barriers and help employees have a real voice in making the company better – this voice can be heard at all levels and across all geographies. Studies have shown that organizations that have ‘engaged employees’ are more profitable, have higher productivity, and significantly lower turnover.Here you can see that Social technologies go far beyond having simple conversations – they contribute to empower employees to the degree that they both have the tools, and the want to drive positive change across the company.
Team collaboration drives innovative companies, and today’s companies need to move quickly in order to compete. To do that their teams need to:connect, learn from each other, share knowledge, work together –from locations around the world both inside and outside the organization. Social technologies enable teams to be more productive by making it simple to do coordinate tasks among team members, share information, find people, even talk and see each other around the world.Organizations that have started to embrace social technologies are starting to see considerable productivity increases – this is just one of the many benefits of using social technology to make teams more productive.
Connected Organizations is about taking the ‘traditional’ intranet, and making it more dynamic with social technologies.The primary purpose of a traditional intranet is to access content and other applications. They tend to have controlled approaches to content authoring and content management. Adding social capabilities that allow bottom-up creation of content and allow anyone to engage in interactive dialogs around content In many ways the engagement around content is as important as the content itself as it gives content a lifespan that’s much longer than just the time it’s promoted on the intranet – it also provides feedback and discussion mechanisms that help to improve the organizationSocial helps the Intranet come alive and provides a unique perspective based on each individuals social network – combine this with powerful top-down publishing tools to ensure that crucial communications and you have the next generation of Social Intranets.
Whether it’s an exciting acquisition, new product launch or reorganization, it’s more important than ever for companies to be agile; by quickly innovating and responding to customer needs they will be able to outperform competitors and propel a company’s growth and increase shareholders value.Social technologies enable communication across geographies, and at all levels, even between organizations. This means that employees can connect with the people, partners, and customers they need quickly and efficiently. The impact social technologies can have on the ability for a company transform and be agile is huge – in fact more than 64% of organizations that successfully go through a transformation use social to engage and energize people, while driving great communication and involvement.
Changes are happening at such a fast pace. Enterprise Social is enabling organizations to transform their businesses, to harnesses the power of their most valuable asset, their people, by connecting employees, partners, and customers.
Microsoft has an exciting vision for Enterprise Social: we want to help companies transform their business with Enterprise Social. but in order for that to happen, two things are necessary: First, it can't just be a destination. Social must be a natural part of how we work, it has to be seamlessly woven into the tools you use everyday to get your work done. It has to be easy, frictionless and in-context. Microsoft is in a unique position because we own a fantastic set of assets: social, collaboration, email, and unified communications; and we want to combine these tools to create new experiences that help people get things done. We want to have a tool that will allow you to start a conversation in a newsfeed, ping one of the participants on IM, escalate to voice and video, follow-up over email, and circle back to the original conversation with an update; we want to have the context of those conversations follow you across those tools, and have everyone involved to be able to participate in the interactions regardless of where they are or what device they have with them. Some of it is already possible today and we aim to continue and build this “connected experiences” scenario and make it available to everyone. Microsoft has the depth and breadth of capabilities to realize this vision. Second, in order to be successful, social must be a part of a platform that IT can rely on to manage and secure.The information in a social network is some of the most valuable intellectual property in the company, and their platform needs sophisticated security, management and compliance capabilities that don't get in the way of the users but do allow IT to sleep better at night.
As a first step toward the vision of the Social Layer, Yammer introduced ways to both embed the Yammer feed in any biz apps, as well as bring updates from different biz apps into the Yammer feed leveraging open graph.Integrate & Embed: Social isn’t the destination – and it’s crucial that the places we get our work done, including key LOB applications are able to utilize social data both to ENRICH their own experiences through embedding social content (example: Adding a discussion thread to a LOB process), and ensure that social data isn’t silo’d and can be interacted with by users in other applications and experiences through Social Graph integration.
What you can do today, what you’ll be able to do in the near future (within the next year), and our vision for the future.Today: customers can connect the two today with the Yammer web parts and Yammer Open Graph capabilities. Tomorrow: We’re working to build a strong foundational platform that will allow us to quickly iterate changes. To do this we’re working on some key areas first that will enable our future vision: integrated document management through SkyDrive Pro, Aggregating the SharePoint and Yammer feeds, and investing in unified identity, ensuring that users have a great single-sign-on experience.Future: After the work on key foundational aspects, we will take advantage of our new, 90-day release cycle for SharePoint Online and Office 365 to add more and more capabilitiesover time to create connected experiences that combine social, collaboration e-mail, unified communications and an enterprise class platform you can rely on for security, management and compliance.
To align with our vision and roadmap, we’ve made changes to Yammer packaging and pricing. First, Yammer standalone. We're committed to maintaining standalone versions of Yammer for customers who just want a best-in-class enterprise social network. Yammer has historically offered four different options, and we've simplified that to two: a free version called Yammer Basic and a paid version called Yammer Enterprise. Second, Yammer and SharePoint Online. We believe that social and collab are two sides of the same coin, and as the roadmap demonstrates we're working toward a future where they're tightly integrated. To reinforce that notion, we will be adding Yammer to SharePoint Online starting March.And finally, Yammer and Office 365. we envision a future where social is everywhere -- and where people work together using new experiences that combine social with collab, email, and unified communications. As a first step in delivering on that vision, we're adding Yammer to all of our Office 365 Enterprise offerings (E1 through E4) for EA customers.
Help our customers get started with Enterprise Social TODAY.1. Get started with Social today by signing-up to yammer. Have your customer sign-up for Yammer on the spot – they may be surprised to see how many of their co-workers are already using it.2. Review customer success stories3. Check out the latest version of Office 365. You can get more from social by connecting it with the tools you use everyday – Office, SharePoint, Lync, Dynamics CRM.
Social BusinessSocial can mean many things to many people, and it’s important to note that there are two distinct types of Social technologies of interest to the Enterprise.Social Marketing is all about how the Enterprise can leverage external social capabilities from a marketing perspective to gain insight from customers and generally increase sales(or achieve other marketing objectives). This is distinctly different from Social Productivity which is more about how the business actually GET’S it’s work done – this absolutely also includes working with customers and other external parties, but it is about working with them to achieve a common goal.
Three Reasons We Acquired YammerYammer is a crucial part of our social strategy and the reasons for our acquisition are worth talking about:Enterprise Social: Yes – Yammer absolutely has an incredibly engaging Enterprise Social platform – and it’s something that we think will be hugely valuable for us.Rapid Innovation: In many ways this is considered Yammer’s ‘secret sauce’ – it’s a highly agile iterative way to develop focused on continually testing different features, interfaces, experiences and continually refining the product to always be highly engaging.Unique Adoption Model: Yammer doesn’t get ‘deployed’ – it’s the closest an organization can get to ‘instant social’. From day one many organizations already have a sizable social presence that is used as a base for growth.
Yammer + Dynamics RoadmapYammer is a big bet for Microsoft and Microsoft Dynamics CRM. Our investments in Yammer over the longer term include:Bi-directional publishing of business data from Microsoft Dynamics CRM to Yammer and vice versa.For Microsoft Dynamics CRM it means the ability to post messages from CRM to Yammer and vice versa. These messages can relate to CRM records and events or even documents. CRM Users can follow people, accounts, contacts or anything else in the CRM system that they are interested in or responsible for. CRM users can collaborate with colleagues inside their organization or with customers, partners and other stakeholders.Longer term Yammer will facilitate approvals, assignment and document collaboration.
Enterprise Social from Microsoft
Four scenarios from our most successful customers
Employees have an intranet that is social, easy to use, and
can connect employees and systems across the enterprise
McKinsey, The Social Economy, July 2012
Companies experiencing change have one thing in common:
an intense need to focus on people, culture and communication to drive results
McKinsey Global Survey: What Successful
Transformations Share, 2010
New experiences that combine social, collaboration, email, and UC
Enterprise-class platform for security, management, and
Transform your business by connecting employees, partners, and customers
Pervasive social layer connecting people, content, and business
Response to the Dynamics CRM
activity show up on the Yammer feed