IBM Nov. 8 will roll out a new version of Lotus Connections with social analytics geared to cut out the social media noise.
IBM Nov. 8 plans to roll out a new version of Lotus
Connections with social analytics, making good
on a promise the company made at Lotusphere last January.
The computing giant also said it plans to unveil a new
services unit intended to help organizations adopt social networking software
in the enterprise.
Lotus Connections Next includes all of the usual software
components of the three-year-old enterprise social collaboration platform,
for employee profiles, blogging, bookmarks and community and
Lotus Connection Next adds recommendations to the
existing ratings, rankings and reputations capabilities in the platform. The
platform also features better utilities for moderating user-generated content
and new compliance and auditing capabilities.
For this launch, IBM has listened to the complaints of
enterprise workers that the glut of status updates and other socially generated
messages have made it difficult for users to discern valuable signals from
To improve the signal-to-noise ratio, the company has added
analytics capabilities to help users discover other people in a corporate network
and "understand the connections that are taking place between themselves
and their colleagues."
These tools will be applied across the myriad recommendations, ratings, rankings and
reputations capabilities in Lotus Connections Next.
"With the cultural embrace of social media and
social networking, employees are demanding similar tools in the work place to
help them be more effective, responsive and innovative within the context of
the work they do," the company added in a statement sent to eWEEK.
The platform will put IBM on more equal footing with
rivals such as Jive Software, Socialcast, Lithium Technologies, Attensity and
several makers of software that cuts out the chatter to find more relevant
contacts and content.
The launch of IBM Lotus Connections Next comes almost 10
months after IBM officials said
at Lotusphere the new platform would launch in the
second half of 2010.
In an interview at Lotusphere 2010, Jeff Schick, vice
president of social software for IBM, told eWEEK:
"Connections will provide the backbone for
collaboration for all data analytics, performance management and business
intelligence from IBM, and you'll see the plugability into Connections such
that if you had a large social network supporting your brand awareness or
customer loyalty programs in an externally-facing fashion, you could use our
data analytics technologies to garner any sort of insight and plug that
IBM's Lotus Connections Next will form the backbone of Big Blue's Project Vulcan
, a sort of super collaboration platform that brings enterprise
applications into the current mix.