Yes to Enterprise Social

Cameron Sturdevant Cameron Sturdevant is the executive editor of Enterprise Networking Planet. Prior to ENP, Cameron was technical analyst at PCWeek Labs, starting in 1997. Cameron finished up as the eWEEK Labs Technical Director in 2012. Before his extensive labs tenure Cameron paid his IT dues working in technical support and sales engineering at a software publishing firm . Cameron also spent two years with a database development firm, integrating applications with mainframe legacy programs. Cameron's areas of expertise include virtual and physical IT infrastructure, cloud computing, enterprise networking and mobility. In addition to reviews, Cameron has covered monolithic enterprise management systems throughout their lifecycles, providing the eWEEK reader with all-important history and context. Cameron takes special care in cultivating his IT manager contacts, to ensure that his analysis is grounded in real-world concern. Follow Cameron on Twitter at csturdevant, or reach him by email at
By Cameron Sturdevant  |  Posted 2011-02-09 Email Print this article Print

The more I use enterprise social collaboration tools the more I like them. Unlike the sluicing deluge of Twitter or the (often unhelpful) mash up of personal and business communication on Facebook, enterprise-only social media is a non-stop productivity stream.

That does mean there is one slight drawback to enterprise social media tools (see my 1-2 review of Chatter Free and Yammer Basic at shortly). Whereas I can pretty safely miss bits and pieces of information in Twitter and Facebook, I don’t feel good about missing important news that is flowing in the enterprise activity stream.

There are plenty of easy tools that can help. Chatter makes it possible to follow documents and files. The regular Chatter client found in the paid license editions and Chatter Plus can also follow deals and all manner of other information. Yammer let me segment questions or events so I could zero in on these types of communication.

The most important characteristic of both social platforms--and the many other social collaboration tools currently on the market--is that I was sure my communication was contained within a secure boundary and that I was talking with people who share a vested interest in our mutual mission success. To be quite frank, it felt like I was walking into a room where I knew everyone was on my side when I started testing these products with my fellow content and management users at eWEEK.

There is certainly a place for social network communication that is open to customers, competitors, pundits, researchers. But what is also clear to me is that there is an equal or greater value in bringing social tools inside the enterprise where they can really unleash some productive potential. |

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