The W3C Social Business Community Group (SBCC) has published a new whitepaper entitled A CTO's Guide to Social Business. The paper "..brings together diverse business focused experiences and perspectives into a single guide for IT and business leaders who want to know more about social business." The target audience includes CIOs, CTOs and IT architects who need to understand Social Business, its technical components, and the business and technical implications of incorporating social business into their overall corporate and IT strategies. Within the paper, social business is defined as "an organization that applies social networking tools and culture to business roles, processes and outcomes. A social business enables people to engage productively in a business context through collaboration and interconnecting business activities with social content."
Examples of social capabilities include:
- Marketing and Customer Service
- Human Resources
- Project Management
- Cross-department collaboration
Technical considerations addressed include:
Technical Components are discussed through a detailed Business Process Visibility sample use case that discusses these key aspects:
- Activity Streams
- Gadgets and Embedding
- Social Graph
A getting started section defines the key steps that a CTO should take to incorporate social business. The following steps are discussed in great detail:
- Establish Strategic Vision
- Identify Initial Use Cases
- Develop a Social Business Technical Strategy
- Proof of Concept
I would encourage anyone who is looking at social business, or who has started down the path of implementing aspects of social business, to download and read the paper. If you do, and you have any questions, please let me know and I will share it with the W3C SBCC.
Next steps for the SBCC are to hold a workshop whose focus will be to identify the real pain points that enterprises are experiencing and to understand/define what standards are necessary to ensure that adopting social business is not only easier at the enterprise level, but supports both inter- and intra-enterprise uses of social business concepts, applications, and services. I will post a blog when the call for papers is issued.
If you are interested in the W3C SBCC and would like to participate (W3C membership not required for community group involvement), you should reach out to current chair Don Buddenbaum. For a better understanding of how SAP is using Social Business concepts and standards in its solutions, take a look at Vitaly Vainer's posting Open Social as UI Component Model for Enterprise Apps Part I.