IClick to enlarge love to study what the market is talking about. As they say, knowledge is gold in today’s knowledge economy. Well, yesterday I read a paper distributed by Jive: “The Intranet Is Dead: Long Live the Social Intranet.” It made me smile! 

I smiled because I absolutely agree with the point that Jive made – the intranet as we have known it is dead (R.I.P.). The traditional intranet has morphed from a network of content and application access to a network of people and collective knowledge. But isn’t that what we have been saying for many years now and isn’t there more to all this than just that intranets are dead?

There certainly is. Here at IBM and among our leading social business clients, “the intranet is dead” is not a new observation. We are now focused on the next chapter, helping business leaders better harness this new reality to lead in their markets.

Our research shows that some 90 percent of businesses across the globe are planning to fundamentally open up their organizations in entirely new ways, becoming highly transparent, client centric and fast moving – tuned to the individual desires of people, not broad based segments. In this context, distinctive expertise, thriving digital ecosystems and evidence-based decision making become the catalysts of growth. They are investing to:

  1. Empower people by creating new production lines of innovation fueled by the collective knowledge of the workplace and the marketplace.

  1. Understand people by harnessing the human face of data based on a fundamentally new source of behavioral and sentimental insights.

  1. Trust people by deploying new organizational designs and processes which optimize workplace talent and open up agile marketplace engagement. Policy, security and governance matter, thus infrastructure matters.

Client success, therefore, requires a holistic approach to deploying new social-savvy business processes that unlock the potential of people (consumers and employees). Success requires leveraging an integrated approach to optimizing human capital management, channeling knowledge-based communities and delivering exceptional customer experiences, all built on a common, enterprise-grade, highly secure cloud, mobile and big data and analytics foundation. This is what is unique about IBM Social Business; we recognize that the social intranet is just the tip of the iceberg. Marketplaces and workplaces are fusing together in entirely new ways, unlocking new engines of innovation.

We at IBM have been delivering value to our clients in this space since 2007 with the launch of IBM Connections, designed to transform the intranet into the social intranet.  Now, for four consecutive years, IDC has ranked IBM #1 in worldwide market share for enterprise social software.  Similarly, IBM has been positioned in the Leaders Quadrant of Gartner Inc.’s 2013 Magic Quadrant for Social Software in the workplace for five years in a row.

Where IBM Connections becomes even more powerful, however, is when you fuse it with the other key elements of what social businesses are looking to accomplish. We’ve built upon our social intranet leadership by integrating Kenexa (the leading human capital management solution provider), digital and social analytics, digital portal experiences, dynamic personalization, digital marketing management solutions and e-commerce solutions into our offerings.

Collectively, this is what clients are looking force.  All businesses are becoming social businesses whether they realize it or not, and that is why 62 percent are expanding their investment to harness the transformative value of social business.

As Jive points out, the social intranet is now status quo. But we at IBM are focused on how our clients are looking to build upon this new reality to drive business outcomes. For a good conversation about social business, check out this podcast from Social Media Philanthropy about how to rally the troops around a transformational force.

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