News Updates (March 24, 2009)

Collaborative Strategy Guild … A group of collaboration industry analysts launched a new service for commenting on collaborative strategy, and maybe doing consulting projects together. More

Third Party Offerings for SharePoint … Andrew addresses potential problems in using third-party offerings with SharePoint. “However, my experience over the last few years with third party utilities, in particular with the very nature of new and often immature utilities and add-ons, has led me to believe that these tools can be fraught with issues for the unwary.” Much of the advice mirrors what I’m saying in client engagements and workshops. More

Dynamic Filer … 5280 Solutions released Dynamic Filer, for scanning, indexing and searching documents. Documents get bar codes before they are scanned, and when scanned, they are stored in SharePoint. More

Dealing with It All … Dave wonders about storing all unanswered email, to dos and calendar items in a single application, and whether it’s worth it. Eric responds with some thoughts. My $0.02: (a) I have a single trusted system for all this, and it’s saved my bacon, and (b) Dave needs eProductivity, which would deal with a lot of his items, and definitely point #7 about the email to to do transformation. More

Supporting People to Collaborate … Bryan writes about collaboration being about people, and outlines some of the technology that Cisco offers to support collaborative work. “How does one make collaboration an integral aspect of their business. Enter Collaboration-enabled Business Transformation (CEBT). CEBT includes a wide array of web-services including call control for voice, video on demand and streaming video for images, presence for intelligent routing, and a variety of click-to-connect services such as chat, email, web-conference, and voice calling. CEBT has the power to literally transform processes – reducing human latency, improving productivity and driving employee effectiveness.” What appears to be missing is a collaborative workspace product. More

SharePoint Conference 2009 … New Zealand is getting its own SharePoint conference in July 2009, in Wellington. Debbie, Mark and Chan (all SharePoint MVPs) are doing the conference organization. More

Unify Square Expands to Europe … Unify Square expanded its consulting services on Microsoft OCS into Europe. “Unify Square, the most specialized consulting firm in Unified Communications (UC) and Microsoft Office Communications Server (OCS), has expanded its global presence with operations in Bonn, Germany, led by European Managing Director Jochen Kunert, one of the pioneers in enterprise Voice technology and noted author on Microsoft OCS. In addition to global expansion, Unify Square continues to broaden its management team, with some of the UC industry’s top innovators, engineers and consultants.More

Can Twitter Survive the Mainstream? … Nova worries that Twitter won’t survive its leap into the mainstream and a growth in notifications being added to Twitter from other Web services. “Twitter reminds me of CB radio — and that is a double-edged blessing. In Twitter the “radio frequencies” are people and hashtags. If you post to your Twitter account, or do an @reply to someone else, you are broadcasting to all the followers of that account. Similarly, if you tweet something and add hashtags to it, you are broadcasting that to everyone who follows those hashtags.More

Face-to-Face Meetings … Bill outlines a couple of reasons why face-to-face meetings are still essential: (1) you can really meet people, (2) it’s vital for relationship building, and (3) you can close work items faster in face-to-face meetings than by a barrage of email, audio conferencing, and web conferencing. “However, face-to-face meetings still need to happen. The key for the enterprise is to identify when face-to-face meetings have to happen and when communications technology can be more cost effective. As I mentioned in my previous blog on mandated web conferencing, there are scenarios that may require face-to-face meetings – such as when trust needs to be established. It is the intelligent application of communications technologies that provides the enterprise with effective collaboration and a competitive edge in today’s market.More

… and then there’s Social Media … Luis talks about the benefits of social media to him in his work at IBM. “From there onwards, a couple of weeks later, I moved back to Spain, to Gran Canaria, to be more precise, where I have been living, and working remotely, ever since. And this is where social computing kicks in, because right then I realised that if I wanted to make it work in my new situation I needed to be out there: visible; easy to reach and connect with; always willing to help and share my knowledge with those who needed it (And with those who may need it at a later time, too!) in an open and public way; willing to share my expertise, experience and know-how across the board with those who I know, and those who I may not know yet; willing to feed those resources with knowledge and expertise that otherwise would have remained in my own head, or my computer, for that matter, and therefore with very little access for others to enjoy.More

OI Software nGage … OI Software released nGage, a social collaboration add-on for SharePoint. “nGage is a rich, social application that integrates specifically with Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007 and transforms your intranet into a platform for universal Employee Engagement. nGage brings highly viral social networking functionality, strong support for collaborative innovation and a striking reputation management system. And its reporting facilities allow leaders to track usage/behavioural trends – and Internal Communicators to celebrate an organization having great conversations with itself.” (and hopefully with customers too). More

Five Metrics of Intranet Success … Five indications that your intranet is successful: (1) employees use it, (2) it saves money, (3) it saves time, (4) it enables cross-organizatonal communication, and (5) it makes money. More

Other Things
– Jim’s pulling back on Facebook and Twitter, and explains his reasons.
– Review of the recent GTD Summit by Chris at Financial Times.
– Interested in Google Apps at work? Google is holding some roundtable discussions in April in San Francisco and Mountain View to discuss.
– It’s easy to lose track of time when online, and forget the important things.

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