Social media is indispensable from the organizational environment. Where people collaborate interaction exists and since society’s large-scale adoption of the internet, social media shaped online conversations about, with and within organizations. Social media is a fact of life; it is no longer the question whether an organization should use social media, but how they should use it. However, research by Gartner shows that most social media initiatives fail to achieve participation from the community or to achieve any meaningful purpose. So why do some organizations fail in using social media, while others – for instance KLM – are extremely successful in it? I think because many organizations do not understand the importance of adequately incorporating social media initiatives within their organizational structure. They do not know how to use social media in the context of their enterprise and become a ‘Social Enterprise’.
Designing the Social Enterprise
I strongly believe in a sort of ‘manufacturability’ of organizations. With manufacturability I mean designing the organization(al change) by the use of business models, enterprise architecture and process management. These are the fundamentals of delivering customer value in an effective and efficient way (although more than just these disciplines is required). I think that social media should be subject to these disciplines too. Maybe social media is not that ‘manufacturable’ as a business process or architecture, in the end it is part of a ‘social system’ about which we should carefully think why and how we participate in it. It is indeed the field in which most of our customers (internal or external to our organization) are active. That’s why social media offers us great opportunities and hazards for creating and delivering customer value.
IDEA for the Social Enterprise
In the consortium project ‘New Models for the Social Enterprise’ we designed ‘IDEA for the Social Enterprise’. IDEA is an abbreviation for the Interactive Design and Engineering Approach. It offers a method – with its roots in design thinking – to incorporate social media in your organization. By several diverging and converging phases we propose coherent instruments which help you to understand the value of social media in relation to your business model, the related business processes and the customers.
To conclude: whether you like it or not, social media is one of the trends we cannot deny from a perspective of organizational design. Social media has become an important channel for creating and delivering customer value. In order to use social media in delivering optimal customer value, I am convinced that organizations need a good IDEA about how to integrate social media in their enterprise!
If you have any questions or interest in IDEA or our research project ‘New models for the Social Enterprise’, feel free to contact me at email@example.com