The Facebook Phenomenon
According to a recent Forrester Research survey, 28 percent of enterprises
with 500 or more employees have some form of social networking initiative, while
20 percent are considering it. Behind these figures: the runaway popularity
of social networking services like MySpace, Facebook and LinkedIn. The buzz
around these sites jumped recently, after Facebook announced it would open its
APIs to developers.
What's at stake here? Potentially, a lot. Facebook has a huge and growing audience
that includes a rapidly expanding business clientele. Apps linked into the Facebook
platform using its APIs can be immediately accessed and leveraged by Facebook
users, removing much of the friction in delivering services across organizations.
RDN Executive Editor Jeffrey Schwartz caught up with Burton Group Principal
Analyst Mike Gotta. According to Gotta, major platform players like Microsoft,
IBM and BEA are well aware of Facebook's appeal and are working to provide social
networking systems. He says the key issue retarding Facebook adoption (compared
to maturing software like IBM Lotus Connections and BEA AquaLogic Pages) is
the lack of robust policy management for managing roles, security and workflow.
From a developer perspective, Gotta warns dev managers to carefully consider
issues related to information gathering and dissemination. He also notes another
challenge when it comes to developing social networking applications.
"Designing social applications is different than designing business applications,"
Gotta said. "It's not like you're processing a transaction or the typical
CRM, ERP or line-of-business application."
Is your company looking to deploy a social networking platform as a way to
link individuals and streamline information flow? E-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Posted by Michael Desmond on 10/17/2007 at 1:15 PM