Web 2.0 'not all about young people': analyst

Web 2.0 'not all about young people': analyst

CIO focus must shift from ROI

CIOs in the enterprise must realise Web 2.0 is not simply a tool to lure Gen-Y employees, and must be made an important priority in the workplace.

Ovum analyst, Steve Hodgkinson, addressed a group of IT leaders in Sydney this week where he spoke about why Web 2.0 is becoming more integrated across organisations and changing the way people work.

“Many arguments around Web 2.0 centre on the idea of a new generation is coming into the workplace, but this is a very overrated notion. One of the myths is that ‘it’s all about young people’ but that’s not true. What you observe is the best use of the technology is made by older people,” he said.

Hodgkinson warns employees must be trained in Web 2.0 tools like Twitter and Facebook in order for wide-spread adoption to occur.

“Most of the magic around Web 2.0 is serendipitous. People have the misconception that staff don’t need training to use these applications. If no training takes place, the general rule is 1 per cent of people actively contribute while 90 per cent lurk around,” he said.

He went on to say a new approach must be taken in order for the collaborative nature of Web 2.0 to succeed in the workplace.

“It’s all about behaviour patterns. Using these technologies means people have to change the way they work and the nature of collaboration. It’s getting started and having a good reason for changing their behaviour. It’s about changing small behaviour and habits. There has to be something to encourage them to come back regularly,” Hodgkinson said.

Hodgkinson advised CIOs to approach a Web 2.0 deployment without focusing on a ROI and instead foster enthusiasm, which is vital.

“It’s more important to get on with the project because the evolution is built from the collaboration of the project. It’s more important to create passion than to create structure.”

“There’s a lot of fuss around ROI, which is difficult if you choose to make Web 2.0 a large part of your business. The biggest problem is not ROI, it’s a return on engagement. How do you get people to come back? The ROI will follow on from this. It’s all about the systems,” he said.

The news comes as a panel discussion of prominent CIOs in Sydney last week discussed why developing social media policy in a workplace is not exclusively an IT issue.

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Tags social mediacollaborationWeb 2.0ovumenterprise 2.0social media policy

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