For the fifth consecutive year IBM has been named leader in social software by technology industry analyst IDC. It's very reassuring for people like us who use the IBM social software suite exclusively to run our business that we remain at the cutting edge. We see why IBM is so highly rated in this market every day and it's occasionally worth reminding ourselves of that. We do sometimes get sidetracked by looking at things which aren't exactly how we want them to be; we have to acknowledge that social collaboration software is still a "work-in-progress" and that IBM is at the forefront of that. There are some great features today but in twelve months time we will have moved on again. The world of work is changing and those who don't start adapting to that will be left behind.
Craig Hayman, IBM's General Manager Industry Cloud Solutions, has neatly summed up the change that social software is bringing about ...
"Social networking has become a sweeping societal and economic phenomenon. Information is being created and shared at unprecedented rates; the views and activities of consumers are more accessible and actionable; and organizations are working differently, functioning with greater transparency than ever before.
Social is fuelling the emergence of a knowledge economy – and people can rapidly learn and influence others in entirely new ways. And it’s penetrating the business world."
IBM Connections or IBM SmartCloud Engage (the cloud equivalent) provide a comprehensive range of applications which are now beginning to show real benefits to users. It does require a rethink on how organisations run their affairs. In our view that is a bullet that simply has to be bitten now. The alternative, playing catch-up, could put you are a serious competitive disadvantage in your market.
What makes IBM different in the social software sector, and why we recommend them to our clients, is that they walk the talk. This is not just about technology. The issues around implementing the technology are human ones and IBM have 450,000 users who provide pretty regular feedback! IBM is its own case study and this provides an unrivalled knowledge to drive decision on the software. There is plenty more to come from IBM in this market and we look forward to sharing it with you in the coming months.