What’s the ROI on this?

I recently read a colleague’s post “return on investment of social technology implementations” where return on investment (ROI) is converted into monetary terms based on the Forrester Consulting report on the Economic Impact of  IBM Social Collaboration Tools.  In reading the same report a  few different lines attracted my attention. These were not the ones highlighting monetary gains but statements such as “More than 12,000 photos have been uploaded. Most of the information entered is related to the person’s area of expertise, product involvement, sales area” or “the company indicates that the “cultural” journey of using social tools within the business is just beginning“.

These two lines really interested me because the first highlights the intangible value that is be created. The most expensive assets of any organisation are it’s people because of the knowledge and the untapped potential they have in their heads. Capturing that as most Information Mangers will testify to, is gold.

The second link mentioned is the enabler that if missing will squash any potential positive ROI and that is a culture receptive to change.

Albert Einstein is to have said, “Not everything that counts can be measured.  Not everything that can be measured counts.”  In my opinion, there’s sufficient evidence to suggest that Albert Einstein knew what he was talking about – and that  social technology is worth the investment.

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Is Gov2.0 getting traction? (Social media monitoring)

This week I was interested to see how the Gov 2.o brand is being discussed within the social community.

Firstly to examine some social media monitoring tools.

Quick scan of the market produced a list of many products; as usual free to pay by month. So what are the free one like and what is available? In no time at all I had 69 free social media monitoring tools at my finger tips.

I selected 3 to examine; socialmention, addict-o-matic and icerocket.

Socialmention monitors 80+ social media properties directly including: Twitter, Facebook, FriendFeed, YouTube, Digg, Google etc

ScreenHunter_14 Sep. 23 13.02It provides guidance into:

strength: the likelihood that your brand is being discussed in social media.

sentiment:  the ratio of mentions that are generally positive to those that are generally negative


passion: likelihood that individuals talking about your brand will do so repeatedly.

And reach: the range of influence. It is the number of unique authors referencing your brand.

For those with a visual preference like me it also provides Graphs of sentiment and also the top commentators.

This tool was mainly picking up US commentary.

So next I tried addict-o-matic.  Not as many feeds as Socialmention. Nice layout showing what was found by each.

ScreenHunter_14 Sep. 23 13.01

Surprisingly though I had nothing being picked up on twitter.

So I thought I would try Australian Gov 2.0.

Still nothing appearing under twitter, YouTube as a source now disappears. Back to what I had; YouTube returns but they are mostly American or Russian.

What about Icerocket? Starting to get somewhere. I’m now picking up Australian Gov 2.0 blogs, Twitter is extremely active although nothing from Australian sources.

ScreenHunter_14 Sep. 23 13.49  ScreenHunter_14 Sep. 23 13.53

Ok. What this all mean? Firstly get to know what the monitoring tool is doing.  I personally know that there is lots of  discussions happening within the Gov 2.0 linkedIn space but this information is not being reported by these tools.

Therefore as someone who is very interested in this domain, I was honestly starting to feel disillusioned with Gov 2.0, that it was not gaining traction within Australia. However, in reality many discussion are taking place but they are not being presented effectively. For Gov 2.0 to gain traction it will require leadership in how these collaborations are being managed;  not only from the custodian AGIMO – Gov2.0 but also from all of us citizens who are passionate about improving these services.

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Professional Services Sector – Accenture’s role

When reading the Mckinsey Global Institute (MGI) publication: The social economy  regarding the Professional Services Sector,  MGI alluded to the huge potential growth in value ( 243-360 billion dollars) that could be added by social technologies. The report focusses on law firms and suggests slow adoption but what about the management consulting domain? What are the big players doing?

Accenture is a global management consulting, technology services and outsourcing company, with more than 223,000 people serving clients in more than 120 countries.  You have the standard wiki, Facebook and twitter but what is different?

MGI discussed recruitment;  Accenture created a social recruiting channel. The significance of this that Accenture “practice what they preach”. They are always saying to know your target audience. Here it is millennials; so they created a recruitment app based on Facebook and gaming.

MGI also discussed marketing; Accenture Interactive – Marketing Services. Sure most social media consultants can say they have a marketing strategy; locally, some could even say globally. Accenture march out success stories on the large scale; Proctor & Gamble, Subaru and Sony

But the feature that appealed to me the most was Accenture Interactive. Why?

Through its social business components, the client receives a holistic social media strategy that provides guidance on:

  • Interactive Organizational Models
  • Social Business maturity models
  • Governance processes for social technology
  • Risk Mitigation
  • Response guidelines etc

and that is critical to professional service organisations because you rely on long term relationships that are built on trust.

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DesignGov – Business and Government interactions project update

Yesterday DesignGov’s CEO Jane Treadwell released
the project findings report and the associated Prototyping Prospectus which
outlines the next steps for the project.

summary poster which outlines the key findings,  a proposed framework for improving interactions, and five concepts to be further explored that could contribute to dramatically improved interactions was also published.

More detail is available via Jane’s blog post

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How can Enterprise 2.0 help our Not for Profit organsiations?

Crossing the corner to work today  I am approached on both sides of the road by people asking me to support charities. Nothing unusual, in fact it seems like this is common practice on just about every corner in the central business district and I’m not alone in thinking this; “What Charity was That?” Lance Bethune

I started to wonder how these Not-For-Profit (NFP)s are coping today? What are their issues  and could Enterprise 2.0 assist them in their worthy endeavours?

Instead of selecting just one NFP organisation, I decided to look at their common issues and biggest challenges. The  best site for this in Australia is the Australian Council Of Social Service (ACOSS), fortunately they had also just released their annual Australian Community Sector Survey (ACSS) 2013.  The ACSS also happens to be the only annual national survey collecting data about the non-government, not-for-profit community services and welfare sector.

The three most significant issues facing the sector were:

  • Underfunding of services by government (58%);
  • Funding uncertainty (51%); and
  • Challenges for small organisations to remain viable (36%).

Closely followed by unmet client demand for services (32%). Respondents also reported high levels of support for the idea that NFPs should prove they are making a positive impact (71%).

This year the ACSS also had one new addition that had never been previously reported;  the Services’ use of social media.

ScreenHunter_14 Sep. 10 20.51

The statistic that surprised me was that 24% of these NFP had no social media presence and an even higher percentage for the question relating to social media usage for campaigning and advocacy.

ScreenHunter_14 Sep. 10 20.53

With all this information at my fingertips I then decided to re-examine this data through different glasses; filtered by levers  that were identified within the Mckinsey Global Institute publication: The social economy hoping to find recommendations that could be utilised to address challenges faced by social-sector organisations.

ScreenHunter_14 Sep. 10 13.41With 3 issues focussing on funding, the opportunity presented by social media to mobilize resources, both money and personnel could be the social sector organisation’s panacea. Why? Because through social media can precise target donors and volunteers; people who are likely to believe in and willingly engage in the organisations vision / cause  and do this cheaply and on a large scale. In fact Australia has much to learn from our friends across the ditch; New Zealand.

ScreenHunter_14 Sep. 10 21.38

Another issue was the inability to meet client demand, to solve peoples problems etc. Two social media levers can assist here:

  1. Collecting information and insights. Here the power of social media has been verified by aid groups who have been able to respond quickly to natural disasters or other crises using these tools.
  2. The other technique is crowdsourcing; harnessing the collective power of large groups of people to solve problems and importantly to mobilize volunteers with the donors and volunteers contributing their expertise to assist in solving the problems.

Social media is also the perfect tool for gathering information regarding how well the organisation is performing; making a positive impact.

Below are more examples of social media usage in the social sector:

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New IBM report on crowdsourcing and government released

The IBM Center for the Business of Government have released the report, Using Crowdsourcing In Government (PDF 3.4mb).”This report categorizes some government crowdsourcing cases into a four-part, problem-based typology, encouraging government leaders and public administra­tors to consider these open problem-solving techniques as a way to engage the public […]

Knowledge Discovery and Management: Collecting knowledge reported by an online community, such as the reporting of earth tremors or potholes to a central source.

Distributed Human Intelligence Tasking: Distributing “micro-tasks” that require human intelligence to solve, such as transcribing handwritten historical documents into electronic files

Broadcast Search: Broadcasting a problem-solving challenge widely on the Internet and providing an award for its solution, such as NASA’s prize for an algorithm to predict solar flares 

Peer-Vetted Creative Production: creating peer-vetted solutions, where an online community both proposes possible solutions and is empowered to collectively choose among them

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Understand communication channel needs to craft your customer service strategy

Forrester report examines alignment of customer channels and customer service strategy.  This report entitled, Understand communication channel needs to craft your customer service strategy states “chat with live agents and social media, is exploding as consumers expect relevant and seamless customer service across channels. This report helps eBusiness and channel strategy professionals supporting customer service operations to align communication channels to customer demand and break down the siloed implementations of customer service channels in order to appeal to the majority of today’s consumers.”

Key Points:

  • Older customers are least tolerant to friction in customer service interactions.
  • A strong segment of Generations X, Y, and Z prefer online services
  • Social support explodes among younger online consumers. 
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Public servants and social media policies

Travelling home on the train tonight I listened to people in front of me discuss posts upon their Facebook pages and I started to ponder the differences between Private Enterprise  and Public Service, their employees and the implications of social media on both.

Sure, most organisations that are moving from the traditional brick & mortar model to the click & mortar model or are fully online have identified the benefits and risks associated with social media.


Social media give the organisation / agency the opportunity to:

  • Influence citizen’s / client’s behaviour – for example, encouraging people to interact  with it online.
    • For a government agency being responsible and accountable for spending public money, delivery of services online is far less expensive than other channels.
    • The same cost efficiency also influences private enterprise.
  •  Engage with citizens by seeking their feedback and opinions, allowing them to ask questions and create discussion. With a focus on provide better quality services through user centred  design techniques, Social media ( such as closed forums) can be used for new product feedback, shortening the product development time.
    • This is also fundamental to improving products for commercial reasons.

But with the next item I thought about,  I saw a difference between private enterprise and public service and that was a duty to the community to educate.

  • Educate citizens not only about their responsibilities  and obligations but also educate them about their entitlements.


We have all probably heard, read or seen many of the horror stories that abound in regards to the dangers of social media:

  1. Nestle’s palm oil
  2. Domino’s Pizza food preparation disaster

This is why organisation’s today place so much importance in their Social Media Policy; Government agencies are no different.

What about the employees?? Whilst the people in front of me openly discussed, laughed and swore about political comments on their Facebook pages I drifted back to what I had read from public agencies: Department of Finance, and 1 line returned to me so vividly:

“upholding the APS Values and the integrity and good reputation of the APS”.

So I was wondering with all public servants obligated to abide by the  APS values and code of conduct do you think Government agencies need Social Media Policies that are less restrictive then private enterprise?


I would love to hear your opinions?

Posted in Future Public Servant skill profile, Social Media usage | Tagged , | 2 Comments

What will the workplace resemble in 2030?

It’s (almost) all about me: workplace 2030: built for us, Deloitte, July 2013. Ideas will move between people, not institutions. In a borderless knowledge economy, powered by big data and global networks, insight will be the new currency and the concept that ‘time is money’ will be left behind. People will be working more in the cloud of data, and in virtual relationships that span the globe. Future workplaces will be designed to connect and facilitate; they will operate more like interconnected hubs and allow people to select from a variety of work spaces that will suit changing needs and wants.

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Benefits and value associated with implementing Enterprise 2.0 using the Social Technology value levers published by McKinsey Global Institute, 2012.

I am writing this today as I am hoping to receive feedback in regards to how other agencies or organisations are deriving benefits and values through the usage of their Enterprise 2.0 technologies. Whilst these blogs are predominately aimed towards Government Agencies, especially those operating in the Whole of Government domain, please also submit comments regarding benefits / values being derived by private industry that will add value to this piece.

I recently read the report from the McKinsey Global Institute; The Social economy: Unlocking value and productivity through social technologies, 2012 and started thinking about how this relates to my current project.

Firstly, how MGI defines social technologies:

ScreenHunter_14 Aug. 25 22.37

And what are the 10 ways social media can add value across the organisation?

ScreenHunter_14 Aug. 25 23.03

Two ways we are gaining value that also support MGI’s findings is as follows:

  1. Using social Technology to improve intra /- or inter organisational  collaboration and communication.

My project provides a capability that support one higher level process step within our 12 Enterprise Transactional patterns. However it is a key capability that affects all others down stream. As such, many people need to find out about our processes and how changes can affect them.

Our processes are fully document within a repository based modelling tool that provides web based publishing.  This application has a meta-model based on the Business Motivation Model so we can show how our process are contributing to the organisation’s vision via line of sight traceability.

It also means we can link out to all the relevant technical documentation within SharePoint as well as linking to our procedures and policies. People can then place comments or ask questions relevant to each process,  IT system, requirement, measurement etc

What benefits am I finding?

From a communication and collaboration perspective; clarification and consistency in design. Key stakeholders are now referring to it in design discussions. There is also a better understanding of the problems, teams are collaborating more because they have a consistent view of the problem and how it could effect them,  which then leads to greater evidence based design and ultimately better decision-making.

How does this influence Whole of Government? Our processes conforms to the Business Process Interoperability Framework (BPIF).

2. Customer (Citizen) service is being improved through content being provided via YouTube and twitter freeing up staff who would normally be answering questions on the phone in call centres.

I’ve added some related information below that may also assist the conversations.

Related articles

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