Research studies have repeatedly emphasized that good IT governance is a result of effective leadership at the highest levels (Lallana, 2010) . Social Media implementation in enterprises is like any technology initiatives require a leadership support to be successful. Leaders commitment can bring the initiative together, establish it as a priority, and drive it to successful completion (Seven, 2001) .However, adopting technological innovation generate challenges to organizations because it doesn’t only addresses changes in technology but also require the organization to change the way its runs its business in terms of processes, workflows, policies, procedures and structure (Serour & Henderson-Sellers, 2002)
To accomplish that, CIOs will be the best candidates. It is not an easy task for CIOs to have board members, CEO, senior executives on board to support the use of Enterprise 2.0 for internal and external communications. Campaigning for such task is a long, tedious work for so many reasons like dealing with business managers who are often less IT savvy. As well , CIOs will always need to be well equipped and convincing to provide answers to ‘What is in it for me!’ & ‘Is it a Risk free thing’ type of questions.
However, It is not difficult to answer the benefits and cost effective questions since most social media networks are relatively free and the uses of social media seem endless. For example , It brings firms closer to their customers, communication ,knowledge sharing , project management…act. On the other hand, the risk question is the real concern. Security, loss of control, impact on reputation, information
reliability, and productivity impact are among the high profile issues in using Enterprise social networks.
There is no simple solution to manage these risks .Literature shows that many firms have its way of handling some of these issues. For example, Phoebe Venkat a Global Communications Senior Manager at Tyco Fire Protection states that to help firms with control issue, it is better to have ‘Know when to guide, when to police’
‘ As an admin of firm Social Network I come across some impolite improper posts. Just as I was about to fire off a manifesto, I paused and told myself, “let the community respond…don’t speak for everyone.” Within a few minutes, the responses started flying in. The best thing? The responses were mature, helpful and positive. I was so proud of our network. ‘
However, the most common mechanism to ease these risks is using policy. The need for effective policy for Enterprise 2.0 applications has never been more important in today’s changing workplace and technology (workplace policies and procedures). Organizations will need polices as an accountability system to protect themselves and its employees against any legal liabilities issues. As well, policies will help organization in:
- Providing guidelines on action to be taken to use social network apps
- Clarify user’s rights and responsibilities.
- foster stability and continuity
- assessing performance and establishing accountability
- Saving time, when you face a new problem that could be handled through an existing policy.
- Reducing conversation clashes.
- Reducing network security issues by maintaining safe \ acceptable use \ best practices in using social network apps to prevent malicious code, viruses, Trojans from ever attacking its network.
Moreover, conducting training programs and creating educational videos would also contribute to alleviate these risks.
Finally, from previous experience, business managers usually will hesitate when it comes to make decision about such emergent technology. Thus, proposing a risk analysis and risk management plan would be essential to have them on board.
For now , I will leave you with this video ’ Managing the risk of social media in hospitals’ and next week, will talk more on managing risks of Enterprise Social networks.
See you then Abdul ,,
Lallana, E. (2010). ICT for Development policy, process and governance: Briefing Note 2. United Nations Asian and Pacific Training Centre for Information and Communication Technology for Development (APCICT).
Serour, M., & Henderson-Sellers, B. (2002). The role of organizational culture on the adoption and diffusion of software engineering process: an empirical study. Proceedings of the Adoption and Diffusion of IT in an Environment of Critical Changes, IFIP TG8, 6, 76-88.
Seven, E. (2001). Government Leadership Milestones. Janet Caldow, Director, Institute For Electronic Government, IBM Corporation, United Kingdom.