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Home » News, Social Business, Social Media News

Social business: What are companies really doing?

Submitted by on December 18, 2012 – 10:41 amNo Comment

Yesterday we looked at a snapshot infographic demonstrating the disruptions posed by social paradigm shifts within business operations, indicating that while many companies understand the benefits social business offers, for a number of reasons they’re reluctant to pursue them.

MIT Sloan Management Review and Deloitte have published a report that expounds on these benefits, applying real-world case studies to social business functions, and stemming the tide of concern widely felt for this increasing trend.

Social business: What are companies really doing?’ looks at the application of social business in a wide variety of contexts, across a number of industries.

Some of its key findings:

Social business matters today, but will matter more tomorrow

Just over half (52%) of respondents believe social business is important or somewhat important to business today, but 86% of managers feel that social business will be important or somewhat important in three years. This does pose the question, why aren’t leaders pursuing social business now?

Leaders are enthusiastic, but lack metrics to prove value

  • Leadership and a clear vision were cited most frequently as ‘critical’ to the adoption of social software. Similarly, a lack of management support is cited as the biggest barrier to adoption.
  • The majority of respondents claimed that they do not measure their social software use.

Size matters

  • Respondents from large and small companies were twice as likely to say that social business is important to their business than respondents from mid-size companies.
  • Over time, the gap between small, midsize and larger companies may narrow; when asked about the importance of social business to their organization three years from now there was little difference in the way these groups responded.

Media and tech are leading the way

  • Social business is thriving in at least two industry sectors: entertainment, media and publishing, and IT and technology. In media industries, 74.9% of managers say social software is important or somewhat important. In tech industries, the figure is 65.9% (interesting that the tech industry – the creating force behind social business – is less ‘on board’ than other sectors).
  • Energy and utility company managers are least likely to say social software is important today (just 7.1%), but encouragingly more (46.8%) concede it will be important in three years.

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