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Business Management

Karthik Padmanabhan (India) - Social Business Market Opportunity

Just as e-business changed business forever, now, ten years later, we find ourselves at another junction: the coming-of-age for Social Business - as social computing, policies, governance and cultures are integrated into enterprise design.

There is tremendous opportunity for organizations to transform into Social Businesses. This is where a social framework can create new ways to enable sales forces, new ways to discover expertise, new ways to understand your organization's culture, new ways to establish brand trust with your customers, and much more. Becoming a social business can help an organization deepen customer relationships, generate new ideas faster, and enable a more effective workforce. IBM is not the only company talking about Social Business, Social Computing or Social Networking. But as you hear about the IBM approach to Social Business, you'll notice that our thinking isn't document centric. It's people centric.

The critical turning point for Social Business is the realization that the collective knowledge of these networks of people can provide business with a unique, competitive advantage.

As these global networks of people become instrumented, interconnected and intelligent, dramatic shifts are taking place. The way employees interact, relationships form, decisions are made, work is accomplished and goods are purchased, is fundamentally changing. Consumers now wield unprecedented power over how brands are perceived. Crowdsourcing is altering competitive landscapes by levelling the intelligence playing field at an extraordinary rate. As a result of all this, the world finds itself at a transformative point with regard to how business is done. The explosion of mobile devices and new cloud delivery models have paved a unique way for industries to transform the new era of Social Business:


• IBM's 2010 CHRO Study indicates that 57% of companies who invested in Social Business outperformed their peers
• IDC estimates the market opportunity for Social Business software will grow by a factor of 2 billion by 2014
• The burgeoning mobile workforce is expected to reach more than 1.19 billion by 2013, nearly 1 trillion Internet-connected devices will be in the market by 2012, generating 20 times more mobile data by 2015
• Gartner predicts that social media will be a support tool among 40% of the top 1,000 companies.

In India, we are seeing increasing demand from enterprises to use Social Business. Especially in the areas of insurance agent automation and enhancing their productivity, Auto makers and other distribution oriented Cos are looking to adopt Social Business to enhance their experience with their vast dealer network. We are seeing financial institutions in India incorporating Social Business to build their brand loyalty and effectiveness with their high net worth customers. We have IT Cos using Social Business within their enterprise to increase employee productivity; using tacit knowledge management and helping improve employee motivation and their retention.

Karthik Padmanabhan is a country manager for India/South Asia at the IBM Software Group. To learn more about IBM Social Business visit here.

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