The consulting firm Booz | Allen |Hamilton gets a lot of well deserved attention for theiruse of Enterprise 2.0 to extend the usefulness of their intranet, Hello.bah. They’re mainstays at the Enterprise 2.0 conferences and one of the great success stories.
Among the many things I’ve heard them say to explain why they’ve been so successful is that they built their solutions around people.
That sounds right, but what exactly does it mean? I think it means don’t do what I did.
When I first heard about Enterprise 2.0 and the social computing aspects of it in particular I got very excited about the information sharing possibilities it presented for my company. We have a distributed workforce and anything that can help shed light for our employees on what work is happening in other parts of the company immediately gets my attention.
This was in 2007. We had a new SharePoint intranet in place and I decided I wanted to add social communities for employees to connect with each other and share information. I called them the Competency Communities.
I called them that because within our employee population we had, at the time, 6 main professional competencies: Project Management, Business Intelligence, Content Management, Web Development, Marketing Management and Operations Support. It was my idea that by giving these distinct groups of employees a collaborative space in which they could interact with others of their kind through discussion boards, document sharing and link sharing the company could benefit. Expertise would be shared. Questions would be answered. Tacit knowledge would become explicit knowledge and would become a durable resource for everyone.