7 Steps to Estimate how much will Your Intranet really cost you

7 Steps to Estimate how much will Your Intranet really cost you

How much will your intranet project really cost you?

How Do You Measure SharePoint – Metrics for Business Users

How Do You Measure SharePoint – Metrics for Business Users

In-depth article on how to measure SharePoint success from a business perspective. Recommended.

Miscellaneous Links For 2009-07-11

Miscellaneous Links For 2009-07-11:

If you can handle some academical ranting, this quite long article deals with the vagueness that is inherent in Knowledge Management theory and practices:

Finally, these bookmarklets make web browsing much, much easier:

Enterprise 2.0 Links for 2009-06-30

Enterprise 2.0 Links for 2009-06-30, dealing more or less with adoption issues:

These two links are also noteworthy regarding the debate about Enterprise 2.0 ROI:

On a related note, two more scholarly insights:

Links for today: Enterprise 2.0 rollouts, Intranet ROI, IA Mistakes

Links for today:

  • Get me to the parts store in time: A short article about what really matters when it comes to much-hyped Enterprise 2.0 rollouts [Link]
  • Some small hints for calculating Intranet ROI [Link]
  • Jakob Nielsen: Top 10 Information Architecture Mistakes [Link]

Intranet and Enterprise 2.0 ROI

There seems to be quite an ongoing discussion about the ROI of Enterprise 2.0 applications, which typically range from trying to define exactly what Enterprise 2.0 is and, more important, how to measure and rate its value. Especially the latter is complicated, because we are dealing with a mixture of financial and technical changes coupled with more ’soft‘ changes that relate more to the social structure and communications formations of the enterprise than to hard and easy measurable facts.

I have recently pointed out that a solution would be to establish a set of sociological approaches, and i am not alone with this opinion – over on the ThoughtFarmer blog there is an interesting article that integrates some elements from network theory in a proposal of how to measure the value of an emerging Enterprise 2.0 landscape.

A Quality Metric for Enterprise 2.0?

Again, I have to come back to what I have written about the ROI of Enterprise 2.0 applications. Here and here I phrased an idea of using sociological tool sets to grasp the outcomes and possible benefits of using blogs, wikis, social software, and other so-called Web 2.0 apps in organizations. Granted, the main organizational form in Germany is very rigid and hierarchical, and might pose quite an obstacle to overcome in this regard, so I really dig this outline of a quality metric for Enterprise 2.0 that was posted on the blog of Ethan Yarbrough. It’s more a rough sketch and by no means a detailed strategy yet, but it neatly incorporates a mix of quantitative and qualitative measures, which can yield, as I have said before, reliable and valid results.

Enterprise 2.0 ROI revisited

As i mentioned here before, i think that a sociological perspective might be able to shed light on the much-debated Enterprise 2.0 & ROI-topic. Well, so how could a starting point for this approach look? This list of social software usage offers some promising hints. Granted, these examples are all formulated in a way that measuring hard  figures might seem nearly impossible at first, but you have to keep in mind that social interaction between employees can also yield a measurable revenue – even if it is only one employee posing a question.

Enterprise 2.0 and the ROI Mystery

Apart from individual use or hype that hardly relates to your average company, the value and ROI of Enterprise 2.0 tools in organizations is still questionable. The main problems can be found outlined in these articles:

  • Dion Hinchcliffe: How to measure the ROI of Enterprise 2.0 tools [Link]
  • Also take a look at his slides from the Web 2.0 Expo [Link, via]
  • A more realistic and pragmatic viewpoint comes from Dennis Howlett [Link]

What makes me wonder is that, coming from a sociological background, i don’t see any insurmountable problems in measuring, and consequently determining, ROI of so-called ’soft‘ correlations. The social sciences have developed a strong and proven tool set for exactly this type of phenomena. Of course, the adapting of these tool sets to the enterprise could require more resources than management is willing to provide, but i think that, on a more manageable level, sound results can be found by even small teams and small initiatives.