IBM Study: Investments in Social Technologies Climb, While Management Struggles with Uptick

    IBM Study: Investments in Social Technologies Climb, While Management
                            Struggles with Uptick

Adoption Supports Core Business Functions; Cultural Shift Needed for
Widespread Use

PR Newswire

ARMONK, N.Y., Nov. 16, 2012

ARMONK, N.Y., Nov. 16,2012 /PRNewswire/ -- A new report by IBM (NYSE: IBM)
finds that while companies are increasing their social technology investments,
middle management leaders are struggling to embrace these capabilities as part
of their day-to-day work. IBM's survey of 1,160 business and IT professionals
shows that while 46 percent of the organizations increased their investments
in social technologies in 2012, only 22 percent believed that managers are
prepared to incorporate social tools and approaches into their daily


Despite intentions to rapidly accelerate social initiatives, many companies
are still figuring out whether real returns can be gained on social
investments. Two-thirds of respondents were not sure they sufficiently
understood the impact that social technologies would have on their
organizations over the next three years.

According to a new IBM report ( entitled, "The
Business of Social Business: What Works and How It's Done," companies at the
forefront of this trend are doing more than developing a presence on major
social platforms. A social business embeds social technologies into core
business processes, and then applies the technologies to drive customer-facing
activities such as lead generation, sales and post-sales service.

"Businesses are struggling to make sense of the vast amount of data generated
from social networks, said Kevin Custis, Vice President and Global Leader
Social Business and Mobility Services, IBM Global Business Services. "To
transform a vision into a reality, executive leadership must guide middle
management on the value of being a social business, and build company-wide
support for the use of social practices  across organizational functions."

As demonstrated in the study, the key to accelerating widespread adoption lies
in an organization's ability to build social business expertise among
employees, while encouraging behavioral changes that may influence a wider
cultural shift. However, only one-quarter of companies believe they are fully
prepared to address the cultural changes that are associated with this

The IBM report suggests that for organizations to evolve into social
enterprises, some basic groundwork must be laid. At the most basic level,
management must provide an infrastructure for engagement -- setting up forums,
teamrooms and collaborative spaces. Once in place, social practices should be
integrated into day-to-day work activities. For example, the use of blog posts
and activity streams can positively accentuate project management tasks. The
organization must also create the capability to understand where and how data
generation could benefit the enterprise. Finally, management must teach
employees how to collaborate effectively with individuals outside of the
organization's boundaries, using social business methods and tools.

With the effective use of social technologies, organizations can integrate and
analyze massive amounts of data generated from people, devices and sensors and
more easily align these insights to business processes to make faster, more
accurate business decisions. By gaining deeper insights in customer and market
trends and employees' sentiment, businesses can uncover critical patterns to
not only react swiftly to market shifts, but predict the effect of future
actions. According to Forrester Research, the market opportunity for social
enterprise apps is expected to grow at a rate of 61 percent through 2016*.

To learn more about how forward thinkers are focused on harnessing the value
social business in their companies, register to attend Connect 2013 at

About IBM
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* Source: Social Enterprise Apps Redefine Collaboration, "Forrester Research,
Inc., November 30, 2011

Pasha Ray Dahncke
IBM Media Relations
Cell: 646-342-4013

Karen Lilla
IBM Media Relations
Phone: 1-617-693-8115
Mobile: 1-617-828-2258


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