A social enterprise is an internal social network. Think business version of Facebook where all colleagues are able to collaborate in real-time on documents and projects. It is a truly collaborative environment to service and support customers and prospects and make better use of employee time. No more waiting for email or hoping someone will pick up the phone. It takes away the geographic boundaries and massively increases business efficiency.
Made possible through cloud computing, businesses are extending this familiar model to establish a similar synergy between their employees, customers and business partners — thus, employing a new social enterprise.
The value of the social enterprise is simple. It allows customers to get closer to their favorite brands, offers them a voice when they have something to say (good or bad) and encourages them to make better buying decisions. For companies, it magnifies the voice of the customer, allows them to identify macro trends, improve their customer service, maximize sales through new channels and even improve employee satisfaction.
The social enterprise is a strategy, not simply a single system or idea. It impacts an organization’s culture, processes, systems and bottom line. Leveraging social media in the enterprise is new to many, but time is ticking for those who haven’t developed a social enterprise strategy — chances are competitors have a head start. The cost of not taking action could be high.