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Social Interactions and the Enterprise: ITEXPO West Video with Saba
By Susan J. Campbell, TMCnet Contributing Editor
How social has your organization become in 2011? Are you leveraging key collaboration tools in-house, or are you taking your brand to social media interactions and promoting your offers directly to your clients on Facebook (News - Alert) or Twitter?
Saba is one company promoting the use of social interactions for the enterprise and TMC’s Group Editorial Director Erik Linask sat down with Milind Pansare (News - Alert), senior director of Product Marketing at Saba at ITEXPO West 2011. The interview was captured in this video.
As for the latest in the social enterprise market, Pansare shared that very recently social came back on the forefront for a number of organization, if it hasn’t been already. Companies like Saba (News - Alert) have actually been meeting with a lot of traction in the industry.
Social is not new in the enterprise, but some of the software available keeps companies on the fence as to whether it is a good thing or a not. Pansare noted that Gartner (News - Alert) just came out with a Magic Quadrant for Social Software in the Workplace and Saba is in one of the leading six windows, considered a challenger in this space. “Good validation of our strategy,” he said.
When asked to elaborate on the traction Saba is experiencing, Pansare said, “It’s been interesting, the industries and the applications and the use cases that we see for social are really diverse.” Social tools are being used in business contests and other initiatives to drive collaboration and integration.
Saba has a number of international clients leveraging social capabilities, including the largest educational institute in Mexico, which is doing campus wide social, a mining company in Chile is also using social. One of the largest investment firms just started deploying Saba social to leverage its power.
Even fast food restaurants are using social interactions. One in particular is using it to ensure consistency of the buns throughout nationwide franchises. Very real and interesting use cases for using social in the enterprise/small business.
“The numbers grew for a little while and they are actually falling down now,” said Pansare. “The initial buzz was good for the industry at the beginning. Now, a lot of the enterprise players have entered the market after the initial entrants paved the way. This year, Gartner only had 20 vendors in the social software market.”
The market is not small and there is room for several large enterprise players to come in and push the standard in this industry.
Salesforce has done some great things with the amount of buzz they have created with Chatter, according to Pansare. This offers a great interaction opportunity for CRM. Salesforce is not in the Gartner top six, but the company is likely to continue to push its initiatives to improve.
Other players are starting to see the benefits of HD video conferencing and we should start to see this emerge further into the market.
Want to learn more about the latest in communications and technology? Then be sure to attend ITEXPO East 2012, taking place Feb. 1-3, 2012 in Miami, Fla. ITEXPO (News - Alert) offers an educational program to help corporate decision makers select the right IP-based voice, video, fax and unified communications solutions to improve their operations. It's also where service providers learn how to profitably roll out the services their subscribers are clamoring for – and where resellers can learn about new growth opportunities. To register, click here.
Susan J. Campbell is a contributing editor for TMCnet and has also written for eastbiz.com. To read more of Susan’s articles, please visit her columnist page.
Edited by Jennifer Russell