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Principal of Chess Media Group, a social business consultancy. Jacob works with mid and enterprise organizations on developing customer and employee engagement strategies. He is also the co-author of Twittfaced, a social media 101 book for business. Jacob authors a Social CRM and Enterprise 2.0 blog.

5 responses to “Implementing Enterprise 2.0 at Intuit, Part Five: Operational Impact and Lessons Learned”

  1. Pankaj

    Rather than using so many, slightly redundant tools, isn’t it better to use an integrated suite?

  2. RJ Johnson

    I am currently using Wetpaint because it is web-hosted, low cost, has a built-in profile page for each user, and allows RSS feeds to email. These features allow participants to easily display their strengths from the VIA Character Strengths Survey and also to post how they intend to exercise one or more of their strengths each day.

    What drove your selection of Mediawiki? Are there other wikis that you also considered and why?
    Thank you,

  3. Tad Milbourn

    @RJ I’m not exactly sure what drove the selection of MediaWiki back when it was first deployed (2005 I believe, I joined Intuit in 2006), but it may have been as simple as “it’s what Wikipedia uses.” That, combined with a price of free got it in the door. But, it never got widespread adoption mainly due to the fact that wiki formatting is a large barrier for the average user. However, it does work for some teams and they still use it. And, if they’re getting value out of it, that’s a good thing.

    Again, I don’t know if other wikis were considered at the time, but I do know that some teams have experimented with PBWiki and with WetPaint over the past couple years.

    In general, we have a culture of experimentation with these types of tools at Intuit. It’s very difficult to know beforehand which tools will be a hit with users and which will not. However, by trying them out and seeing which ones take hold, Intuit can figure out which ones make the most sense to deploy more formally.

    To @Pankaj’s point, an integrated suite would be better, but we haven’t found a suite with a mix of tools that’s been as effective as the tools separately. For example, Lotus Connections (internally branded as “Join-In”), has social bookmarking, blogs, and enhanced profiles. You could say that would satisfy our needs on those three technologies. It’s an integrated suite. However, people at Intuit happen to not be into social bookmarking. And no one fills out the info to make their profiles “enhanced.” The blogs do get a good amount of usage because it’s so easy to create a post.

    The point is that the integrated aspect of the suite doesn’t generate value unless multiple parts of that suite are being used. And that hasn’t happened thus far at Intuit. Perhaps we didn’t deploy the right suite or construct the right programs around the tools. But, folks are getting value out of the separate tools, which is great. Over time, as these tools improve, I envision more of a consolidation and increased value being created by having an integrated suite, but it hasn’t happened yet.

  4. RJ Johnson

    I agree with you about the formatting and use challenges of Mediawiki. For text and hyperlinks it’s fine. But for the richer media that today’s world demands, other platforms are much friendlier.
    It’s encouraging to hear about large companies like Intuit that allow for experimentation among their employees.
    Best regards,

  5. Pankaj

    Thank you so much for your detailed response Tad. I agree, one reason for opting for multiple tools is they each perform their specific task much better than an integrated suite would. However, there are downsides too. For one, multiple logins are cumbersome. Managing multiple solutions is resource sapping. Most importantly, you cannot benefit from data flowing freely between different systems. For example your CRM system being integrated with email, and email marketing tools. Your company address book being itnegrated with your document permissions system etc.

    Regarding your point about consolidation. A sort of consolidation has already started. Google Apps and Microsoft BPOS are blurring the line between messaging and collaboration tools, which were traditionally different spheres.