As more and more companies adapt to enterprise social networking, the evidence of marked gains continues to build. A recent McKinsey survey highlights both the continued growth and the tangible benefits of enterprise social networking.
Growth in Non-Tech Adoption
The use of enterprise social networking has truly broken-out of the high-tech sector. Not only did 72% of respondents to the McKinsey survey report that their companies are using social technology, but use in heavily regulated, traditional industries is high. McKinsey note that 62% of companies in the energy sector have deployed social networking technologies, with take up in the financial services sector even higher at 64%.
Such high adoption rates reflect the growing recognition of the benefits offered by social technologies. The benefits may at first seem intangible. However, the McKinsey survey reports that companies are seeing reduced costs and growing revenues.
According to the McKinsey survey, companies using enterprise social technology experienced the following benefits:
- Increasing speed to access knowledge for employees – 74% (of respondents)
- Increasing effectiveness of marketing – 69%
- Reducing communication costs within a company – 58%
- Increasing customer satisfaction – 47%
- Increasing speed to access internal experts – 51%
- Reducing marketing costs – 43%
Executives are understandably bullish about the future impact of social technology. Early adopters are already experiencing organisational benefits, with some of them including external partners and suppliers in their networks. These “extended enterprises” look set to challenge the normal ways of doing business.
McKinsey suggest that executives need
“To think strategically about how social technologies can support business processes by helping their organisations to navigate the external environment and to forge stronger links with customers and vendor”.
However, they emphasise the importance of being proactive in leading this change, and making sure that social technologies are integrated into daily workflows properly.
Prepared on the basis of McKinsey Global Institute’s “How Social Technology Are Extending The Organisation”, McKinsey Quarterly, November 2011.