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IBM Brings Analytics to Social Business
Organizations can now apply analytics to the social business initiatives.
Posted Jan 17, 2012
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IBM today unveiled new software and services that deliver comprehensive networking capabilities to the increasingly social savvy workforce, allowing business owners to gain actionable insight on social networking sentiment anytime, anywhere, and put it to work in real time.

As part of today's news, IBM is announcing new cloud services and the next generation of its social networking platform, IBM Connections. The new software incorporates analytics capabilities, real-time data monitoring, and faster collaborative networks both inside and outside the organization through IBM's SmartCloud services.

Now, organizations can integrate and analyze massive amounts of data generated from people, devices, and sensors and align these insights to business processes.

Marketing professionals can now gain real-time access to data that highlights patterns and consumer sentiment related to marketing trends and services, allowing them to adjust campaigns on the fly. With one click, professionals can react to this insight by automatically creating a social network, on the fly, bringing together experts across geographical and market intelligence and swiftly respond to these insights.

Among the software and cloud services offerings from IBM is the following:

  • New social analytics software that integrates wikis, blogs, activity streams, email, calendaring and more, and flags relevant data for action. It allows for instant collaboration with one click and the ability to build social communities both inside and outside the organization to increase customer loyalty and speed business results.
  • New software that integrates social networking capabilities with enterprise content management to better connect people with information so they can make informed decisions and act quickly.
  • The new IBM SmartCloud for Social Business, which simplifies access to business-grade file sharing, social networking, communities, online meetings, instant messaging, email, and calendar. In addition, IBM SmartCloud for Social Business will deliver a cloud-based productivity suite allowing users to co-edit documents in real time.
  • New messaging and collaboration software that brings the power of embedded experiences to the Web and mobile devices, providing a single point of entry for all business processes.

In support of today's news, IBM also announced new clients using its social software and cloud collaboration services. They include Kraft, Electrolux, MIT Lincoln Labs, Colgate-Palmolive, 3M, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Florida, Dutch Tax Office, Premier Healthcare and Brunswick.

"There is boundless opportunity for social business to transform how we connect people and processes, and increase the speed and flexibility of business," said Alistair Rennie, general manager of social business at IBM, in a statement. "A successful social business can break down barriers to collaboration and put social networking in the context of everyday work, from the device or delivery vehicle of your choice, to improve productivity and speed decision-making."

With today's news, IBM is announcing the beta of the next release of its enterprise social networking platform, IBM Connections. Powered by analytics, IBM Connections delivers wikis, blogs, activities, to help organizations collaborate on the fly. IBM Connections includes the ability to access enterprise email, calendar, and business tasks from inside the Connections platform, further unifying the collaboration experience.

The Connections landing page features a single location that allows users to view and interact with content from any third-party solution through a social interface, right alongside their company's content, including email and calendar. The embedded experience of the news feed, also known as an activity stream, is expected to allow employees from any department inside an organization to explore structured and unstructured data such as Twitter feeds, Facebook posts, weather data, videos, log files, SAP applications, electronically sign documents, and quickly act on the data as part of their everyday work experience. For example, an employee could share a document with colleagues, approve a transaction from an SAP system, act on a notification required in a business process like an insurance claim, and share content, such as status updates and files, all from IBM Connections. The embedded experience and single point of access allows users to have insight at their fingertips and share data from any place, whether on the road or in the office.

IBM is also announcing IBM Connections Enterprise Content Edition, an integrated social content management solution that combines the scalability of social networking with enterprise content management and enhanced compliance and control features sought by users in regulated industries. Designed to manage the entire life cycle of office documents, Web, and social content, IBM Connections Enterprise Content Edition increases the ability to share knowledge, gain expertise, and create high-value content quickly through advanced content, document management, and workflow use cases.

IBM is also announcing IBM SmartCloud for Social Business. IBM is aligning its LotusLive services under the SmartCloud brand where it joins the ever-growing portfolio of business solutions that IBM delivers in the market that includes offerings in Commerce, Analytics, and industry-specific solutions like Smarter Cities.

The new service gives users one-click access to social networking, file sharing, online meetings, enterprise-class email, calendaring, and instant messaging, allowing clients to collaborate inside and outside the organization while pairing business transformation with the economic benefits of flexible cloud delivery models.

Additionally, a new capability of the IBM SmartCloud for Social Business is a cloud-based office productivity suite, IBM Docs. Now in beta and planned for availability in 2012, IBM Docs allows organizations, both inside and outside the firewall, to simultaneously collaborate on word processing, spreadsheet, and presentation documents in the cloud to improve productivity. IBM Docs authors will be able to store and share documents in IBM SmartCloud, co-edit documents in real time, or assign users sections of the document so they can work privately, easing the management of multiple revisions from multiple authors in team-based documents.

GAD, one of the largest specialists for banking IT in Germany, is evaluating IBM Docs in a private cloud to facilitate browser-based document creation and change management. Approximately 450 banks will be able to reduce costs and become more responsive to their customers through GAD's bank21 solution.

Delivered in 22 languages, a 60-day trial of IBM SmartCloud for Social Business is available at no charge at ibmcloud.com/social.

IBM also released a beta version of its IBM Lotus Notes and Domino, Social Edition, a social-enabled messaging and collaboration platform built on open standards to allow users to act on any work flow process directly within the email inbox. Whether accessing email from a browser or desktop, or sharing videos and files, users no longer have to travel to a third-party site. In addition, with the embedded experience of social mail, users are more efficient when engaging in activity and more responsive to day to day tasks.

IBM intends to support mail, calendaring, and contacts in a beta release of IBM Lotus Notes Traveler for Microsoft Windows Phone on Nokia and HTC devices; the beta is expected in the first half of 2012.

IBM is also introducing a new, lower-cost program for BlackBerry users to access email in the cloud. Built on the world-class expertise of IBM Mobile Enterprise Services and the sophisticated security of the BlackBerry Enterprise Server, IBM helps bring the type of security and reliability expectations of on-premises email to cloud email environments, including built-in end-user and administrative controls for mobile device management.


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