Social media, cloud computing and big data and new cultural practices have in recent years made an enormous impact on life, politics and society – see our recent story by guest author Scott Hebner, SoMoClo is Here to Stay, Now Let’s Make it Enterprise Ready.
As a study by IBM shows many companies are now on the way to social business and big data. Although they recognize the significance of the change for the entire company, most of the money is still flowing into marketing and PR. However, customer service and sales are catching up.
IBM’s Institute of Business Value has dealt with the transition of “normal” companies in social businesses. It turned out that 46 percent of companies have increased their investment in social business this year. In addition, more than 60 percent want to increase their spending in this field in the next three years. Notably, the range of corporate functions, in which the money goes is widening. Currently, most budget still flows in marketing (67 percent) and PR (54 percent), the greatest growth will be in the areas of customer service (currently 38 percent, 54 percent in the next two years) and sales (60 percent vs. 46 percent) expected.
However, it was also turned out that almost two thirds of respondents do not feel adequately prepared for the necessary cultural change within the company. A region from which the interviewees tangible benefits hope by the shift to social business is the customer relationship: around 60 percent of respondents with experience in the implementation of social media for consumers to use social platforms to respond to customer inquiries. In two years the percentage is likely to increase to 78 percent.
The reason from which the respondents expect concrete benefits by the shift to social business is the customer relationship: companies want to learn with the help of social tools their customers better and improve their experience with the brand. Employees also want companies to improve productivity through the social business transformation. They also want to intensify the interaction with customers and partners, and use ideas and suggestions from the outside, such as crowdsourcing.
In addition, the companies have realized that they using social approaches can improve the innovation process. For this purpose they build internal communities and make structured innovation processes using social tools.
On Big data front, the report says “the information management foundation components in big data initiatives are a scalable storage infrastructure and high capacity warehouse.”
Most organizations are in initial stage of big data development with many working on understanding the concepts, (24%) or defining a roadmap (47%) and 28% are developing big data proof of concepts.
The use of information (including big data) and analytics is creating a competitive advantage for their organizations. The top three objectives for big data are customer-centric objectives (50%), improve the customer experience and the ability to create a complete picture of customers’ preferences and demands. Operational optimization, risk/financial management, employee collaboration and enabling new business models are other big data initiatives that are frequently mentioned by IT leaders.