Although much of the attention on the business use of Web 2.0 tools, such as social networking, wikis and blogs, has been focused on the business-to-consumer (b2c) market, analyst Forrester believes that the biggest opportunity exists in business-to-business (b2b). It says that the collaborative nature of Web 2.0 can help businesses cut operational spending by helping employees work together more efficiently, which is essential in this current climate.
The analyst believes that although Web 2.0 tools are already being used in organizations, they are not being used close to their full potential. It says that enterprises should focus on the four following Web 2.0 tools:
- Social networks, which can help them change the nature of work by providing 'context to content' (look at enterprise-focused tools such as Trampoline or Social Text)
- Wikis, which can help them transform collaboration by sharing information more effectively (look what drug company Pfizer achieved with its 'Pfizerpedia' wiki)
- Blogging, which can be revitalized by social networks (through tools such as Socialcast, which provides a micoblogging environment for users to share their thoughts)
- and RSS, which provides a mechanism to push content out to readers (such as News Gator's Corporate RSS tool).
Other tools, particularly podcasts and forums, have limited application in enterprises and are already in decline, says Forrester.
After a Masters in Computer Science, I decided that I preferred writing about IT rather than programming. My 20-year writing career has taken me to Hong Kong and London where I've edited and written for IT, business and electronics publications. In 2002 I co-founded Futurity Media with Stewart Baines where I continue to write about a range of topics such as unified communications, cloud computing and enterprise applications.