Why social media is an important business tool

This is an excerpt from our e-guide, GET SET & GET SMART - 5 powerful tools you need for business, produced in partnership with IBM

As the not-so-old adage goes, we’re better connected.

Considering that the average internet user has an average of 5.54 active social media accounts, it seems that we’re better connected than ever. But we don’t just need social solutions in our personal lives, we need them in our professional lives too. Businesses must providing users with an internal social media platform so that colleagues can collaborate in real time.

Social media has transformed the way we communicate, not just with our families and friends, but our clients and colleagues. Thanks to IBM’s Social solutions, our businesses can now be as connected as our personal lives. Providing users with an internal social media platform, IBM social solutions make collaboration and cooperation a piece of cake – no matter how large, small or geographically stretched a business is.

KEEPING IT REAL

Keep up with colleagues; collaborate in real time. IBM’s social business tools help you to work smarter and faster, no matter how big or small your business may be. With real-time collaborative systems, you can avoid drawn out delays on projects and streamline shared work processes.

COMPANY CULTURE

At the heart of any successful small business is its character. A company culture that sets it apart from the rest, a core set of values that make it unique. Yet company culture is often one of the first things to go as a business grows, internal structures change, and values become diluted as more team members are brought on board.

With IBM Enterprise social solutions, you can keep sight of what’s at the heart of your business, bringing everyone together as your business grows by easily sharing information.

FRANCHISE

One of the biggest challenges to building a successful franchise is maintaining the same quality and character across the chain. Thanks to social solutions from IBM, franchisers can keep franchisees in the loop, instantly sharing best practices, management solutions and promotions.

LONG DISTANCE

They say long distance relationships never work, but with social solutions, you can stay close to your overseas partners; in business, at least. One building supplies firm with semi-independent offices across the globe used IBM Connections to collaborate on a new product that appealed to all markets, using the social platform to share information and ideas at every step of the process.

CASE STUDY:

BOSTON CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL: USING SOCIAL TO SOLVE PROBLEMS

Gaming, the internet and Facebook are not necessarily things you’d expect to see in a medical lexicon. Yet that’s exactly how Dr Jeffrey Burns, of Boston Children’s Hospital, came to realise that there was something in his son and his friends’ gaming experience that made him wonder how he could work better with other hospitals and doctors across the world.

He realised that the same techniques gamers use could be applied to share expertise, solve problems and effectively save lives. Dr Burns set up a social group that allowed sharing of the teaching hospital’s knowledge and an application was designed that staff could easily use.

Training videos cover a range of advanced medical procedures taught in the hospital, but not elsewhere. A simulator lets physicians practice their skills on a virtual ventilator withoutendangering patients.

Social networking tools such as profiles, tagging and communities create a milieu of active knowledge sharing rather than passive learning. One interactive feature lets users comment on lectures and tag their comments anywhere in the video.

Other users can see the comments, add to the discussion, respond over time and search the tagged content. Medicine as a social business. Who would have thought?

 

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Get set&get smart: 5 powerful tools you need for business

This e-guide has been produced in partnership with IBM

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