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Improve Information Flow with Enterprise 2.0

by Joseph Raczynski

Enterprise 2.0, collaborative based applications, solve inefficiencies caused by the inability to locate accurate information. This session at ILTA discussed why intranets do not suffice, single silo search is dying, and what is necessary to advance the firm’s productivity.

Across the board law firms are realizing that an increase in transparency nets far greater productivity and in-turn profit.  This knowledge sharing facilitates collaboration and reduces the time that attorneys spend searching for content.  Enterprise 2.0 is at the very center of this movement.

 

Enterprise 2.0 tools:

  • At the firm level for the portal you can create public feeds and flows. This would include internal and external RSS feeds based on subject, person, group or even specific search criteria.
  • Users can create, share, and tag information. Allowing others to vote on information as helpful or not can be a major boon.
  • Blogging can raise awareness of issues in a more formalistic view and others can comment on this material.
  • Group collaboration is another great tool for organizing information. This can be done via a Wiki and other group systems.
  • Lastly at the user level Enterprise 2.0 tools allow the individual to organize your information by tags, subject area, and even manage personal RSS feeds.

Suggestions from Enterprise 2.0 implementers:

  • Structure your tools so that it is easy to understand and learn
  • Keep it well organized and as hierarchical as possible, yet “searchably flat”
  • Learn how your users work. Understand their workflow and the tools will adjust and fit into that stream
  • Do not be afraid of testing new simple to implement applications like Yammer. The immediate impact can be very beneficial, if it does not work, they can be removed with little expense.
  • Make use of “Webjams” which are places where the firm can ask questions e.g. how can people be more efficient and work better?
  • Enable easy authoring and information sharing
  • Work towards an enterprise search so that everything across every silo is available
  • Leverage early adopters. With critical mass typically 70% of the firm’s users can be brought on board.
  • Lastly, take the tools we have in our “outside of work lives” and leverage them in the firm. Typically the tools we use in our personal lives make sense to users and can be adapted to a firm use.

Enterprise 2.0 is a major and powerful arena leveraging all the firms’ data and users creating transparencies which ultimately increase efficiencies and make for a more profitable firm.

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