Social Media @ Cisco-Quad based Integrated Workforce Experience for Employees

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Information about Social Media @ Cisco-Quad based Integrated Workforce Experience for...

Published on March 18, 2012

Author: rajeshdgr8



Cisco is at forefront of social media usage within their organization

Analysis & OutlookSocial Media @ Cisco-Quad based Integrated Workforce Experience for EmployeesCisco integrated social media at a strategic level and provided its employees internalcollaboration tools and intranet which employees were actively encouraged to use themfor improving their performance and their productivity. Top Management investedmillions of dollars in developing these tools and platforms and the CEO, CTO and othertop executives of Cisco are active bloggers and initiate conversations that inspireemployees to actively participate and use these tools. Cisco believes it is necessary forbusinesses to adapt to the new trends and changes that are happening with the rapid riseof mobility and the availability of devices like tablets, smartphones, etc. Employees aswell as consumers are using these devices and other social networking tools extensivelyin their personal lives and are looking to use them in workplaces and businesses do nothave any other option but to provide them with access to such devices and tools for theorganizational success. Cisco provided its employees IWE, which is a platform that hasvarious tools for networking, sharing, communicating with other employees within theorganization.Ciscos global intranet home page is Cisco Employee Connection which employees usefor everything from meeting schedules, e-mail, and communications to online expensereporting, distance learning, and telecommuting services. For Cisco employees thisintranet has been a platform to share and collate information and knowledge amongthemselves but it lacked the personal touch and feel. Employees were also looking touse collaborative tools like blogs, wikis, videos, forums etc within the organization intheir projects and daily activities. Cisco in 2009 developed Integrated WorkforceExperience (IWE) an internal collaboration platform that employees can use effectivelyto connect, communicate, and collaborate with people and communities, as well asshare information for organizational growth, encourage innovation and createsustainable productivity. In 2010 Cisco moved IWE to Cisco Quad environment whichprovides all the social networking tools like blogs, Facebook and twitter styled,YouTube styled video sharing sites, etc to all the employees internally.IWE allows employees to find and connect with experts within the organizationthrough an internal directory similar to Facebook with employee profiles that highlighttheir expertise, activities and interests and helps in socializing among employees.Employees can also create communities and organize into groups based on their work,expertise, interests, hobbies, etc and collaborate and share knowledge for theorganizational success. Employees share content in the form of documents, videos, blogposts, discussion forums and IWE is the most important source of data and informationfor the employees and they can distribute the information easily with IWE. Anotherimportant feature of IWE is personalized workspaces for the employees called MyView which is user defined home page that provides access for people, communities,news, applications and events and also provide the necessary updates and activities ofvarious connected employees and member communities. Employees can easily interactwith the internal systems of Cisco easily through IWE and use it in their daily activitiesand transactions.According to Cisco, key statistics highlight the IWE use among employees as of mid2011: Nearly 87,000 unique visitors with software developers and salespeopleRajesh Prabhakar Analyst Bio @

Analysis & Outlookcomprising the largest portions of this total. More than 900,000 visits to the IWE siteper quarter and the overall average of 6.05 visits per week per user indicates that IWEhas become a regular part of employees’ work activity. More than 1000 IWEcommunities created, of which slightly more than half are open to all IWE users. Thenumber of communities has quadrupled in one year as employees see IWEs value forsharing information and resources with colleagues by project, location, interest, etc.Almost 14,000 IWE users "follow" other users in order to receive alerts when thoseemployees posed new information or take other action within IWE. The followcapability is especially effective for technical experts and managers who post resourcesof interest to multiple colleagues within their department or across the company.Statistics also show the popularity of IWE features: A 25 percent increase in thenumber of IWE discussion forum messages in one month. 1,400 videos created byCisco employees and embedded in IWE for on-demand viewing via the Cisco Showand Share solution. (Source: How Cisco IT Evolved Enterprise Social Software and Collaboration)Cisco employees are provided with the necessary guidelines and policy is in place tocontrol the social media activity and the strategy for social media is determined by ateam of ten people called centre of excellence. Within each department responsibilitylies with specific people who control the activities. Employees are trained through 30workshops which trains employees in terms of social media policy and how to behaveon social media platforms and necessary certifications are provided once they completethe trainings and the people who control the social media activity and participate in thesocial media strategy formulation these trainings are must. Cisco Social Media Policyalso encourages employee participation in various platforms and they are also providedwith incentives for such participation. Employees who are key contributors arerewarded through mentions in newsletters, annual awards and also team awards aregiven for active participation. The social media participation with customers and otheremployees is also a KPI in the employee annual performance review process.Employees are also provided with the support of the technical experts who will help inthe participation on the social media platforms and create, distribute content likevideos, blog posts, documents, etc.Cisco created a culture within the organization that actively supports the use of varioussocial networking tools within the organization by the employees to collaborate,communicate and share knowledge. The quad based IWE is at the centre of this and topmanagement use of Video conferencing, blogs, wikis and podcasts as part of thecommunication with the employees has encouraged employees even more too activelyuse the social media tools as evident in the usage statistics. Cisco has realizedsignificant business value in terms of cost savings, improved employee productivity,and transformed business processes through the IWE platform. Cisco gained betweenUS$3 million and $24 million in the value of increased employee productivity based onIWE usage and expects to increase to between $9 million and $68 million by mid-2012based on increased adoption. Cisco also benefited in increased sales of products asemployees and sales teams collaborate effectively in driving sales. Cisco also usessocial media actively in its B2B initiatives with customers and channel partners. Withtremendous success of Quad internally within Cisco, Cisco sold the Quad offeringexternally to customers and Cisco has 50 companies — about 700,000 users — payingfor the service.Rajesh Prabhakar Analyst Bio @

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