As most of you have noticed by now I am a heavy user of Social Media (Twitter, Google +, Facebook). VMware acquired, and is working on, some very interesting products which all have a common theme: Enterprise Collaboration. In this post I want to give an overview of products that I’m using and are available today or which have been announced.
These solutions allows me to communicate with my colleagues in a ways I have never been able to do before. They make my life easier, yes this sounds like I am exaggerating but I am not… I am sure I am not the only one who thinks long email threads are boring. On top of that they are difficult to control and knowledge gets lost (in the trash folder). Social collaboration solutions allow you to easily capture your companies most valuable asset: intellectual property. Start using it!
Socialcast is a true enterprise collaboration tool. It could be viewed as a social media solution for organizations, but that would be understating its value. Socialcast is something I use on a daily basis, if not on an hourly basis. I post work updates aka “worklogs”, ask questions on specific topics and mostly answer questions on any topic to which I feel I can contribute. It allows me to communicate with my team without flooding their mailboxes and it allows them to respond when they have the time and on any device. Cool thing about Socialcast is that everyone within our organization has adopted it, I can submit feedback to a KB article using Socialcast for instance. At the same time you will see communication from VP/CxO level passing by, not just generic posts but actively replying to questions as well! If you’re starting to get tired of those endless email threads floating around and you feel all valuable knowledge is being lost… sign up for Socialcast!
Many of you have already seen this and probably looked at it. I’ve been so accustomed to Powerpoint that it was difficult to use Sliderocket at first, not because it is difficult to learn but because I would click that “P” on my desktop without thinking about it. Two weeks ago I decided to remove the “P” from my desktop and to create all presentations I make from now on using Sliderocket. You might ask yourself why as Powerpoint is a great tool… If you find yourself sharing slidedecks on a daily basis or providing feedback to slidedecks I can promise you that Sliderocket opens up a whole new world for you. Sharing a Sliderocket presentation is simple. No need to sent out that 50MB PPT. Just share it using the Sliderocket and get notification when people have opened it / reviewed it. Sliderocket also provides statistics for each of your decks like unique views, views, imports etc. Start using it, I am sure you will enjoy it as much as I do.
Strides is currently in Beta and is what I would label as a “getting the job done” tool, but others may label it as a social project management tool. Either way, Strides is all about collaborating and working towards a common goal… successful completion of a project. Strides not only will keep track of objectives and associated tasks, it also allows you to attach deliverables and comment on these or even on tasks by it self. It is a simple way for teams who are not all located in the same room to work on a common project and keep track of objectives and deliverables, and keep all project communication contained. Definitely a tool worth exploring! Sign up for the Beta now!
Although VMware Octopus isn’t really similar to the above mentioned solutions it allows me to easily share documents with others. VMware Octopus was announced at VMworld and is a dropbox alternative aimed at the enterprise. I recently moved all my documents from dropbox over to VMware Octopus as a test and I must say that I am impressed. The version I am using is running in one of the VMware Datacenters and that is something which other solutions don’t offer today, on-premise, and is what I probably like the most. Especially for the people in charge of security (compliance) this is a big thing. It gives me everything dropbox provided me, but now I know my docs are safely stored within our organization and that by itself is worth a lot. I am using it on my iPad and Macbook right now… no more hassle juggling around files. I can’t wait to see what is coming up next. If you are interested, sign up for the beta.
Stop the endless boring email threads, dull unnecessary conference calls, get on-board the social collaboration train!