Monday, May 3, 2010

FEI2010 - Innovation In An Enterprise 2.0 World

C. Engdahl reporting from FEI2010

Innovation In An Enterprise 2.0 World
FEI2010 Presenter: Fabrizio De Pasquale, Siemens

As Fabrizio De Pasquale points out during his presenation for the Beyond "Open" Summit, an organization such as Siemens incorporates a broad variety of globally distributed expertise. Mr. De Pasquale suggests Siemens is like a world-wide puzzle of over 400,000 people throughout the world, each possessing a small piece of Siemen’s accumulated organizational knowledge. The complexity inherent in this structure as you might imagine is immense. The question Mr. De Pasquale asks is “within such a chaotic and rich knowledge magma, is there a possibility to put apparently very different pieces together?” The ultimate challenge for Siemens is seeking, finding, and exploiting the hidden potential of the overall organization.

The key to creating synergistic possibilities within Siemens Mr. De Pasquale suggests lies in effective knowledge networking based on Web 2.0 technologies – blogs, wikis, communities, and the like. He refers to this platform as an Enterprise 2.0 environment. Leveraging these technologies and creating these synergies enables Siemens to identify new applications, identify new markets, and improve existing products by reducing time to market, increasing performance, and reducing costs.

The Siemens knowledge network, called TechnoWeb – which is based on technologies and support from Innocentive and NineSigma – differs from other social platforms because it focuses on the network itself (unlike LinkedIn or Xing which are people-centric, or operations like Flickr or Youtube which are object-centric). By focusing on the “network” Siemens is better able to create focused “knowledge areas”. They can dynamically aggregate information, cluster content, and create peer interactions that are both deliberate and emergent. In this environment, as Mr. De Pasquale says “innovation can spark at each level of user involvement.”

Mr. De Pasquale is quick to point out that TechnoWeb represents just one aspect of Enterprise 2.0. It is like a catalyst for innovation applied to specific Siemens context. The early success they’ve had with the network however – as exemplified by work conducted in Health Imaging and Power Transformation - demonstrates the innovation impact of the technology and overall approach. In his conclusion, De Pasquale emphasized that a continuous learning process gives more insights on where and how to adapt the platform for stronger and systematic impact, and that the overall process is one for the “long haul” even though more immediate business impact must be demonstrated to major stakeholders.

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