Turbotodd

Ruminations on IT, the digital media, and some golf thrown in for good measure.

Posts Tagged ‘collaboration software

Talking Through The Cosmos

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What day is it again?

Oh, yes, Wednesday.  Hump day.

I’ve been so busy this week on back-to-back phone calls that I’ve hardly had an opportunity to lift my head and see what’s going on in the world.

I finally took a few moments this morning to do so, and discovered a couple of tidbits on the mobile front. One, the new Samsung Galaxy IV is now available, and two, the QWERTY keyboard version of the new BlackBerry, the Q10, is also available.

On the former, it’s a mixed bag according to the Verge, though a mostly positive bag but one that suggests Samsung Galaxy has plenty of “good enough” competition not to warrant the steeper price of entry for the IV.

And on the latter, TechCrunch writes the Q10 is “a QWERTY keyboard smartphone comeback worth waiting for,” which I’ll consider at least a semi-positive endorsement.

Me, I’m sticking with my LG Cosmos 2 feature phone.

Being a social and digital media guru of sorts, people look at me like I’m from another planet when carrying this phone.  That alone is a good reason to do so, as it’s a great conversation starter: “What the hell are you doing with that phone??!”

The other is, I like having a phone that works as a phone.  I have an HTC Android device, a Kindle, an iPod Touch 5th gen, an iPod Touch 2nd gen, and an iPad 1st gen for all my tablet needs. But for all the time I spend on the phone, good battery life and strong signal reception are key, and the Cosmos 2 continues to deliver day after day without fail.

“Can you hear me now?” are words rarely spoken through the Cosmos.

Speaking of the cosmos, in the social media realm IBM just announced that for the fourth consecutive year that IDC ranked them number one in worldwide market share for enterprise social software.

Yay team.

Fact is, social networking adoption continues to soar as businesses look to transform their organization into a smarter enterprise that is capable of empowering a global workforce and transforming client experiences.

According to IDC, the worldwide enterprise social market segment reached 1.0 billion in 2012, representing growth of 25 percent over 2011.

As this demand grows, organizations are looking to introduce social capabilities into all key areas, from marketing and research innovation to sales and human resources. The challenge is that many lack the ability to capture and share the unique insights from each employee and use it to help drive real value to the business.

IBM’s social business software and services pair powerful social networking capabilities with analytics that help companies engage all key stakeholders whether an employee, customer or partners in order to accelerate innovation and deliver results.

Today, more than 60 percent of Fortune 100 companies have licensed IBM’s solutions for social business, including eight of the top 10 retailers and banks.

IBM’s social networking platform, IBM Connections, allows for instant collaboration with one simple click and the ability to build social communities both inside and outside the organization. We live by it inside IBM these days, and it’s available both on premise and in the IBM SmartCloud for Social Business. IBM currently has three IBM SmartCloud for Social Business facilities based in North America, Europe and Asia Pacific.

You can learn more about the latest version of IBM Connections in the video below.

IBM Expands Social Business Capabilities With New Cloud, Mobile Advances

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IBM SmartCloud Docs, a cloud-based office productivity suite, which allows users to simultaneously collaborate on word processing, spreadsheet and presentation documents to improve productivity.

IBM SmartCloud Docs, a cloud-based office productivity suite, which allows users to simultaneously collaborate on word processing, spreadsheet and presentation documents to improve productivity.

Some new news from IBM on the social business front today.

IBM announced new social business software to help clients collaborate securely in the cloud using a broad range of mobile devices.

The new IBM SmartCloud services include new social networking feaures and the release of IBM SmartCloud Docs, a cloud-based productivity suite that lets users simultaneously collaborate on word processing, spreadsheet and presentation documents to improve productivity.

I saw this capability demoed at Lotusphere earlier this year and exclaimed that I wanted it and fast. Being as virtual as we are at IBM, I find all kinds of use cases to be able to do this real-time productivity app collaboration.

Nothing like writing a presentation by committee!

The Market Is Growing

Forrester Research estimates cloud computing is going to grow from a $41 billion business in 2010, to $241 billion in 2020. And social enterprise apps market is expected to grow at a rate of 61 percent through 2016, reaching $6.4 billion. So clearly, there’s ample and broad market demand for this type of computing capability.

While many firms have adopted cloud, mobile and social networking, IBM is helping clients, including the University of Texas at El Paso, capitalize on the convergence, making it safe for the enterprise.

To help organizations address this growing opportunity, IBM is announcing IBM SmartCloud Docs and new services in its IBM SmartCloud for Social Business portfolio allowing clients to collaborate both inside the organization and externally with partners, clients or suppliers.

For example, when working on a document in the cloud, the presence awareness and instant messaging capabilities allow users to see if a document co-editor is online and available to chat in real time. The new features join IBM’s SmartCloud for Social Business portfolio which includes business-grade file sharing, access to communities, online meetings, instant messaging, email and calendar in the cloud.

Clients Getting Social in the Cloud

IBM is also announcing clients who are at the forefront of this transformation embracing social in the cloud, including the University of Texas at El Paso, Colleagues In Care (CIC), Centrax TCL, NEC Corp., the Victoria Implementation Center and Netkom iBPM LLC.

At the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP), faculty and researchers are using the IBM SmartCloud for Social Business to track the status of research projects and help facilitate knowledge sharing across campus.

The IBM SmartCloud provides a cost-effective, easy-to-use cloud solution that allows faculty and researchers to share resources and track progress of research projects without clogging up their email in-boxes while aiding in the ever challenging “version control” process for collaborative documents.

UTEP has recently expanded its use of the IBM SmartCloud for Social Business to collaborate with universities across North America who are involved in CASHI, the Computing Alliance of Hispanic-Serving Institutions.

CASHI aims to increase the number of Hispanic students who pursue and complete baccalaureate and advanced degrees in the computer and information sciences and engineering. UTEP uses the IBM SmartCloud to collaborate with faculty at other universities, invite users from the other universities at no cost as guests to work on projects together. They can share files, manage projects, assign work, and comment directly on posted documents.

“Going to one place to find materials and being able to track the progress and status of projects has been a major benefit,” said Dr. Ann Gates, Chair of the Computer Science Department at UTEP. “Before IBM SmartCloud for Social Business, email was the default way of communicating. Now I don’t have to manage a lot of emails, I can go back and look at the status of projects and what people are working on quickly and easily. We’re using the portfolio to boost brainstorming sessions across campus, sharing information immediately, saving time and resources for the university.”

New Services Make the Cloud Enterprise Ready

The following provides a breakdown of these new social enterprise capabilities in more detail:

  • Access documents anytime, anywhere — the new IBM SmartCloud Docs cloud-based office productivity suite allows users to simultaneously collaborate on word processing, spreadsheet and presentation documents in the cloud to improve productivity. IBM Docs authors can store documents in IBM SmartCloud, co-edit documents in real time easing the management of multiple revisions from multiple authors in team-based documents.
  • Sharing insight and data in real time — the new IBM Connections capabilities in the cloud allow users to embrace business-grade social networking between employees, partners and suppliers to find and share the right insight when needed. New community based blogs, wikis, idea-generation blogs and file viewers will spur creativity and drive innovation across teams.
  • Meet and chat on the fly — the new e-meeting service allows teams to meet on the fly, using instant messaging chats, screen sharing to share information and presentations, and includes a new chat room feature to communicate with colleagues, partners and clients in real time.
  • Unlimited access — chat with guests regardless of their instant messaging platform, share files and invite guests to participate in e-meetings at no additional charge.
  • Improved mobile device management — new software to help business partners organize and secure cloud-based IBM email on mobile devices allowing organizations to extend their current business capabilities to mobile devices, while capitalizing on the new opportunities that mobile devices uniquely provide.

Pricing and Availability

IBM SmartCloud Docs is available now for no additional charge in IBM SmartCloud Engage Advanced service. IBM SmartCloud Docs is also available for purchase as a service add on for IBM Connections and IBM SmartCloud Engage Standard for $3 per user, per month.

To participate in a live webcast on December 13, 2012, on how to enhance the workforce with socially enabled office productivity applications in the Cloud, register here. To hear first hand from clients using social applications in the cloud, register for IBM’s premier social business conference in January 2013 at www.ibm.com/connect.

For more information, visit ibmcloud.com/social.

Learn more about the IBM SmartCloud Doc capabilities in the video below.

New IBM Study: The Business of Social Business

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IBM’s recent study on “The Business of Social Business” revealed three major areas where organizations can most effectively apply their social business investments. The study surveyed more than 1,100 businesses worldwide, and included extensive interviews with more than two dozen widely recognized leaders in social business. You can find a link to a downloadable version of the study later in this blog post.

If you’ve been looking for a study that will help you better understand how organizations around the globe are viewing the opportunity social business presents as a fundamental way by which to rethink and overhaul how they conduct their business operations in the social age, IBM has something for you.

Earlier today, we released the new IBM Institute for Business Value study entitled “The Business of Social Business.”

This was a survey conducted of more than 1,110 businesses around the world, and with extensive interviews with more than two dozen recognized global leaders in social business. Many of those executives explained to IBM that, in fact, social business is gaining traction in their organizations.

Top line, 46 percent of the companies surveyed increased their investments in social business in 2012, and 62 percent indicated they were going to increase their expenditures in the next three years.

As the executive summary of the report stated, “The question surrounding social media today is not whether you are doing but, but whether you are doing enough.

Getting your 100,000th “Like” on Facebook, or having your latest pearl of wisdom retweeted 200 times an hour is all well and good, but are these activities driving revenue, attracting talent, and bridging the collaboration gaps in your organization?”

Is your use of social media allowing your organization to engage with the right customers, improve their online experience, and tap into their latest insights and ideas?

And does your social approach provide your customer-facing representatives with the ability to search the globe for expertise or apply learnings?

For far too many organizations, the answer are, “not yet.”

What IS Social Business?

IBM defines social business as embedding tools, media, and practices into the ongoing activities of an organization. It enables individuals to connect and share information and insights more effectively with others, both inside and outside the organization.

Social business tools facilitate engagement in extensive discussions with employees, customers, business partners, and other stakeholders and allow sharing of resources, skills and knowledge to drive business outcomes.

And what’s the upside? Top-line growth for social business users can improve between 3 and 11 percent, according to a recent study from the McKinsey Global Institute, and productivity can be enhanced by between 2 and 12 percent.

I’ll hand you off to a link of the full study later, but to net out the findings, IBM’s survey and interviews revealed three major areas where organizations apply social business investments (see graphic above):

  • Create valued customer experiences
  • Drive workforce productivity and effectiveness
  • Acclerate innovation

Shifting Towards Sales And Service

For those who have been involved in the social media realm to date, it’s important to note that social business is about moving beyond basic promotional activities to encompass the entire customer lifecycle, including lead generation, sales, and post-sales service.

The IBM study had a sub-sample of clients with some social business experience which revealed that while the percentage of companies expecting to use social business for promotional activities will rise slightly, from 71 percent today to 83 percent in the next two years, the number of companies expecting to use social approaches to generate sales leads and revenue will increase dramatically.

How companies are using social business capabilities is evolving rapidly. As you can see in the graphic, it is moving beyond basic promotional activities to encompass the entire customer lifecycle, including lead generation, sales, and even post-sales service.

Today, 51 percent use social approaches for leads and revenue, while 74 percent plan to get on board in the next two years.  Post-sales support is also expected to increase, from 46 today to 69 percent over the next two years (see graphic entitled “Users of Social Business”).

Getting Started With Social Business

Regardless of where your organization is in its own social business journey, the use of social business practices is a transformation that leads toward new ways of working.

IBM’s research revealed three essential actions to be taken across the enterprise, from the CEO’s office to the farthest corner of the organization.

  1. Develop social methods and tools to create consistent and valued customer experiences.
  2. Embed social capabilities to drive workforce productivity and effectiveness.
  3. Use social approaches to accelerate innovation.

If you’re interested in reading the full study, you can register to download it here.

As IBM’s vice president for social business, Sandy Carter, explained in the video interview below during our recent interview at the IBM Interconnect in Singapore, “culture eats strategy for lunch.” Sandy offered up some great advice on world-class social business practices, as well as how companies and individuals can better establish their brands in an increasingly crowded social marketplace.

Live @ IBM InterConnect 2012: A Q&A With Sandy Carter About Social Business

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Sandy Carter is Vice President, Social Business and Collaboration Solutions Sales and Evangelism at IBM, where she is responsible for setting the direction for IBM’s Social Business initiative, working with companies who are becoming Social Businesses, and being the evangelist for the concept and best practices around Social Business.

Yesterday afternoon here in Singapore, we started our Livestreaming endeavours at IBM InterConnect and one of the first folks I interviewed has been a beacon of leadership when it comes to social business, inside and outside IBM, and that is Sandy Carter.

Sandy currently serves as vice president for IBM’s Social Business and Collaboration Solutions Sales and Evangelism, where she is responsible for setting the direction for IBM’s Social Business initiatives, working with companies who are becoming social businesses, and being the evangelist for the concept and best practices around social business.

Prior to her current position, Sandy was VP, Software Business Partners and Midmarket where she was responsible for IBM’s worldwide software ecosystem initiatives, and prior to that also VP, SOA, BPM and WebSphere Strategy, Channels and Marketing where she drove IBM’s Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) marketing efforts to achieve 70% market share for SOA, and where IBM WebSphere became a market leader, receiving more than 34 industry awards.

Fast Company named Sandy one of the most influential women in technology, and Everything Channels CRN magazine named her one of the most powerful 100 women in channels in 2010 and 2009.

Sandy is the best selling author of two books: “The New Language of Business: SOA & Web 2.0”, which won the Platinum MarCom Award in 2008, and “The New Language of Marketing 2.0: Social Media”, which won the Silver MarketingSherpa award in 2009.

Sandy and I chatted about a variety of social business relevant topics, in which she also offered some advice to both companies and individuals looking to better establish their brands in an increasingly crowded social marketplace.

I hope you enjoy our chat as much as I did!

InformationWeek’s IT Pro Ranking: Enterprise Social Networking

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Click to enlarge. InformationWeek surveyed 405 IT professionals to evaluate enterprise social networking software. When it came to success metrics, fifty percent of respondents cited “user activity on the system” as a key metric of success.

We’ve seen a lot of consolidation in the social enterprise scene of late.

Most recently, Oracle bought Involver and Collective Intellect, Salesforce bought Radian6 and, later, BuddyMedia.

We’ve also started to see some report cards being issued about who’s leading in what arena.

Last week, InformationWeek released such a report, entitled “IT Pro Ranking: Enterprise Social Networking,” in which IW surveyed 405 IT pros to evaluate enterprise social networking software vendors.

IW explained that its ratings were based on two broad sets of criteria, the first for overall performance and items such as product reliability, innovation, and cost.  And second, category-specific features like status updates, team workspaces, and social bookmaring.

Six firms made the top box to receive a full evaluation: Drupal, Google Sites, IBM Lotus Live/Lotus Connections, Microsoft SharePoint, Salesforce.com Chatter, and Yammer (the study was apparently conducted prior to Microsoft’s recent acquisition of Yammer).

In terms of overall performance, Google Sites came out on top as the “best-performing” vendor (73%), but IBM’s Lotus Live/Lotus Connections and Salesforces’ Chatter were just a percentage point behind Google (72%), “indicating a tight race.”

Drupal arrived at 70%, and Microsoft 69%.

In terms of product reliability, Google, IBM and Salesforce came in on top with a 3.9 score, the highest mean average ranking for that criterion.

In terms of respondents’ rating of enterprise social networking features, Google earned the highest ranking at 77%, with IBM following at 75%, and Microsoft at 74%.

In terms of data security controls, IBM came out on top at 4.1, although Microsoft was close behind at 4.0.

The report had some other interesting insights, citing the need to “enable new services or applications” as the number one reason for replacing or adding a vendor, followed by “performance gains” and “operational cost savings.”  “Substantial operational cost savings” was cited as the number one reason for “factors resulting in a change in vendor,” followed by “substantial capital cost savings” and “clear technology advantage compared with current vendor.”

You can download the full report here.  Meanwhile, you can learn more about how your organization can garner measurable ROI with IBM Connections enterprise social software here.

New IBM Software Transforms the Digital Experience

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The IBM Intranet Experience Suite pulls together company information and data, personalized content and news, and social media and analytics, enabling employees to connect, collaborate and access information at anytime, from anywhere.

IBM today announced new software that helps CMOs and CIOs transform the digital experience for employees, customers and fans across a broad range of mobile devices.

The IBM Intranet Experience Suite pulls together company information and data, personalized content and news, and social media and analytics, enabling employees to connect, collaborate and access information at anytime, from anywhere.

By 2017, the CMO will have greater control of the IT budget than the CIO, according to Gartner. Marketing budgets will grow 7-8 percent over the next 12 months, which is 2-3 times that of IT budgets.

With the growing number of mobile devices, social networks and social media tools on the rise, CMOs struggle to reach their audiences. At the same time, CIOs are struggling to provide access to company data on every type of device for a geographically distributed workforce.

Given the business realignment between marketing and technology, the CMO and CIO can no longer afford to operate on separate stages. To succeed, they’ll have to forge a shared agenda to deliver business results through innovation and efficiency, working together to streamline their technology needs.

The convergence of social and mobile is prompting organizations to revisit decades-old website to create exceptional web experiences to reach and engage with their audiences.

And despite their growing reliance on technology and their soaring budgets, CMOs readily admit they lack the skills that IT requires. According to the IBM CMO Study, while 79 percent of CMOs expect high levels of complexity in their job over the next five years, only 48 percent feel prepared to deal with it.

Building on these increased demands, IBM is delivering a new Customer Experience Suite giving millions of marketing professionals the power to manage and integrate all types of data on their web sites and then analyze it for deeper insight into customer buying patterns and sentiment.

Also delivered today, the new IBM Intranet Experience Suite pulls together company information and data, personalized content and news, and social media and analytics, enabling employees to connect, collaborate and access information at anytime, from anywhere.

The Power of Social, Mobile And Analytics

The new IBM Intranet Experience software brings together the power of social networking, analytics and mobile computing to front office operations and externally to clients, allowing companies to create exceptional Web experiences. As a result, organizations can gain faster insight on customer buying patterns and consumer sentiment allowing them to more quickly reach and engage their audiences.

At European industrial automation technology manufacturer Omron, employees are connecting knowledge and technical know-how through the organization’s Intranet, helping to meet the specific needs of their customers.

Omron delivers an exceptional Web experience through a single communication platform that embeds relevant social data into the daily workflow. Omron has sped knowledge sharing across boundaries and between departments, enabling employees to support customers better and faster.

Working with IBM and its partner Portico, Omron created an award-winning business intranet, called Ozone internally, helping to create a single-source communication and collaboration platform for all 1,700 European employees.

The IBM Intranet Experience Suite integrates with external social media, including Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube, allowing employees to pick and choose which applications they want in their Intranet view. For example, a sales manager can leverage the Cognos software integration to ensure a clear view into monthly sales reports by region, as well as competitive background on new product updates and forecasts.

“The world is changing and is becoming increasingly connected and social,” said Michel Min, Head of Strategic Communication & eMarketing, Omron Europe B.V. “Because of this, we know our clients are changing as well, which is why it’s increasingly important to ensure our sales teams have the right information at the right time.”

Analytics to Help Marketers Engage Audiences 

From digital marketing and mobile commerce, to websites and social media, marketers are inundated — often paralyzed — by data amassed from consumers via searches, purchase histories, Facebook “likes” and comments on Twitter.

Combine that with data about in-store traffic, conversations with call centers and updates from suppliers, today’s marketers confront a daily deluge of data waiting to be sifted for nuggets of intelligence they can act upon to boost their business.

Because of this, it’s critical for CMOs to not only be aware of and monitor the social conversation, but to truly understand the sentiment and interact one-on-one with that customer. Taking it one step further would be to integrate these conversations directly into the organization’s web site, providing one place to both network and shop.

The new IBM Customer Experience Suite provides CMOs with the power to manage and integrate all types of data on their web sites and then analyze it for deeper insight into customer buying patterns and sentiment.

Web data has evolved today to include social media, videos, and web-based forms, as well as traditional enterprise data such as financial, customer and order data, and transactions. The software suite pulls together IBM’s market-leading enterprise portal, web content management, forms, and enterprise social networking software into a single view.

CIOs Creating Exceptional Intranets To Help Employees Gain Insight from Data Deluge

The new IBM software also helps business leaders extend their corporate intranet to a broad range of mobile devices in an effort to deepen employee collaboration and information sharing.

According to IDC, employees typically see up to a 30 percent increase in productivity using social tools internally to complete their work. With unlimited access to any type of information, consumers expect this same level of information availability in their professional lives, in order to work efficiently and reach business goals quickly.

The new IBM Intranet Experience software brings the power of social and analytics capabilities to CIOs and lines of business employees helping organizations innovate and evolve their internal operations and communications. The solution pulls together company information and data, personalized content and news, and social media and analytics, enabling employees to connect, collaborate and access information at anytime, from anywhere.

You can learn more about the IBM Intranet Experience Suite here.

Live @ Lotusphere 2012: Lotus Market Researchers On The Social Business Market Opportunity

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Whew.  Well, I seem to have scooted out of Orlando JUST in time.  As my JetBlue flight was careening down the runway prepared to take off for Austin, I was able to see the massive Boeing 747 that is Air Force One parked just across the tarmac.  Apparently, President Obama was in town to talk tourism at the Magic Kingdom.

But I didn’t leave before I had the opportunity to interview key IBM Collaboration Solutions market researcher, Carol Galvin, and senior consulting strategist, Catherine Lord, on the business opportunity and market landscape around social business.

If you’re trying to get a better understanding of “where’s the beef” around the social business opportunity, this is a great place to start. Let me just share one whopper of a sound byte that should capture your attention: The social business market opportunity is expected to reach $99 billion by 2015!

A special thanks to Scott Laningham, my remote videocaster-in-chief, who stopped working on his skateboarding bulldog videos long enough to help produce this video via Skype from Dolphin Studio 8004 (better known as my hotel room).

Connecting @ IBM Connect 2012

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It was on this day in 1845 that Texas officially became the 28th state in the United States of America.

Happy Birthday, Texas.

But, Texas is NOT where I’ll be in a short couple of weeks.

No, instead, I’ll be visiting the 27th state admitted to the United States of America.

Any guesses on what the 27th state was?

Click to enlarge. At IBM Connect on January 16-17, 2012, in Orlando, Florida, discuss the why, what, and how of using social, mobile, and cloud technologies to meet common business challenges and to enable people to improve their business performance. IBM Connect registration fee includes access to IBM Connect 2012 keynotes and breakout sessions, dining, a Solutions Center, and two exclusive evening events.

That’s right, Sunny Florida!

Lotusphere, to be more precise.

And IBM Connect @ Lotusphere, to be perfectly precise.

I’ll be making my third return trip to Lotusphere, and I couldn’t be more excited.  Though I’ll be leaving Scott Laningham behind to cover the podcasting front remotely, I’ll be there in full regalia, and attending a number of the IBM Connect sessions.

If you’ve not heard of IBM Connect, think of it as a conference-within-a-conference for those forward-thinking business leaders who want to learn how to turn the opportunity that comes from becoming a social business into measurable business success.

At IBM Connect, C-level executives and business leaders from a wide range of disciplines — product development, R&D, marketing, sales, customer service, HR, corporate communications, and IT — and from a diversity of organizations around the globe will come together to discuss the why, what, and how of using social, mobile, and cloud technologies to meet their business challenges and to enable people to improve their business performance.

I’ve included a snapshot of the sessions from Day 1 of IBM Connect (see above), but in the meantime, you can go here to learn more about the event and to register.

Leading up to and during the event, stay turned to the Turbo blog for full coverage and highlights from both Lotusphere and IBM Connect 2012.

New Collaboration Capabilities

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IBM introduced a new collaboration software suite in the that gives users one-click access to collaboration and social networking services for only $10 per month via the cloud.

IBM also announced today new enterprise-class email and social networking capabilities, value pricing options and third party integrations for its flagship cloud collaboration offering, LotusLive.

IBM LotusLive Communities

The Communities feature in LotusLive enables users to tag information, share bookmarks, create activities and use a discussion forum from the IBM cloud.

As I’ve mentioned in this blog previously, LotusLive is how many of us inside IBM currently manage and communicate across great distances, farflung teams, and so on, and has, in fact, just as with the original instantiation of our enterprise instant messaging system, Lotus Sametime, become integral to how we run our business.

What’s New: LotusLive, Lotus Notes, Are In The Cloud

With this announcement, IBM is making it easier for customers of all sizes to take advantage of all the collaboration capabilities of LotusLive. The new LotusLive collaboration suite combines enterprise-class email, calendaring, instant messaging, Web conferencing, file sharing and social networking services in an easy to deploy, simplified package for $10 per user per month.

IBM also unveiled a Cloud service called LotusLive Notes, based on IBM’s flagship messaging capabilities already used by millions of people worldwide.  Building on deep experience in serving the enterprise, LotusLive Notes delivers feature-rich email, shared calendar, instant messaging and personal contact services, starting at only $5 per user, per month.

I can hear the Crazy Eddie voiceover: “Only $5 per user, per month!  Are you craaazyyy?!”

Building Community With Communities

Building on its leadership in enterprise social networking, IBM is also introducing a feature within LotusLive called “Communities” to help advance organizations’ ability to work together both inside and outside their enterprise.

Within a Community, members have the ability to tag information, share files and bookmarks, track projects and host discussion forums securely across multiple companies.

“Businesses are looking to reduce costs, do more with less, and find ways to work more closely with their customers and partners,” said Sean Poulley, IBM vice president of cloud collaboration. “LotusLive gives them the right tools to do this, delivered by a company they trust and is focused on security and reliability.”

Businesses Big And Small: Choosing LotusLive for Competitive Advantage

Businesses around the world, such as aatranslations, SIT La Precisa and Signature Mortgage, are choosing LotusLive cloud collaboration services for the unique business value it delivers in today’s competitive landscape.

aatranslations, a mid-size pan European provider of language translation services, is taking advantage of the LotusLive licensing model to easily collaborate with 7,000 clients and 700 translators in 20 countries, without the worry of firewalls or additional costs.

Working with IBM third-party provider FreshTL, aatranslations chose IBM LotusLive over Microsoft BPOS and Google Apps because LotusLive removes barriers to working together, allowing them to conduct business and collaborate with anyone and reducing the time it takes to work on every project.

SIT La Precisa, an Italian-based company that specializes in the design and manufacturing of electronic controls and equipment uses Lotus Notes and Domino on premise in their headquarters.  They chose IBM LotusLive because of the unique hybrid value, bringing together on-premise and cloud-based services easily.

With employees working all over the world, many in small offices with just a few people, it had been difficult to provide the same email service to everyone. SIT La Precisa wanted to move its disparate staff off a variety of email systems, including Microsoft Exchange, onto one email platform without having to make expensive capital investments in infrastructure. It is currently rolling out LotusLive iNotes in several markets across the globe to provide employees with essential messaging and calendaring capabilities under one domain name.

Signature Mortgage Corporation of Canton, Ohio is using IBM LotusLive and taking advantage of the integration with third-party Silanis’ e-SignLive services, delivered by IBM business partner Silanis. By allowing their clients to electronically review and sign mortgage applications from the convenience of their home or office, Signature Mortgage hopes to improve customer experiences, generate better rates for customers and increase revenues for the company.

By filing and sharing their documents in LotusLive, customers no longer need to spend time or money on printing, shipping, returning and verifying applications. Signature Mortgage expects to reduce the time to process mortgage applications from its current seven-day track record down to 24 hours.

Today IBM also announced two new integrations with third-party providers, Tungle and Bricsys, designed to allow customers to collaborate seamlessly in their day-to-day work. These latest integrations illustrate IBM’s commitment to help mid-size businesses find new and affordable ways to apply technology to solve problems and scale for future growth.

Tungle Corp. has teamed with IBM to integrate its online scheduling and calendar services with LotusLive, and Bricsys, a provider of cloud-based document, data, task and report sharing, has teamed with IBM to integrate its Vondle services with LotusLive.

For more information on IBM LotusLive cloud collaboration services, please visit www.lotuslive.com

Written by turbotodd

October 5, 2010 at 9:43 pm

How Now Brown Cloud

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Yesterday, IBM announced some additions and enhancements to its LotusLive cloud collaboration tools family, including the ability to access UPS shipping functions from within the product.

LotusLive delivers cloud-based, integrated email, Web conferencing, social networking and collaboration services to simplify and improve daily business interactions with customers, partners and colleagues.

Though you won’t get that cool looking guy from the UPS TV commercials – you know, the one where he makes it all seem so simple while drawing at the whiteboard – what you will get is the ability to get quick access to UPS shipping details directly from your LotusLive dashboard.

UPS serves more than 200 countries and territories worldwide; this solution places the ubiquitous UPS shipping services at the fingertips of LotusLive business users.

IBM also announced additional language support (15 languages, including the addition of Danish, Finnish, Norwegian and Swedish, and adding to the current availability of Brazilian Portuguese, Dutch, English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Simplified Chinese, Spanish and Traditional Chinese) and other new integrated services from Skype, Salesforce.com, and Silanis.

Skype, E-Signature Services, $7 A Month Per User

With the LotusLive Engage for Salesforce CRM integration, customers can take advantage of LotusLive Meetings, Files, and Activities to collaborate with colleagues around the world from within Salesforce CRM.

Silanis e-SignLive e-signature services enables people from multiple organizations to use LotusLive to easily participate in a fully electronic signing process, helping to complete business transactions and legal contracts faster, more efficiently and with fewer errors.

This partnership will expand the potential reach of LotusLive to the world’s largest insurance and financial services companies, government agencies, integrators and service providers that trust Silanis to move their business processes online.

As an example, Signature Mortgage Corporation, a beta customer for Silanis e-SignLive, is enabling clients to complete and sign mortgage applications using the combined Silanis e-SignLive and LotusLive solution. This will help to improve customer experience and retention at Signature Mortgage Corporation, as well as enable the 10-person mortgage consulting team out of Canton, Ohio to compete in a market where low rates alone aren’t enough to win new business.

LotusLive users can now also use Skype to make voice calls via a simple click of a LotusLive contact’s Skype name or phone number. Millions of individuals and businesses use Skype to make free voice calls, send instant messages and share files with other Skype users — and now, LotusLive users can have convenient access to these same global communications tools right from within LotusLive.

These partner integrations from LotusLive help people work the way they want to work, demonstrate the power of the open Web and showcase the power of the cloud – allowing people from any company to easily come together to get business done. For more information on these integrations, please visit here.

Available now, businesses can purchase a new bundle of secure, enterprise-grade cloud email and social networking for only $7 USD per user, per month. 

Combining the capabilities of LotusLive iNotes and LotusLive Connections, the bundle provides essential email, file store and share, activity management, instant messaging and social networking services to enable businesses to work with anyone from anywhere and is available today at www.lotuslive.com/bundle.

A no-cost, 30-day trial in these languages is available at www.lotuslive.com/compare.  To see these new capabilities in action, you can watch the demo below.

For information on the IBM LotusLive Partner Program — including a no-cost, 365-day demo account for IBM business partners – visit www.lotuslive.com/businesspartners.

Written by turbotodd

April 15, 2010 at 1:48 pm

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