Most IT shops snubbing blogs, wikis, RSS

Web 2.0 business potential remains untapped

The business potential of social-networking Web sites and various Web 2.0 technologies remains largely untapped, according to separate reports released by the analyst firms Forrester Research and Gartner on Thursday.

IT departments are taking an active role in acquiring and deploying Web 2.0 technologies, Forrester found, but such individual technologies as blogs, wikis and RSS feeds are being adopted in only a minority of businesses.

For example, 64 per cent of IT shops have no plans to invest in wikis in 2008, and another 8 per cent were not familiar with the technology, according to a Forrester survey of 729 IT decision-makers at US companies with 500 or more employees. Sixty-nine per cent of IT shops had no plans to invest in blogs this year, and 66 per cent have no plans to invest in RSS.

That's not to say IT shops are ignoring these technologies. When it comes to deploying Web 2.0, "budgetary controls, the need for integration and technical skills, and the growing importance of Web 2.0 tools are all putting IT departments in the driver's seat," Forrester analyst Oliver Young writes.

Most IT decision-makers expect Web 2.0 to have a moderate or substantial impact on their business in the next three years. Funding for Web 2.0 deployments is more likely to come from IT than from any other department, Forrester found. IT budget constraints are thus a roadblock for many Web 2.0 initiatives.

IT departments should get involved in Web 2.0 initiatives, because unmanaged deployments driven by non-IT employees carry the risk of exposing sensitive corporate data. Nearly 80% of the IT decision-makers surveyed by Forrester were concerned about this risk.

Gartner, meanwhile, surveyed more than 4,000 PC and mobile phone users in 18 countries and territories, finding that most users of social-networking Web sites are "motivated by personal needs and a desire for entertainment, rather than business and practical objectives."

"Although the potential of such sites for business remains largely untapped, they will become increasingly important to the competitiveness of large enterprises in the future," Gartner writes.

Nearly half of respondents to the Gartner survey use social-networking sites, mostly by PC. "Despite the hype surrounding social networking, Internet users generally did not place a high level of importance on social network sites, compared with other mainstream Internet applications, such as e-mail and search," Gartner writes. "However, taken together with other broader forms of networking, including instant messaging, e-mail, sharing of photos, files and chat rooms, there is a significant aggregate level of interest in the social aspects of communication as opposed to applications that are simply transactional, diverting or functional."

In the enterprise, blog systems are used primarily for internal communications and sharing of knowledge and content among workers, according to the Forrester survey. Content aggregation and corporate communications are the most common reasons to deploy RSS, with marketing to customers the third most popular use. Wikis are most popularly deployed as an "internal Wikipedia" for sharing information and collaborating on document creation, Forrester found. About 12 per cent of companies that have deployed wikis are using them externally to gain insight from customers.

Although most IT departments aren't investing in blogs, wikis and RSS, the majority of those who do say they have gained business value from the tools, Forrester's survey found.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Jon Brodkin

Network World
Show Comments

Cool Tech

SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™

Learn more >

Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44

Learn more >

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?