Sunday, May 6, 2007

Web 2.0 in ABB: If ABB knew what ABB knows...

Web 2.0 is the latest buzz-word, and possibly also the latest hype. Same with its sibling Enterprise 2.0. Following in its trail is a heap of cryptic abbreviations and unfamiliar terms like AJAX, RSS, XML, SaaS, SOAP, semantic web and computer ontology.

I am no technical expert and couldn't write a line of code if you put a gun to my head, so to myself I have simplified this into two aspects

  • How can we make it easier for users to share knowledge with others
  • How can we make it easier to navigate the maze of the web and find relevant and reliable information

We have no plans to start competing with Wikipedia or YouTube, but the question is how these new concepts can be used to improve our web presence. Our main focus currently is on knowledge management inside the company. Our intranet has content of varying quality, would it get better or worse if every ABB employee could edit any page? Or should we limit our self to let them post ratings and comments? How could blogs help the organization to reach its goals? Could the use of social networking tools make it easier to find internal expert resources?

The other central question is how we can help employees handle the information overflow. It does not help if good and accurate information is available, if it is drowned out in poor, outdated or irrelevant content. Web 2.0 has introduced a plethora of new technologies that can help, but how do we prioritize, and how can we make sure that employees has the knowledge level needed to benefit from the technologies we introduce?

Last, but not least: How will the ABB culture affect our possibility to implement these technologies? This blog by Dion Hinchcliffe on has some interesting thoughts on the subject.


klaus.treichel said...

Let me turn around your provicative question: How will our ability to implement Web 2.0 technologies affect the ABB culture? To take a positive scenario, it can glue us together for a more collaborative working spirit. Today, we are still way too fragmented. And it might be a way to counter this evil fragmentation. Let's be optimistic!

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