Posted by: charlestontelles | August 17, 2012

Benefits and Risks of Enterprise 2.0, a personal case study

Benefit scenario

Ross Dawson explores some key benefits of the Enterprise 2.0 adoption in the chapter 4 of his book. Today, I will explore the key benefit productivity & efficiency and share a personal use case scenario.

When it comes to efficient project management, people from different management methodologies such as PMI, Prince2 and even Agile would agree that one mandatory component for any project is the task breakdown, or product breakdown and then tasks/activities definition (what, who and when). And from that definition, usually a project manager comes up with a timetable and effort estimation.

I remember about 6 years ago when our development team used to have a meeting to define effort estimation, then the project manager used to create a schedule (normally a timetable using Microsoft Project tool), and periodically he used to consult the current activity status with each team member. And from that the project manager used to create a status report and share across the team and other stakeholders.

Well, that was before the Enterprise 2.0 paradigm inundates the companies. What I have seen currently is we still have the meeting to define effort, but the task definition (what, who and when) is now using collaborative tools such as the fantastic Jira. See the video

Using a phrase from Andrew McAffee: “Web 2.0 is an attitude, not a technology”, I completely agree that the tool used in the past (Microsoft Project) worked very well from a long period. But today, people don’t need the project manager to ask each team member about the task status. In a collaborative environment, we update our status by ourselves, and also we can “follow” other tasks from other team member, so we can receive for example RSS syndication when a dependent task has been completed. I have used Jira in my last two projects and I can tell you with no doubt that tool increased our productivity and efficiency.

Jira is produced by a company called Atlassian. That company one of the biggest Enterprise 2.0 evangelist in the word, and they produce excellent tools for Enterprise 2.0 such as Jira and Confluence (wiki style tool). Also there is an excellent blog from an Atlassian employee called Bill Arconati. And two excellent presentations about massive wiki adoption strategies and techniques for growing your wiki.

Risk scenario

Still using the same scenario and same Jira tool, I would like to explore a negative impact related to information Security and Confidentiality also listed by Ross Dawson in his book. Sometimes, some information within the project such as task and timeline are supposed to be confidential, even internally in the company. Therefore we need to be carefully about openness and filter the team members properly to avoid loss of confidentiality.

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Responses

  1. Hi Charles, I agree with your points. In fact, I also use Confluence and Jira at work. It is an awesome too. I recently spent a bit of time customising my dashboards and using gadgets to display quick summaries and other useful content. It has helped me a great deal in my daily work, especially in keeping track of task progress. There is an ability within Confluence to restrict page permission to a list of users. This is quite useful for sharing confidential information within a restricted group of staff. Keep up the great work!

    • Hi Karen. I agree with adding restriction in some wiki style pages. Confidentiality should always be part of the E2.0 policies, otherwise the openness can become dangerous.

  2. Hello charlestontelles, This has been a very insightful read specially since its from a personal view and experience. I have never heard of tools called ‘Confluence’ and ‘Jira’ but after reading your blog post and some research, I know what I will be using as soon as I get into the workforce and finally the risks you have mentioned are spot on as they evolve not around the business but the team members looking after it and if one looses control the business will be in trouble. Keep up the awesome blogging!

    Feel free to read and comment on my blog. http://vatsalqutinb346.wordpress.com/

    • Hi Vatsal. I am sure you will spot the tools described very soon. I agree the team attitude is an important point to maintain the knowledge control.

  3. I’ve never used JIRA before and I don’t know how much information is shown, but it will be a problem if our work leak to the outside world. I’ve done a quick research about JIRA and it come out nicely. You can plan the project and manage your project which is nice. This will greatly help the productivity of team members.

    Cheers,

    Prapat W.

    • Hi Prapat.
      Actually, we are using Jira in our Intranet only, and even internally sometimes there is confidentiality among projects. Therefore, that’s very important to give proper visibility only for team members. I am pretty sure you will enjoy Jira for task tracking.
      Cheers,

  4. This is a great illustration of the productivity and efficiency benefits of a tool that fosters collaboration on task-based work. Like you, I use Jira for work; the biggest benefit I’ve seen is the transparency of the progress of work means that project stakeholders are more confident in delivery when they can see cards being worked on and completed. The more I’m reading the more I can see strong links between agile practices and enterprise 2.0 tools for IT organisations!

    • Hi Amanda.
      Excellent comparison. Agile is all about given autonomy for the team members, that ways the project task can flow more independently. In Enterprise 2.0 the collaboration is the key point. So, how can a collaborative environment lives without autonomy? Do you have the same thought?
      Cheers,

  5. Hi Charlston,

    Nice blog – You mention the risks associated with openness and confidentiality. What specific tools / methods do you believe should be integrated to combat this undeniable risk area?

    • Hi Adam
      I believe what we need to prevent inappropriate access though best practices. I think that’s more about a “controlled openness” than a specific tool.
      What do you think?

  6. Hi Charles,

    great post there!

    I love how we both look up to Ross Dawson. An expert in this field indeed.

    Also, I like the quote that you shared from Andrew Mcaffee. To me, it’s just soo true..With or without technology, if your attitude is not right, any type of technology, no matter how advanced, would not work out for you.

    Good one!

  7. Hello Charles,

    Great post !

    I should definitly have a serious look at Jira because I used to use Mantis in a previous company, I don’t know if you have hear about it(http://www.mantisbt.org/) I thought it was a great tool but everybody (including Andrew Cooks: http://qutblog.wordpress.com/) says me that it is not and that Jira is better implemented… Well I guess I would have to use Jira to really realize what it means.
    Keep up with the great posts,

    Laters !

    Claire

    • Hi Claire
      Yes, I have used Mantis before, and that is a very good for bug tracking. The advantage of using Jira is that you can consolidate bug tracking and task tracking in the same tool. If you are familiar with Mantis, a migration to Jira should be pretty straight forward.
      Cheers,

  8. […] I have already comment about the company called Atlassian in this post. […]


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