Web Services, Meet the Enterprise.

Fred Wilson wrote an interesting piece titled, “Taking Web Services to the Office” that talked about his belief (and Union Square Ventures’) that web services and ‘web 2.0′ technologies were going to big in the enterprise space. I agree and have started to witness big companies starting to ask how they can integrate them into their businesses. I think any business not using wikis should immediately figure out why not. They have changed the way we communicate at each of our companies.
Fred noted that Esther Dyson observed that, “…it used to be that technology would start with the goverment (military or space), then move to the enterprise, and end up in the consumer’s hands. But, she said, these days technology starts with the consumer and moves up to the enterprise.”

I recommend reading the entire ‘longish’ post, but I will share with you one experience we had with a consumer tool finding its way into the enterprise. Ironically, a large Japanese electronics maker approached Big in Japan to OEM a version of PodServe to enable their sales teams to embrace social media as an internal communication channel.

Specifically, they hope to allow each sales team to record their sales meetings using the conference call bridge feature of PodServe - allowing PodServe to insert that recording into a specific podcast available to the members of the sales team, their manager, the VP and ultimately the division president. Each sales team would create a podcast allow senior executives to time-shift the sales calls and listen to them on their iPods while they fly about the world or drive to work. Then, given the social feature of PodServe, the CEO or VP could call into the podcast with their cell phone and automatically insert a comment into the podcast feed. This is just one tiny application where a consumer tool we created is becoming a corporate communication tool.

Web 2.0 Enterprise Directions

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