With IBM Notes 9 Social Edition, good enough is now the enemy of better
Colleen Burns 120000C4RP firstname.lastname@example.org | | Tags:  adam_smye-rumsby ibmnotes ibmnotes9 connections notes ibm_notes_9
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I expect that many of you who read this blog will have heard some form of the phrase “better is the enemy of good enough,” perhaps from a friend or family member at a time when you needed some pragmatic encouragement. One area where this saying is particularly relevant for social business, though, is in the enterprise messaging world.
I've experienced occasions where this expression (in one form or another) has been used as a justification for failing to keep pace with improvements by vendors to enterprise systems such as email. With McKinsey Global Institute revealing last year that 28 percent of the average knowledge worker's work week (13 hours a week) is now spent managing email, I'd argue that the data supports a conclusion that such a stance is in fact holding companies back. There's just too much to do to enable behaviors as frivolous as filing email, especially when there are better alternatives within easy reach. So now I encourage IT departments and email filers alike to learn a new saying—that when it comes to enterprise collaboration, roles have reversed and good enough is now the enemy of better: better user experiences, better productivity and better results for business.
The recent release of IBM Notes and Domino 9 Social Edition serves as pragmatic encouragement that better is within easy reach and can further improve a company's ability to grow into a social business from the inbox out. New features such as Quick Find, which helps users to locate information more easily in mail, calendar and applications, and to group messages by date (no need to file email by month), provide a better user experience. Of all the new features available in V9 though, embedded experiences may have the biggest implications for adoption of social business technology and practices, particularly among those employees who, until now, have been hard to win over.
I previously wrote an introduction to embedded experiences in this blog. One benefit I'm particularly excited about is that embedded experiences make participating in a social business a more palatable reality for a segment of the workforce that has spent its career in the inbox. The inbox-driven may have so far been reluctant to adopt a way of working that de-emphasizes email's role and importance. The introduction of embedded experiences support in IBM Notes, however, empowers this segment to participate in a social business without having to learn how to work with the activity stream nor leave their mail client—two potential deal-breakers in my experience.
While it has been possible to interact with social business services—such as IBM Connections enterprise social software—from within IBM Notes for several years, embedded experiences makes it possible to further streamline the user experience, introducing social pivot points into the email body and allowing actions to take place there, as an alternative to the plug-in approach that was available thus far. For IT departments, administrative features such as SmartUpgrade continue to make it easy to roll out these capabilities across the organization.
I hope I've shown you how IBM Notes 9 Social Edition can move you past good enough for a better email experience. Click here to learn more about IBM Notes and Domino 9 Social Edition and watch Scott Souder's demo.
Adam Smye-Rumsby has worked in the information technology industry since 2000 in a variety of roles including database administrator, test analyst, technical support specialist and consultant. In his current role Adam advises clients on how IBM solutions can support them in their journeys to becoming social businesses, with a focus on extracting maximum value from their existing IT investments. He enjoys guiding clients towards their social business “aha” moment, and beyond. Adam is a twice-published IBM Redbooks author and also a contributor to the IBM Social Business Insights blog.
Adam is an IBM Redbooks thought leader.