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Are "Systems of Engagement" Really All That New?

Back in December, I wrote briefly of business guru Geoffrey Moore’s opinion that content management is moving away from “systems of record” and toward “systems of engagement.” Agree or disagree, it’s a fascinating and important topic that is worthy of attention, even if you feel – as I do – that there really isn’t anything terribly new about it.

To (in)validate my suspicion, I spoke at length with Jesse Wilkins, who is AIIM International’s Director of Systems of Engagement and one of a select few who spends his days (and many nights, I suspect) thinking deeply about the subject. As is his habit, he was generous with his time and well-considered perspectives, and more than 3½ minutes of our conversation can be heard by clicking the “play” button at the end of this post.

Herewith, a few highlights:

• “Andy MacAfee, who’s widely credited with being the father of the term Enterprise 2.0, recently made this point: he said that regardless of what you call it, the idea of a business being social or becoming social is something that’s been around for 80 years.” Aha! So it really isn’t new after all!

• “I think he would argue that what’s new is the ubiquity of the technology, the ease of use of the technology, all those things that make it so much easier for an organization to interact not just through official channels, but in a lot of cases through many unofficial channels.” Can’t argue with this, as it’s clear that today’s consumer content technologies are now bleeding into the workplace, rather than the other way ’round as it’s been for decades.

• “It’s not like you have to teach somebody the learning curve for a CRM or an ERP system. People ‘get’ Facebook; they ‘get’ Twitter.” Now all the needs to happen is for their companies to get Facebook and Twitter!

But Wait – There’s More! (Bonus Audio Available)
All told, Wilkins and I spoke for more than 15 minutes, and the entire interview can be heard for free on our bonus page – but only if you’re a member of Weissman’s World!

If you aren’t yet signed up, just complete the signup form – there’s no cost or obligation, and you’ll have immediate access to any and every bonus item we make available … starting with this remarkable deep-dive into the future of content management.

Here’s a smattering of the extra intelligence you’ll hear in the bonus audio:

• SoE or SoR? “I think it needs to be both. Today when you talk to most constituencies of this they’re pretty firmly on one side or the other.” Another manifestation of the ‘either/or’ of line-of-business vs. IT perspectives.

• “I think the right answer is that there’s an overlap where systems of engagement meet systems of record … I don’t think it means taking screen shots of a Facebook page, printing them, and putting them in a manila folder someplace. There’s got to be a better answer than that!” Amen, brother!

• “I’m hard pressed to identify a type of organization that shouldn’t be looking at this, because again, Facebook has 600 million users worldwide. Which organization out there is big enough to ignore that user base? […] Organizations have to go where the audience is, and today the audience is increasingly on social networking.” Here’s where you really need to hear the full interview and Wilkins’ take on why organizations of all sizes need to climb aboard.

Expert Audio: What Is (and Isn’t) New About ‘Systems of Engagement’

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