I am still far from convinced that many companies in the SME sector really have a prioritized and executive level sponsored agenda to go after collaboration and the business benefits it can bring – but I am completely convinced that very few assess the costs of collaborative projects.
I am becoming a great fan of the Harvard Business Review – and an article this month reviewed the case for walking away from collaborative projects – or rather establishing a framework for assessing their ROI against non-collaborative alternatives.
The essential idea is that companies need to think about the alignment of business value and collaborative projects – many areas of collaboration turn out to be expensive, have political agendas and simply do not deliver an adequate ROI in line with the business needs – compared with the lost opportunity of a simpler project requiring no sophisticated collaboration.
What I found striking about this is :
- In all the meetings I have had with clients and potential clients deciding whether to invest in Claromentis collaboration platforms over the last five years this has never, as far as I can recall – been directly raised. If it has been a topic it is us that have started the debate, not the customer.
- I still do not find that companies here in the UK are looking for intranet and extranet collaboration solutions founded on what I would view as the correct agendas. They are looking at information management challenges – which should really be the foundation and not the ultimate goal.
After so many years of being involved in this space there just seems to be a huge disconnect between what the real world at the SME level is doing – and what the IT and business press is talking about.
I do feel that the nature of Claromentis 6.0 will provide a massive opportunity for this to change for the better – a framework that is accessible to SME companies and that absolutely facilitates the transformation from ideas to collaboration to execution is long overdue.