How CIOs Can Make the Case for a Social Intranet—and Impact the Bottom Line

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As we move ever further into the digital age, information technology (IT) is shifting from a business burden to a business asset. However, the transition from one to the other requires careful guidance and management.

IT can sometimes be viewed as a trollish gatekeeper. The longstanding sentiment has been that if you want to get a new application or technology for the workplace, going to IT first is not the safest bet. The idea will be bopped on the head, tossed under a bridge or saddled with so many restrictions that it can’t have a positive impact on the people who need it.

The mentality is changing, but as stated above, it takes careful guidance and management. And it also requires action. CIOs can’t stand idly by while employees bring their own devices and applications to work. They need to present a solution that empowers employees and impacts the bottom line.

It’s found with the social intranet. By implementing the platform, CIOs and IT can make a difference not only in their teammates’ lives but also their own. And that difference is huge – saving both time and money.

How a Social Intranet Saves Time

One reason CIOs sometimes resist new applications and technologies is the time they require. It’s not easy to implement new software. It has to be integrated into the business’ infrastructure, not to mention monitored, updated and managed throughout its lifecycle.

Then it’s rolled out to employees, but in many cases, they use the tool for a short while only to abandon it. Maybe the technology was too difficult for day-to-day use. Maybe nobody oversaw its adoption and integration into workflows. Regardless of the reason for the adoption failure, the application becomes a ghost town—and then people wonder why IT isn’t happy to hear about some new solution to be tested in the workplace.

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 If that isn’t challenging enough, Gartner reports that market demand for app development services will grow at least five times faster than internal IT organizations’ capacity to deliver them by the end of 2017 – that’s just next year. IT is already strapped for time and resources, and they’re about to be overwhelmed by an app development tsunami.

The social intranet can stop it. Rather than creating multiple applications, which are often more tactical than strategic, IT invests in one: the intranet. The platform houses all the tools (like wikis, blogs, document collaboration and task management, to name a few), resources and information employees need, decreasing the time IT spends managing technology.

The bottom-line impact? It’s partially found with less time spent on management. It’s also found in CIOs and IT being better able to respond to competitive pressures in a timely manner.

How a Social Intranet Saves Money

Time is money. The amount differs from company to company, but suffice it to say that time spent managing devices and applications means losing time and money elsewhere.

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For example, if IT spends most of the day governing data and security, it isn’t able to deliver any real business value to the organization—and technology is valuable. But CIOs will have a hard time proving the point if their IT teams spend most of their days managing updates and ensuring that tools work together as they’re supposed to.

A better way to maximize IT’s talents and skills is to minimize the time they spend integrating and managing software. Yes, they are responsible for it. No, they shouldn’t lose their lives to it. They have better things to do, like developing solutions that meet employees’ needs.

The social intranet can help accomplish the goal in at least two ways. First, IT isn’t constantly barraged with requests for new apps because employees have all the tools they need in a single location. Second, IT is freed up to strategize and prioritize technology investments that cut costs and increase profits.

All of that can be quantifiably proven. CIOs aren’t making up numbers; they have hard numbers about time and money saved. They can show the impact to the bottom line, and that reinforces exactly what they already are: a business asset, not a business burden.

Change how the workplace perceives IT and drive real business value with the social intranet. See how with Incentive! Sign up for free!

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