Enterprise 2.0 In India

A recent McKinsey report
[Requires registration] speaks about high levels of interest amongst
Indian enterprises to embrace the Web 2.0 phenomenon. This includes a
host of technologies and trends like Blogs, Wikis, Peer-Peer Networks
etc., 80% of respondents in India have expressed intentions of
investing in Web 2.0 technologies over the next three years. Indian IT
companies have already jumped on to the Enterprise 2.0 bandwagon – many
of the leading firms are experimenting with RSS, blogs, wikis,
podcasting and social networking. Some of them are experimenting with
Barcamps and Unconferences for the enterprise. Enterprise 2.0
initiatives in these organizations have predominantly been offshoots of
KM and/or enterprise collaboration initiatives.

What about other sectors? Is the Indian industry Enterprise 2.0
ready? A booming economy, global aspirations and leaner or no IT (
fewer legacy systems) as compared to American/European counterparts are
all key drivers for Indian companies, both SMBs and large enterprises
to leverage emerging technologies in new ways. Some of the key sectors
where Enterprise 2.0 is likely to have an impact in India :

Retail

The retail space in India is witnessing tremendous activity. As
organized retail becomes the norm, there would be a need to enable
collaboration across the value chain. Biggest advantage is that many of
these retailers are starting ground-up with their IT infrastructure and
there is very little legacy to be dealt with. There is also a need for
retailers to go online and B2C sites are a nice sweet spot for social
software – to enable social shopping and to tie formal content with
user generated content like ratings, reviews etc., with product
catalogues.

Media

The
Media industry is undergoing a huge transformation in India like the
rest of the world. Many traditional players are looking at ways to make
their site more participatory and engage with its audience. Citizen
journalism is gaining traction. This entails augmenting existing sites
with tools/services that will enable a layer of participation. Sites
like IBN Live & Merinews are
forerunners in using social software as a means to drive peer-peer
conversations on the site and beyond. The rest of them will follow suit.

Automotive

Many Indian automotive players are going global. There is a great
need for synergy across the value chain – OEMs, distributors, R&D
and dealers. For instance getting a dealer on board in India typically
takes about 6 months and collaboration happens predominantly over email
and phone – Heavyweight CRM/Dealer Relationship Management systems only
add to the problem instead of solving it. There is also a huge
shortcoming in OEM-Dealership collaboration. Social software can play a
key role in overcoming these problems.

Financial Services

Many players in the Financial Services segment are exploring
opportunities to improve collaboration internally and with customers.
Internal collaboration would entail building out social software
wrappers around transactional applications to handle exceptions that
occur to typical processes. Collaboration with customers is also
becoming extremely crucial. For instance, in the wealth management
space, there is a need to engage on an on-going basis with High Net
Worth individuals as they plan their finances. Tools/Technologies like
Wikis, Blogs and RSS are becoming increasingly important to make this
collaboration seamless.

Apart from these, Healthcare and Education are also huge
opportunities. Which industries in India would become early adopters of
Enterprise 2.0? Where do you think is the maximum impact going to be?

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