YAKUM, ISRAEL and BOSTON -- WorkLight Inc., an Enterprise 2.0 company, announced today its predictions of the top trends to affect enterprises considering Web 2.0 technologies in 2008. The company compiled its list based on extensive conversations with top executives and IT decision-makers at Fortune 500 companies, who are intent on implementing consumer-style tools in the workplace in the coming year. In recent years, industry experts have discussed the shift towards consumerization of IT and its effect on how work is getting done. Analyst firm Forrester Research estimates that 78 percent of IT organizations are concerned about the use of Web 2.0 tools by their employees. Gartner Research has maintained that the consumerization of IT is an irreversible mega-trend, urging forward-looking companies to embrace these technologies. Moreover, Yankee Group has concluded that over 86 percent of corporate users already utilize one consumer technology at work.
As these technologies become more widespread, WorkLight predicts that usage of Web 2.0 technologies in the enterprise will affect companies across three dimensions People, Business and Technology:
- The personal and professional lives of employees will continue to blend, and workers will seek to mirror the convenient home computing experience at the office
- Workers will increasingly build social networks in the corporate environment with the same dynamics that drive their popularity in the consumer world
- As the workforce becomes younger and more tech-savvy, employees will continue to introduce consumer tools and services into the enterprise, with and without the blessing of IT departments. These tools will include web-based services, and collaboration and social networking tools
- Businesses both large and small will seek to increase employee acquisition/retention and productivity through the use of flexible, scalable Enterprise 2.0 solutions within their walled gardens
- Organizations will look to improve effectiveness and efficiency by facilitating access to proprietary data through the use of consumer Web 2.0 tools
- Enterprise social networks will blossom in 2008, as social tools with open APIs (like Facebook) drive adoption
- Forward-thinking organizations will anticipate these developments and harness, rather than hinder, Web 2.0 technologies in a secure and innovative manner
- Security threats that target corporate data via Web 2.0 tools and services will become a topic of high priority
- The top concerns for corporations will be most visible in the following areas: data theft, access control, identity protection, privacy, information leakage and liability for information misuse by employees
- Attempts to handle these concerns will be reminiscent of experiences with email and Web 1.0 adoption in their initial corporate introduction
- of consumer-style tools without adequate safeguards may lead to a high-profile security incident in 2008, prompting IT departments to seek out Enterprise 2.0 solutions with top-of-the-line protection
This past year we have seen a significant spike in interest among companies and organizations intent on deploying consumer Web 2.0-style tools, a trend that will gain momentum in 2008, said Shahar Kaminitz, CEO and founder of WorkLight. From the insight and experience that customers have shared with us, we see that senior management is becoming increasingly responsive to the groundswell being generated by the younger generation entering the workforce.