An Interesting CIO article Forrester: Enterprise Social Software to Become a $6.4 Billion Market in 2016
Just one comment I wanted to expand on regarding application integration. I think this one quote is the real key:
"By creating a social layer between information workers and the applications and communications infrastructure, social enterprise apps will overcome the adoption malaise that has affected UC&C,", wrote Forrester analyst Henry Dewing.
In most shops, social tools are stand-alone. Here at McGraw-Hill we have gone a step further and made it our intranet home page and our corporate directory so that gives it some additional stickiness and gets it into a users work-flow. But I think the real value is yet to come. When social becomes engrained into the business applications and workflow then we will be on to something here.
As an example, I recall back in 2008, I was attendig Oracle OpenWorld and they were showing an early version of Fusion ERP (corporate books and records). They showed a typical general ledger transaction, but on the end of it you had the ability to communicate with the originator of the journal entry. You could instant message (where the context of the JE was pre-populated) or post a discussion. They ran through the use case of instead of having to cut and paste or retype into an email to ask you question or play phone tag you could right there initiate the Q&A and possible get an instant answer. A small example, but magnify that across the business process and we have some real "Social-Accounting"....cool stuff!