Networked enterprises face big decisions

Conducted last year, McKinsey Global’s online survey drew responses from over 3500 executives representing what the company describes as the full range of regions, industries, company sizes, tenures and functional specialties.

McKinsey says “remarkable” 83% of respondents say their companies are using at least one social technology, and 65% say employees at their companies access at least one tool on mobile device. 

“Ninety percent of executives whose companies use social technologies report measurable benefits from these tools, and what’s more, small yet growing number of companies – the most skilled and intensive technology users – are racking up outsize benefits.”

Overall, though, McKinsey cautions that the number of respondents reporting certain benefits has plateaued. 

“Executives are optimistic but sober about the next leg of the social-technology pathway,” it says. “They expect increases in employee productivity but also recognize the significant organizational barriers that prevent their companies from capturing the full potential of social tools.” 

And despite the risks associated with the new open environment risks – including possible leaks of confidential information and intellectual property – 60% of respondents believe the potential benefits outweigh the possible negatives. 

According to McKinsey’s research, just under third of executives surveyed believe internal processes at their own companies will evolve from current use, with implications for project management and strategic planning. 

“To accelerate these changes and make them stick, growing number of leaders have begun to stress the importance of driving social-media skills throughout the organization,” says McKinsey. “It’s these networked organizations that are the most likely to realize competitive gains.”

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