Social Enterprise Apps — $6 Billion Market Opportunity By 2016

With the end of the quarter closing in, I wanted to take a step back and fill you all in on new research we have on the way. This quarter we looked at the evolution of Social Enterprise Apps, and their effect on the enterprise collaboration landscape. In today’s globally dispersed, fast-paced, highly mobile workplace, high performance teams need new tools — and social appears to fit the bill.

What exactly is a Social Enterprise App? At a high level, Social Enterprise Apps enable info workers to establish and view groups of people, information, and processes. With embedded peer rating and information feeds about employee skills, team member profiles, team objectives, and project progress, info workers gain a deeper understanding of team performance goals and results.

What features do they have, and how do they affect business processes?

  • Personal profiling identifies team members with the right skills.
  • Activity streams increase awareness of achievements and status.
  • Rating/voting enables learning from the accumulated knowledge of the team.

Where do we see this going? While the market is accelerating into hypergrowth as you read this, vendors are still early in product development. We believe the feature sets from social vendors will erupt in the next few years to a $6 billion opportunity.

Imagine flipping your computer screen every morning to a social portal that aggregates all YOUR most relevant work-related content, from most popular conversations amongst colleagues, latest meeting notes and sales projections, to project documents you are collaborating on with others, all within a sleek flipboard-esque ( interface. When you want to collaborate live with colleagues about topics you have reviewed, you could go to a virtual workplace (like to find those colleagues and have a live voice, video, or IM conversation. Advances in social analytics will create new connections within these interfaces, providing employees with access to each other’s work environments based on matched skills and interests.

What enterprise 2.0 innovations do you see on the horizon? What will be the key feature set? Are there key business processes yet to become social? Who are the cool new vendors waiting to be discovered or the slumbering giants waiting for the right time to enter the market?


Report Availability

Henry - what is the anticipated publish date of this research report? Thanks!


Hey Jennifer, we are shooting for end of October!

Great, thank you!

Great, thank you!

Henry, would you be able to

Henry, would you be able to share any market #s with us offline before the report is published?

social forecast

certainly - I'd like to hear your thoughts on usage and monetiztion models as well. lets set up a call through Foroester's inquiry team -

Federated Social Web

One more reason to create a Federated Social Web which is not dependent on proprietary Social Media platforms.

Shoes for the cobblers children - Social IT?

What are your thoughts on IT itself as a candidate use case for social tech? I recently wrote about it as one of my "top 12 for 2012" topics that I think will be disruptive to IT management practices, especially when collaborative application development and delivery models such as Agile and Devops are factored in - without social tech, they're dead or *very* analogue.

I referenced your blog in it - I hope you don't object!

Social for IT Management

The technology management function (Forrester prefers to call it the business technology or BT organization) could certainly benefit from Social work processes. Employee self-help desks, sharing of best practices, identifying best programmers for a job, and closer ties to vendors are a few examples of benefit areas. BT is often the place where early trials of technology are initiated because the tech savvy workers both help improve the technology deployment and have the culture to adopt new technology. As you note in your blog - the seamless integration to work processes will be hard to achieve and critical to success.