Enterprise social software is gaining practical currency now as analysts' auspicious forecasts begin to be realized with the first wave of early adopters. This new class of software taps informal interactions and relationships among workers with complementary interests, skills, and knowledge, offering new ways to engage the collective intelligence of organizations towards achieving business ends. As such it represents an evolutionary advance in collaboration as a means to higher productivity and competitiveness.
The industry's first integrated suite of enterprise social software, IBM Lotus Connections, became available in June 2007. Featuring five Web 2.0-based components - Profiles, Blogs, Dogear (social bookmarking), Communities, and Activities — Lotus Connections provides a full palette of capabilities that help people find expertise and information and build new relationships based on business needs. Since coming onto the market, sales of this product have continued to be robust. And now there is a growing body of deployment tips and best practices new purchasers can employ to promote steady adoption and productive use of these tools in their own environments.