Here's some interesting results from McKinsey Quarterly which shows companies who are deploying social technologies, ranging from external social media marketing, to social CRM to internal Enterprise 2.0 tools are reporting that they are seeing measurable results.
Interestingly when use of social technologies are not integrated with an employee's work - the companies report seeing minimal increase. Which shows that more integration of social technologies in the workflow makes financial sense.
Take a look at the survey results. I personally like the classifications of the "three kinds of networked enterprises" as they call it
The share of companies where respondents report using Web 2.0 technologies continues to grow. Our research, for instance, shows significant increases in the percentage of companies using social networking (40 percent) and blogs (38 percent). Furthermore, our surveys show that the number of employees using the dozen Web 2.0 technologies continues to increase.4 Respondents at nearly half of the companies that use social networking say, for example, that at least 51 percent of their employees use it. And in 2010, nearly two-thirds of respondents at companies using Web 2.0 say they will increase future investments in these technologies, compared with just over half in 2009. The healthy spending plans during both of these difficult years underscore the value companies expect to gain.
Among respondents at companies using Web 2.0, a large majority continue to report that they are receiving measurable business benefits—with nearly nine out of ten reporting at least one. These benefits ranged from more effective marketing to faster access to knowledge (Exhibit 1).
Among respondents who say their companies are using Web 2.0, most (79 percent) achieved a mean improvement of 5 percent or less across a range of business benefit metrics (Exhibit 2). Respondents at the companies in this group report the lowest percentages of usage among their employees, customers, and business partners; say that Web 2.0 is less integrated into their employees’ day-to-day work than respondents at other companies do; and are least likely to report high levels of collaboration or information sharing across the organization. We call these companies, still learning the ropes of Web 2.0, the “developing” group.
Internally networked organizations. Some companies are achieving benefits from using Web 2.0 primarily within their own corporate walls. The survey results indicate that companies in this group—13 percent of those using Web 2.0—derive substantial benefits from deploying these technologies in employee interactions. Respondents at such organizations report a higher percentage of employees using Web 2.0 than respondents at developing organizations do. Respondents at half of the internally networked organizations reported that Web 2.0 is integrated tightly into their work flows, for example, compared with only 21 percent of respondents at developing organizations. Web 2.0 also seems to promote significantly more flexible processes at internally networked organizations: respondents say that information is shared more readily and less hierarchically, collaboration across organizational silos is more common, and tasks are more often tackled in a project-based fashion.
Externally networked organizations. Other companies (5 percent of those deploying Web 2.0) achieved substantial benefits from interactions that spread beyond corporate borders by using Web 2.0 technologies to interact with customers and business partners, according to survey results. Executives at these organizations reported larger percentages of their employees, customers, and partners using Web 2.0 than respondents at internally networked organizations did. But the responses suggest that the internal organizational processes of externally networked organizations are less fluid than those of internally networked ones.
Read more at www.mckinseyquarterly.com
Fully networked enterprises. Finally, some companies use Web 2.0 in revolutionary ways. This elite group of organizations—3 percent of those in our survey—derives very high levels of benefits from Web 2.0’s widespread use, involving employees, customers, and business partners, according to the survey. Respondents at these organizations reported higher levels of employee benefits than internally networked organizations did and higher levels of customer and partner benefits than did externally networked organizations. In applying Web 2.0 technologies, fully networked enterprises seem to have moved much further along the learning curve than other organizations have. The integration of Web 2.0 into day-to-day activities is high, executives say, and they report that these technologies are promoting higher levels of collaboration by helping to break down organizational barriers that impede information flows.