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As you may know, together with Emanuele Quintarelli we have developed in the last months the Social Collaboration Survey 2013. Here some insights about what we discovered in the last months.

Along with the many projects recently carried out in Italy, the attention on collaborative dynamics and best practices is evidenced by the numerous international reports (Gartner, Forrester, MIT, Deloitte, Capgemini, Dachis …) who analyze the phenomenon from a human, organizational and technological point of view. While interesting, such data have rarely focused on Italy, on its network of small and medium-sized enterprises with its specific socio-economic conditions. The Social Collaboration Survey 2013, conducted by Stefano Besana and Emanuele Quintarelli, finally fills this gap by mapping collaborative practices and bringing to light their secrets and strategies for success.

Carried out online from July to September 2013, the Social Collaboration Survey has involved more than 300 Italian companies in an unprecedented X-ray analysis on 4 collaboration axes: culture, organization and processes, technology, measurement.
Among the main dimensions analyzed:
  • Relevance: To what extent is collaboration considered as a strategic topic both today and in the near future?
  • Drivers: What are the business drivers that lead companies to introduce tools and participatory approaches?
  • Sponsors: Which departments have the responsibility to launch and / or support collaborative initiatives?
  • Maturity: At what level of maturity are companies in our country?
  • Budget: How large are the available budgets and how are they spent among the different areas of the project?
  • Measurement: Which performance indicators and metrics are in place and how much is performance measurement already an integral part of existing initiatives?
  • Best & worst practices: Which strategies have been particularly effective in achieving high levels of adoption and what is important to avoid?
  • Processes: How deeply is collaboration intertwined into business processes?
  • Tools: Which tools are most often used by employees?

The results of Social Collaboration Survey 2013 underline that:

Collaboration is much more than a fad. The importance that companies assign to it is high and most likely to grow over the next three years up to 75% of the sample.

Collaboration generates value for the company. A targeted deployment of social platforms increases the efficiency of the company (43%), facilitates knowledge reuse (40%), improves project coordination (30%) and allows employees to stay up to date on what is done by their colleagues (30%).

Without adoption there is no return. Although it cannot be considered the end goal, pervasive adoption of new ways of working is instrumental to materialize the economic returns expected by management. For the majority of respondents, this still doesn’t happen, since only a small percentage of employees (<30%) is already involved in 2.0 tools. Less than 10% of companies have instead reached the milestone of almost complete adoption (>75% of employees).

Top Management sponsorizes the initiative. Even with bottom-up initiatives, real change requires a high level of sponsorship and a strong buy-in from the top management (70% vs. 34%).

No orphans. A careful, continuous and qualified cultivation is certainly not optional for those who aim to conquer the entire company. Successful projects show a lack of resources 5 times less (9% vs. 49%) than less mature initiatives.

Budget for change. Although still limited, the investment on collaboration grows hand in hand with its importance. The lack of budget (less than 10K Euro) is much rarer (36% vs. 64%) for the firms with proven experience on collaboration. This budget is also spent less on technology and more on people and strategy.

Measure to ROI. Measurement is correlated to success. Successful projects have metrics in plance 2 times more than others (91% vs 50%). More than participation metrics, business KPIs are core inthe most advanced projects (61% vs 22%).

A more collaborative culture. Large companies are more willing to recognize the value of collaboration (82% vs. 70% in 3 years).

More focus on business needs. Bigger firms have stakeholders most often positioned in specific units such as Innovation, HR, Customer Support, Training and Education.

ROI as the main barrier. Apart from the overall lack of understanding of the potential of collaboration by the top management (50%), the most clear resistance in the large company is the difficulty of measuring the return on investment or the impact of intangible benefits (49%). In smaller companies it is rather the culture to represent the most obvious obstacle (58%).

For more information visit:

We just published some excerpts and insights from our Social Collaboration Survey.
Here you can find more information about what we discovered

In a connected and digital society, expectations and behaviors individuals expose are everyday more influenced by the weight of the communities they belong to. Well beyond the personal dimension, this same social capital is now making its way into organizations, changing work practices, engagement mechanisms and even the drivers behind firms’ existence.

The Social Collaboration Survey 2013 analyses connection, communication, motivation and sharing dynamics among employees to surface the business potential, barriers and acceleration factors towards a new idea of firm. One that is able to address the huge economic challenges of the coming years.

To us, Social Collaboration is

A set of strategies, processes, behaviors and digital platforms that enable groups of individuals inside the organization to connect, interact, share information and work towards a common business goal

With the hope that this study will help in proving the value Social Collaboration can unlock, increasing the awareness between senior managers, identifying effective roll-out strategies, discovering the most impacted business processes, understanding how various organizational characteristics influence project outcomes.

The first quantitative study on the maturity level, the potential, the barriers and successful strategies for Social Enterprise initiatives. While conducted in Italy, its results seem to resonate very well with European and non European countries, as verified by presenting them at the recent Enterprise 2.0 Summit Paris


  • Online survey between July – Sept 2013 on 300 italian companies, both large and small, across major sectors
  • The study has addressed culture, organization, processes, technology, measurement to provide a 360° perspective on the state of enterprise collaboration.

Main dimensions analyzed

  • Importance
  • Business drivers
  • Internal sponsors
  • Available budget
  • Outcomes measurement
  • Integration with processes
  • Organizational maturity
  • Best and worst practice in top performers
  • Adoption of collaborative tools

Negli ultimi mesi mi è capitato di leggere e analizzare moltissimi report dedicati al social business e a come i nuovi strumenti digitali stiano modificando i contesti organizzativi nei quali – quotidianamente – ci muoviamo.
Come spesso emerge esiste però uno scollamento tra quanto si legge sui report e quanto in realtà sperimentiamo.
In questa direzione, una delle domande che mi viene fatta più spesso – anche quando in aula e mi capita di citare i grandi casi di successo – è proprio: “Ma in Italia?” 

Ciò che emerge è proprio questo: la mancanza di dati strutturati e sistematizzati sullo stato della social collaboration nel nostro paese.

Assieme a Emanuele Quintarelli ) abbiamo deciso di colmare – o perlomeno di provare – questo gap, cercando di raccogliere dati significativi, imparziali e completi sull’evoluzione di questo mercato nel nostro paese. 
In questa direzione abbiamo quindi voluto realizzare una survey che indagasse lo stato dell’arte, gli ostacoli all’adozione di tecnologie e strategie di questo tipo, i desiderata, le applicazioni concrete e i trend futuri.

La Social Collaboration Survey 2013 si concentra quindi su 4 dimensioni fondamentali per la diffusione della social collaboration: cultura, organizzazione e processi, tecnologia, misurazione.

Schermata 2013-07-22 alle 01.18.23

Con quale scopo?

I vantaggi dell’avere dati aggiornati sono molteplici, sia per i consulenti che si muovono in questo settore sia per le aziende che avrebbero modo di capire:

  • Lo stato dell’arte rispetto ad altri paesi nel mondo cercando un confronto arricchente ed evolutivo
  • Il loro posizionamento rispetto ad altre realtà nazionali comparabili
  • Quali siano le best practice e gli errori da evitare nel caso maturi una volontà nell’evolvere verso soluzioni di questo tipo
  • In che modo vengano allocati e distribuiti i budget all’interno di iniziative di questo tipo
  • In che modo si comportino le differenti industry e se siano rintracciabili dei trend trasversali o dei fattori differenzianti significativi
  • Quali sono le figure aziendali coinvolte all’interno di strategie e iniziative di social collaboration
  • Fino a che punto si possa investire in questa direzione nel nostro paese: sia in termini di ritorno economico sia in termini di percezione da parte degli utenti
  • Quale sia lo stato attuale della collaborazione all’interno delle aziende italiane
  • La penetrazione di tecnologie in ambito mobile e all’interno del contesto lavorativo quotidiano

E’ per questi motivi che abbiamo scelto di realizzare un progetto completamente gratuito, senza fini di lucro e gestito interamente nel nostro tempo libero. I nomi dei partecipanti saranno mantenuti anonimi mentre gli esiti della raccolta dei dati e dell’analisi (che si chiuderà a Settembre 2013) verrano resi pubblici e condivisi liberamente. 

Proprio perché il successo di questa iniziativa – che reputiamo molto interessante e valida – dipende da tutti, noi vi chiediamo uno sforzo comune, una vera e propria chiamata alle armi per completare la survey e per farla circolare tra i vostri contatti.

Questa iniziativa è mossa da una sincera sete di conoscenza e di volontà di aiutare aziende, manager e consulenti che hanno scelto di intraprendere la via della trasformazione digitale della propria organizzazione.

Cosa ne dite? Siete dei nostri?
Contiamo su di voi!

Ecco di nuovo il link e grazie in anticipo!
Qui trovate anche il post di Emanuele con i riferimenti dell’indagine.