In this guest post for Ethnography Matters, Mike Gotta from Cisco Systems, makes the case for bringing the human back into enterprise software design and development, starting out with enterprise social networking (ESN). The introduction to the post is by ethnographer Tricia Wang.
“One of the biggest problems with ESNâ€™s right now is that developers and trainers donâ€™t account for culture. Often times ESNs are implemented with little understanding of the companyâ€™s social and tech context. For example, companies try to incentivize employees to fill out social profiles, or blog, or join communities, but often employees donâ€™t understand why, or whatâ€™s in it for them to change their behavior to collaborate in such a public way. The result â€“ slow adoption of the ESN. Can better design practices solve the problem? How can ethnographers help fill the context and cultural gap?”