Hello again everyone and welcome to my fourth post in our series The Support Outsider, a unique look into VMware from the point of view of an outsider (that's me), Intern Moses Masih.
As I settle into my role here I realize I am working in a global team, the Knowledge management team. Members of the team are spread across the globe, in Canada, America, Ireland and India. As mentioned in an earlier post, one of the challenges being in global teams is communicating effectively with the group. This week I am going to briefly discuss one of the tools, Socialcast, that my team uses to achieve effective communication.
People in the team work in different time zones and hence reaching the team quickly with new data, in case of an emergency or just sharing a new idea, can be challenging. VMware uses Socialcast to provide an enterprise social network to their teams which allows for quick and effective communication among each team as well as the organization.
Email is good for team communication and I talk with a lot of team members using Email, but Socialcast with all its features is just too dynamic when compared to email and in my opinion surpasses monotonous email based communications. Each team can make its own group in Socialcast and within the groups members can post data, ideas, pictures, embed videos, start discussions using threads, etc. (Check out http://www.socialcast.com/ to find out more)
I post weekly work updates in my teams group page, describing what I worked on and learned in the past week and the challenges I faced; so does the rest of the team. Members can comment on any post and we often give feedback to other team members on their work log posts. I find this very useful as the team often shares links with me to useful online resources.
Any user can start a group in Socialcast and though I haven’t started any myself I am a member of a lot of them. The different groups can be team groups, project groups and also groups based on interests. People interested in a particular topic can start a group for that topic or find one that already exists. I am a member of a lot of interest groups and as the discussions in any group focus on the relevant topics, groups are a good way for getting information on particular topics.
Adapting to Socialcast was easy. Having used other social media outlets for personal use helped but Socialcast is very user friendly already. Much like the features in other social media tools, Socialcast allows users to like/dislike content, comment on content, use @mentions to mention a co-worker in a post. I was already used to these constructs, and other common functionalities which greatly helped me in getting used to Socialcast.
Easy accessibility allows for quicker communication, with Socialcast being available on a lot of different mobile platforms I sometimes even post content or check out any updates in my groups from my Android phone.
Overall, in my opinion Socialcast is a very cool enterprise social networking solution which greatly improves team communication and has helped me in connecting with my global team, which now seems almost impossible to do using just Email.
If you want to try Socialcast out for your organization you can go here http://www.socialcast.com/pricing and sign up to get the full Socialcast experience free for up to 50 users.
Here are some hints and tips from the Knowledge Base to help you get started quickly!
- Creating a group in Socialcast (2015388)
- Group type options when creating a new group in Socialcast (2015378)
- Creating an Idea in Socialcast (2014486)
- Accessing Socialcast on mobile devices and smartphones (2030057)
- Socialcast Mobile Apps FAQ (2008689)
Be sure to come back next week to check on my adventures as I go exploring the world of virtualization some more. Thanks for your time.