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October 27, 2009updated 23 Aug 2016 3:15pm

Enterprise collaboration turns to Web 2.0

Making the switch poses headache for organisations

By Janine Milne

Enterprise collaboration tools will be primarily Web 2.0-based with four years, posing major problems for organisations as entrenched users cling onto old-style working methods, warned a Gartner survey.

Some 80% of enterprise collaboration platforms will live on the browser by 2013 as wiki-style working gains more traction. But managing the switch from document-based to browser-based working will create a major headache for firms, as Jeff Mann, research vice president at Gartner explained.

Users who have spent years primarily working with PC-based office automation suites such as Microsoft Office, tend to favour the file orientation and can find it unnerving to work in a Web 2.0 environment where people can be editing the same page at the same time, said Mann.

Equally, those in the wiki camp may struggle to keep to the more structured requirements of document repositories.

Wiki won’t completely oust old methods, however, as there are some tasks that require work to be signed off sequentially that do not suit the free-form style of wiki. Gartner also pointed out the trend for vendors to take a hybrid approach. For example, Web 2.0 cohorts Google Apps, Adobe buzzwords and Zoho can also work with files, either by downloading them to work offline or by organising the content online in files.

Gartner recommended firms take a softly-softly approach to introducing change to reluctant users, explaining the business reasons for the switch and recognising which model suits which situation.

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