In an earlier blog post I wrote about why SaaS will become the natural choice for organizations.
However what ensures the longevity of SaaS is the next group of CIO's who are in college or have recently joined the workforce. This crop will see Web 2.0 as a totally natural way of doing business as its what they do in their personal lives.
Storing files and documents, in Google, in Microsoft Live, social networking, wikis all are ingrained in this new generation and SaaS will become the obvious choice.
It appears the enterprise world is beginning to realize this.
An article by Heather Havenstein in ComputerWorld published today looks at how "Companies wrestle with tech demands of younger workers".
Chris Scalet, senior vice president and CIO of Merck & Co was quoted
Scalet, senior vice president and CIO of Merck & Co., noticed that as his daughter studied, she simultaneously listened to her iPod, sent text messages and browsed through pages of the Facebook social network.
"How she will work in the future will be very different from how we work today," Scalet said. "She is going to expect [collaboration] tools ... to be able to work. What scared me is that we don't think that way today as corporations. We think as baby boomers [about] this very traditional, structured, formal [work environment]."
Heather also states that IT executives are beginning to plan for the 80 Million children of baby boomers entering the workforce.
In the November 15,2007 Edition of CIO Magazine , editor Elana Varon interviews Gary Hamel,
Gary states that
If you're a CIO, you need to spend a lot of time out on the fringes of the Web because that's where the innovation is taking place. You need to spend a lot of time with people under 25 years old
These current trends all vindicate the work practices (which are contrary to traditional enterprise policies) I have in place with my development teams. I place no restrictions on Social Networking, IMing, private emailing, reading and writing blogs and wikis for my staff, in fact they are strongly encouraged. There are multiple benefits to organizations with these types of practices.
1. We don't really have set hours for working, and if an urgent customer issue,request or deadline arises in the middle of the night, our staff are easily contactable via these mechanisms and collaboration at midnight is often a common thing, our customers are often surprised at how often we deliver overnight. Cell phones are very seldom used in these situations apart from reading emails.
2. Often new product and usage ideas are generated by the usage of Social Computing tools at work and at home
3. Collaboration is taken to a new level, any "productivity loss" from social computing is more than made up by the improvements in communications and the reduction of miscommunication.
4. New staff members feel more comfortable contributing ideas and questions, as they are in an environment very similar to their "college social network".
Once again I will say:
This Web 2.0 generation will provide the tech leaders of the near future,the Cloud is here to stay.