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How to “collaboration enable” your business process

- March 23, 2009 - 4 Comments

Low Adoption. Poor economies of scale. High Cost. No ROI. Failure. Difficult to imagine these words being used to describe a collaboration initiative around knowledge & document management systems, enterprise portals and business intelligence data warehouses. Yet, because some project managers focus on the information associated with collaboration and not the process of collaboration – they end up missing the core attribute of true collaboration – people. Ultimately, they miss their mark and fail to take off, despite the best intentions. What is collaboration? At Cisco, we define collaboration as the “art of teamwork” – people – rolling up their sleeves to solve problems, create opportunities, share and learn from one another – people. How do people collaborate? With their senses. They look, discuss, listen, and touch. Think about your last team meeting – it probably started with a hand-shake (touch), a smile to invite debate, brief introductions so everyone could speak and be heard – then the work began. That’s collaboration, and that’s why Cisco has been investing in the equipment, software and services to capture, transmit and stream voice and video and link these human dimensions of collaboration to documents, data and business applications.How does one make collaboration an integral aspect of their business. Enter Collaboration-enabled Business Transformation (CEBT). CEBT includes a wide array of web-services including call control for voice, video on demand and streaming video for images, presence for intelligent routing, and a variety of click-to-connect services such as chat, email, web-conference, and voice calling. CEBT has the power to literally transform processes – reducing human latency, improving productivity and driving employee effectiveness.How to get started:– Establish a clear Unified Collaboration and Communication-enabled Business Transformation Vision — Form true interdisciplinary process-oriented communities of employees, customers, partners and IT — Working closely with end-users; IT should begin by establishing a unified collaboration platform of enabling technologies and tools — Standardize and consolidate IT – lean and green — Integrate existing applications – low-risk efficiency gains — Launch new collaborative business processes – ROI effectiveness gains– IT as the enterprise venture capitalist – seed multiple, small, low-cost, projects — Few will fail — Many will succeed — Most will be transformational– Review, prune and replenish your unified collaboration portfolio — The right end to end platform will handle the integration, security and end-user adoption — Cisco Unified CollaborationWhat are you seeing. How will collaboration benefit your organization most? What processes or workflows are you seeking to collaboration enable? By Bryan Tantzen, director of customer business transformation, Cisco Unified Communications

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  1. I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don't know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.Joannah

  2. I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don't know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.Sarah

  3. These are tools, not the solution. We are the solution, depending on how we use the tool.

  4. Bryan,I agree that most collaboration initiative fail due to a lack of attention to the collaboration process and failing to create a free form environment for communicating. Could you tell me who the product manager is at Cisco for the Collaboration product (Enterprise Social Software). Thanks