In a recent interview, Geoffrey Moore explained that embracing Systems of Engagement and integrating them with the traditional Systems of Record will prepare enterprises for the competitive Future of IT. But, what are Systems of Engagement? Are these systems that compile the right information at the right time based upon the data available in the Systems of Record? Perhaps. Let us take a look at three real-life scenarios that highlight why Systems of Engagement are vital to enterprises looking to be key players in the future of Enterprise IT.
1. Customer in waiting. In this scenario, a customer calls the service provider with a problem that needs fixing right away. However, customer is kept waiting …
- System of Record: The frustrated customer lodges a complaint. The service provider takes remedial measures in due course with a letter of apology.
- System of Engagement: Hourly tweets from the frustrated customer go viral reaching the CEO who pings the CIO who says, “I don’t maintain Twitter!” CEO says: “Well, you do now!” This is why I say CIOs need a System of Engagement with CMOs.
2. Elusive Santa. In this scenario, an express courier leaves a note on the front door of a house after attempting to deliver a package.
- System of Record: The hectic work schedule of the home owner results in the package not being picked up in a timely fashion. The courier sends the package back to the sender.
- System of Engagement: The courier contacts the recipient through their preferred channel of communication – Instant Messaging. Recipient redirects courier to deliver it to the neighbor. The Return on Information just went up for the courier, thanks to this System of Engagement.
3. "And the Oscar goes to.” The members of the Academy have seen all the nominated movies and cast their ballots in the respective categories. The ballots have been tabulated and the winners have been determined. The world waits with baited breath.
- System of Record. Each movie-goer picks their winners, based on their individual perception, synthesized with the perception of a few others in their network, and watches the ceremony.
- System of Engagement. Movie buffs share their opinions in social media. Enterprises of the future leverage the right tools to conduct sentiment analysis on these messages to formulate the prevailing pulse of the global audience. Winning entries trend even before they are formally announced.
In all these scenarios, the intelligent application of data is already available through Systems of Engagement, building upon data available in Systems of Record. No new systems had to be built. It is all about using the existing data in a timely fashion with the proper context.
My daughter came back from school and told me how she loved just texting her response to the question that her teacher posed along with others in the class. All the responses were being collected and displayed in real-time on a monitor, and the teacher engaged the students in an analysis of the responses to identify patterns and different ways of thinking. This System of Engagement is much, more accurate than a traditional show of hands, and much more immediate than a poll of the class.
It only goes to show us: Opportunities to create Systems of Engagement are all around us, and we better get used to them. My daughter – a high-school senior – and her teacher are. Why can’t we?
How about you? How are evolving to Systems of Engagement in your domain? I would be interested to know what you do, and why you choose certain systems over others.