A new Redwood Capital Group industry report released the first week of June 2013 focuses on Enterprise Collaboration and Social Software. The thirty-two page report includes Market Trends, Competitive Landscape, M&A Activity, Private Financing, Valuation Trends, and Emerging Private Companies, including Traction Software. You can download a free copy of this and related industry reports from the Redwood Capital Sector Focus page.
Download and read the full report for carefully drawn analysis and insights on Market Trends and Competitive Landscape in Enterprise Collaboration and Social Software as well as detailed summaries of relevant M&A and investment transactions for 2010-2012.
A few Market Trends and Competitive Landscape highlights:
"Socialization and collaboration technologies are currently reshaping the established enterprise collaboration market as well as creating whole new categories of offerings, especially around private social platforms. In addition, many other enterprise applications such as CRM and unified communications are heavily transformed through the incorporation of new technologies including group messaging & activity feeds, document collaboration, and analytics. Much of this change is being driven by the consumerization of IT and the incorporation of social technologies. As businesses look to leverage the benefits of improved “connecting” and “network building” that employees have experienced with Facebook and other social solutions, a convergence is occurring between the enterprise social software and collaboration markets..."
"It is important to think of socialization and collaboration, not just as point solutions, but rather as activities that encompass a wide range of functionalities that can be incorporated into many enterprise applications. Further, we think the idea of “social networking” for the enterprise has given people the impression that these applications are simply chatty online versions of the proverbial water cooler. In fact, many tasks and projects that must be completed in a business context require connecting and collaborating with other works both inside and outside the enterprise. The concept of “social software” in this regard is really around providing a software platform that helps coordinate these connections around a work activity (such as processing a customer complaint or processing a claim or new account, which requires both connecting with other works as well as completing certain documentation. As a result, private social platforms simply provide a useful means for workers to comment, share, collaborate and follow the flow or completion of a project or task."
"Later is this document, we discuss the differences between people-centric platforms vs document centric platforms. While some platforms may truly be document centric (such as an online whiteboarding platform) or people centric (such as a CRM related application), we suspect that over time, many platforms will integrate the concept of both the social as well as the document management side to provide solutions that significantly improve the efficiencies with which workers can perform their daily activities."
From Market Growth
"While the enterprise social and collaboration software sector is experiencing substantial growth, as with any new, emerging area, trying to get an accurate estimate of the market size or potential, is challenging. A recent report by IDC estimated that “enterprise social networks and collaboration” will grow from $800 million to $4.5 billion by 2016. While this certainly implies robust growth, we believe there are a number of relevant categories the IDC study did not include, such as project management software and certain vertical-oriented solutions, which only make the opportunity that much larger. Project management and vertical solutions are particularly important sectors as we expect players focusing on specific industry verticals or functional areas to offer highly compelling ROI propositions to CIOs and thus remain competitive against the larger, horizontal platforms offered by established enterprise software vendors."
from Competitive Landscape
"Since the offerings from players in the enterprise social and collaboration sectors include a wide range of differing features, it can be difficult to compare the competitors and their platforms and even determine the categories in which they really compete. Further, the terms “collaboration” and “social software” are used with widely different meanings, each often with the intent of including the other. However, socialization and collaboration are different, and while being closely related, involve different functionalities. In order to help break down the space, we find it useful to look at the core focus of an application. In general, most solutions fall into two core areas of focus: document-centric or people-centric."
"Document-centric offerings are based on collaboration, content or data sharing, or presenting content (documents, files, presentations). Players in this area often fall into categories traditionally thought of as “collaboration”..."
Key Document-centric subcategories: Group Collaboration Workspaces, Project Management Systems, Electronic Calendar and Time Management; Online Proofing & Editing; Mind-mapping and Diagramming; Conferencing. [see report for subcategory descriptions]
"People-centric solutions are focused on human interactions and are designed to make these interactions more productive. While people- centric offerings may include some document- centric tools, their core focus is on human interaction..."
Key People-centric subcategories: Private Social Platforms; Social Task Management; Social CRM; Peer Review & Ideation; Other Social Tools [see report for subcategory descriptions]
On Social Task Management: "Social task management, while similar to document-centric project management solutions, is a people-centric distinction. Many private social platforms are essentially focused on task management so this category is also perhaps just a slight narrowing of the broader private social platform concept discussed in the point above. While many of the tasks workers perform focus on a document, email or form, much of this work is often done in collaboration with others. As collaboration and private social platforms integrate these two aspects, many project or task management systems become as much people-centric as document-centric."
For more information, please contact the author:
Russell Crafton, Partner
885 Third Avenue, 25th Floor
New York, NY 10022
May 2013 | Getting Work Done with Social Task Management
May 2013 | TeamPage listed as key product in Technavio's Global Enterprise Social Networking Market Report
7 May 2013 | Real Story Group's Updated Traction TeamPage Evaluation in Enterprise Collaboration and Social Software Report
7 Oct 2011 | Jacob Morgan - Emergent Collaboration Vendor Review: Traction Software
Blog1883: Laser focused E2.0, without the risk? Get Traction!
Traction Software Inc (along with its Traction TeamPage product) has been recognized as a key player in TechNavio's upcoming report on the Global Enterprise Social Networking market 2012-2016. TechNavio analysts forecast "the Global Enterprise Social Networking Software market to grow at a CAGR of 51.94 percent over the period 2012-2016." They continue: "one of the key factors contributing to this market growth is the increased requirement of intranet interactivity among multiple teams in an organization. The market has also been witnessing an increased use of mobile enterprise social networking for sales activities. However, the risk of confidential information leakage could pose a challenge to the growth of this market."
This requirement for intranet interactivity and confidentiality led Traction Software to offer TeamPage in in both cloud hosted and easily deployed on-premise forms. For the intranet use case, the need for information security led Traction Software to introduce a moderation capability with TeamPage 4.0. The trend toward increased teamwork was a driver for TeamPage's deeply integrated action tracking and project management starting with TeamPage 5.1, extended to task, tag, discuss and share information stored in external line of business systems as well as the public web and private intranets.
To learn more about the Technavio report, please visit Global Enterprise Social Networking market 2012-2016. The PDF will be available in June.
Alan Lepofsky @alanlepo of Constellation Research coined Social Task Management last summer to describe a trend he saw in December 2011 as task management started to enter Enterprise 2.0 systems. Lepofsky's presentation at E2.0 Boston 2012 highlighted Traction TeamPage as a social business platform with a native (versus integrated) task management (slide 34). Luis Suarez @elsua does a fantastic job of summarizing key points in Social Task Management - When Social Business Got Down to Work. Later in the year (October 2012), Constellation Research published Lepofsky's research as Getting Work Done with Social Task Management. The research speaks to problems with traditional standalone task management systems which create top down choke points, lose context, limit collaboration and create information silos. Lepofsky argues that collaboration is at the core of social task management while describing the many benefits.
You can learn more about how Tasks work within the social and collaborative fabric of TeamPage in Action Tracking and Social Software: Meet Project Management (a post on Traction Software's initial project management capabilities released with TeamPage 5.1 in November 2010). The TeamPage Project Mastery Video is also a terrific introduction to TeamPage's social task management model. See also Greg Lloyd's The Future of Work Platforms: Like Jazz from February 2011.
The Real Story Group's Kashyap Kompella @kashyapkompella posted an update describing RSG's new version of their Enterprise Collaboration and Social Software Evaluations research covering twenty-five key software vendors. The new version includes a major update for the Traction TeamPage section, including TeamPage project management, action tracking, TeamPage's ability to span and connect systems of record, and the ability to embed TeamPage discussions in other Web applications.
Kompella remarks that TeamPage is unique in that it's "best thought of as a platform to build custom collaboration applications around interconnected pieces of information." Check out Kompella's blog post, and follow the links to get the full report.
Our experience with customers reinforces the Real Story Group analysis of broad TeamPage scenario fits and strengths, including the ability to configure TeamPage to match the needs of specific business use case and organizations. TeamPage's architecture and Traction Software's experience make it simple to configure TeamPage in days - not weeks or months - and easily extend TeamPage as desired.
See also Jordan Frank's Laser focused E2.0, without the risk? Get Traction! blog post on Real Story Group's E20 Marketplace Analysis.
May 10, 2012
· Posted by Jordan Frank
I really like how Kashya Kompella from the Real Story Group offered a great dose of context for his E2.0 Marketplace Analysis Q2 2012: "Slightly modifying what the ancient Greeks said, you cannot dip your finger twice in the same (activity) stream." Simply said, there is not a lot of room for risk when an enterprise makes an attempt at an E2.0 effort, whether they are trying to build knowledge in a wiki, approach project management from a perspective managers actually like, or wrap up the whole effort with blogs, discussion, and a social networking layer on top.
In his 4D chart below, Kompella grades market players based on vendor business and product risk. Unlike most quadrant analyses, this is a case where being high upper right is not good.
By way of example, perhaps he grades Newsgator as low vendor and high product risk because they've been around a long time (vendor stability) but their product focus has changed entirely three times (from RSS client to RSS Server to Social layer on SharePoint).
The Vendor and Product risk appears general as the color of the circle also demonstrates an area of risk based on the vendor's focus on the E2.0 market. Oracle is the lowest rated on product risk, but they are colored white to indicate a very low focus on E2.0. So, perhaps Oracle is a good choice for your next database, but don't hold your breath if you are counting on them for your E2.0 platform.
Traction Software and our product Traction TeamPage show up low and to the left (low product and vendor risk) in a cluster with Microsoft and Oracle. However, we also show a Black circle (compared to White for Oracle and Purple for Microsoft) demonstrating laser focus on the Enterprise 2.0 market - as has been our focus since our founding and long track record.
Of course, none of this matters if the platform isn't any good. This chart doesn't say much about the product itself except for its focus and the rate at which its being overhauled, which can be a sign of innovation (good) but it also may warn of a sloppy underlying platform or poor vision as new capabilities are added. Traction TeamPage was built from the start as a journaling and editing system - which laid ground for every E2.0 "feature phase" starting with Blogs and then leading to Wiki, MicroBlogging, Discussion, Social Bookmarking, RSS, Project Management and User Profiles / Social Networking.
To gauge quality, there are ample analysts who've weighed in on that matter, showing TeamPage has a stable platform upon which we've been able to innovate successfully over the last decade. Here are a few recent indicators:
- Forbes.com contributor Haydn Shaughnessey says: "Traction, for my money, is the best conceived collaboration suite for companies that have a technical development requirement." He cites Traction Software as an example of a business that successfully competes with large companies like IBM by retaining: "... close attention to client needs, a personal desire to explore changes in the work environment, and a desire to see those reflected in the platform."
- The 9th Annual MIT Sloan CIO Symposium has announced Traction Software as one of ten finalists for the 2012 Innovation Showcase as its Traction TeamPage product represents a cutting edge B2B solution that combines the strong value and innovation to enterprise IT.
- CTOLabs adds Traction Software to its companies of note list, "firms we believe enterprise technologists should track":
- Jacob Morgan from Chess Media Group says: I’ve seen the Traction product a few times now I have to say that I really like it and not just for small and medium size businesses. Traction offers an amazing search integration feature which many large vendors can’t even come close to replicating."
So, if you want a platform that rocks and remains cutting edge in the E2.0 marketplace, all without introducing vendor and product risk, Get Traction! And do it risk free as we just introduced new hosting options and the opportunity to try it free for 30 days, then pay monthly. Check it out.
CTOLabs adds Traction Software to its companies of note list, "firms we believe enterprise technologists should track": The future of work:
collaboration, conversation, identity, work product, action tracking and activity streams in context, coupled by permission-aware deep search, spanning systems of record and transactional business systems. Traction TeamPage connects people, actions, what you create or find in TeamPage, the public Web, your company’s intranet and your line of business systems, simply and securely. » Read the full quote
"I’ve seen the Traction product a few times now I have to say that I really like it and not just for small and medium size businesses. Traction offers an amazing search integration feature which many large vendors can’t even come close to replicating." Chess Media Group Principal and author Jacob Morgan just started a weekly series of concise, consistent, and even-handed public reviews of vendors in the emergent collaboration / Enterprise 2.0 space. Traction Software is honored to chosen for the second review in Jacob's series. Jacob asks wide-ranging questions on overall direction, along with practical questions on integration, support, pricing, maintenance, time to go live, technology, focus, capabilities, customers, key differentiating factors from competition, along with Jacob's candid take.
Jacob continues: "I think their approach to using search as the backbone behind collaboration is also very unique, in fact they are the only vendor that I have spoken to which highlights search and discusses it in such an integral way. I like the focus of not having to integrate various systems together which requires duplicating and then syncing content but I also wonder how deep the search functionality can go into things such as billing and invoicing systems, service request systems, or ERP/CRM systems. The platform itself is very intuitive and easy to use, everything extraneous seems to have been removed but without compromising the UI or the functionality of the platform. I also think their pricing model is also quite attractive." » Read Jacob's full review and Greg Lloyd's comment.
See Connected Work
Related Traction Software Introduces Social Enterprise Web
Bill Ives AppGap Review analyzes Traction Software's E2.0 Boston 2011 TeamPage Attivio Plus and Social Enterprise Web annoucement. Ives says: "Using search as a lever to span silos and system of record makes their native content addressable and actionable in place without import or conversion. This is similar to the way search loosely couples content across many sources on the public Web, but focused on a business intranet." Ives also reviews project dashboard and activity stream capabilities introduced with Traction TeamPage Release 5.2, saying: "I also like what they are doing with Activity Streams as I think this is one of the most important features of an Enterprise 2.0 platform." » Read the Full Story
See related Traction Software Introduces Social Enterprise Web
Traction® TeamPage 5.2 Introduces Dashboards for Action Tracking, Project and Case Management
Analyst Peter O'Kelly comments on KMWorld's Marrying deep search and navigation saying "...While it may not (yet…) be trendy to be the market-leading collaborative hypertext journaling platform, I believe that’s what the Traction team has created, and that TeamPages’s underlying architecture and flexibility, especially when used in conjunction with Attivio for faceted search and navigation, make it especially powerful for the various types of tools and services (workspaces, blogs, wikis, activity streams, tagging, tasks, etc.) now commonly associated with “social” software/services." » Read the full post
See related 22 Jun 2011 | KMWorld - Marrying deep search and collaboration
21 June 2011 | Traction Software Introduces Social Enterprise Web
Traction TeamPage customers Alcoa Fastening Systems and Ensign Bickford Aerospace & Defense are featured in this independent Deloitte research report: Social Software for Business Performance (.pdf) - The missing link in social software: Measurable Business improvements by John Hagel III of the Deloitte Center for the Edge. See video interview with John Hagel and a Web version of the report, Metrics that Matter, published by Deloitte University Press.
"The paper highlights the experience of one early adopter, Alcoa Fastening Systems, which has significantly improved employee productivity -- achieving a 61 percent reduction in time required for compliance activities -- by leveraging social [Traction TeamPage] software tools." - Deloitte 23 Feb 2011 press release.
This graphic explains the very direct impact between the reduced time spent on compliance activities as the number of wiki pages were created in TeamPage.
The Deloitte summary states: "Senior executives are skeptical of the value of social software. Their reluctance is understandable but self-defeating." Deloitte Center for the Edge’s paper, “Social Software for Business Performance” discusses how companies "can leverage social software to significantly enhance business performance in the short-term and transform it in the long-term. Early adopters of social software have the potential to reap financial rewards and develop skills and experience that can help build a stronger competitive position over time. Social software has unique capabilities to address current operating challenges and improve operating metrics." » Download a free copy (.pdf) of the Deloitte report. » Read the Deloitte press release.
Customer quotes from the Deloitte report include:
- “Traction Software is the place where informal work gets done.”
- “With Traction Software I can post meeting notes and assign action items to individuals. Then, they can go into the tool and write comments to update the group on the status of their action items as well as post deliverables. It greatly increases transparency and streamlines communications.”
- “What sold me on Traction Software is I realized how it can help me do my job better. Traction helps me get work done faster and allows me to communicate more effectively with my colleagues.”
- “With Traction, people take ownership for their area of expertise on the tool. They provide help to other projects if they have the knowledge needed to contribute.”
- “With Traction, people are pulled in to solve problems based on their expertise on short notice. Before Traction, we simply weren’t able to do this.”
- “Traction has increased transparency around resource allocation and made it easier for managers to find the expertise they need quickly.”
See TeamPage Solutions: Quality Management and TeamPage Solutions: Project Management
Traction TeamPage 5.1: Social Software, Meet Project Management
Traction Software Customers and quotes
3 Aug 2011 | Alcoa Fastening Systems: What were you doing at 7:15AM Saturday July 2, 2011? Joe Crumpler was working.
Enterprise 2.0 and Observable Work: Brian Tullis and Joe Crumpler, Burton Group Catalyst 2010 Santa Diego
February 16, 2011
· Posted by Greg Lloyd
Yesterday I read GigaOM analyst and editor Haydn Shaughnessy's Future of Work Platforms report (registration required, free seven day trial available). I commented: Haydn -- A very thoughtful and useful analysis – a combination that’s all too rare! I’m particularly happy to see your thoughts on observable work (see the full report for Haydn's excellent analysis).
Ever since Jon Udell coined the term, it struck me as good way to talk about practical benefits and a business purpose for collaboration. In my opinion it helps by pealing back issues of privacy in context and activity streams, along with subtleties required to support the social dance of getting things done, dealing with exceptions, and staying aware of what’s going around you without getting swamped. This is much closer to jazz than the world of canned business transactions. It requires a level of attention to ease of use and user experience that’s just as important but in many ways more challenging to do well in a business context than for the public Web.
I also thank you for your careful analysis and kind words about Traction Software.
I've thought a lot about how to describe the relationship between Observable Work and the style of action tracking, coordination and agile project management used by TeamPage customers like Brian Tullis and Joe Crumpler, as well Traction Software folk. When you watch a skilled team in action, it's like watching a great jazz group - there are themes, there is structure, and there are limits, but a team shines in individual excellence combined with coordination, improvisation, innovation, handling exceptions, and seemingly effortless awareness of where others are and where they're headed.
Traction TeamPage 5.1 aims to support this performance model. Bill Ives captures the idea well: "The action tracking concept is not old school project management with Gantt charts and resource allocation. It is allowing employees to manage their work tasks and make this management transparent to those who need to know...This is the action tracking part of project management for the regular employee, not the program management office. It brings this activity into the enterprise 2.0 world as every task is treated as an object for comments, RSS, and made searchable to those with the proper permissions."
Every business activity involves some measure of action planning and tracking. People have lived with action tracking systems that range from a list on the back of an envelope, to getting things done style planning, to multilevel project plans for large and complex products like aircraft.
The TeamPage 5.1 action tracking model focuses on making it simple for individuals and teams to plan and coordinate the daily, weekly and monthly activities that drive effective teamwork. This level of coordination can quickly become too complex for the simplest systems, but too detailed – and close to real life – to be effectively modeled, tracked and managed in real time using software designed solely for top down project modeling and planning.
In my opinion, the big difference is action tracking built in to the natural flow of work. This makes daily life easier rather than more complicated.
- Collect individual tasks into projects to make summaries easy to report up, and top down progress easy to track by project or by individual.
- Tag any paragraph as a task and later dive down by person, task, project or milestone to make personal tracking and maintaining awareness much easier.
- Click a name and link to a colleague's profile to see tasks, activity and status from their perspective.
- Pop a quick question into a status window to make communication quick, effective and observable.
- Add a comment to a task (status message, page, post or paragraph) to raise an issue or suggest a solution, to make exceptions much easier to recognize and handle.
All of this works with TeamPage's advanced search, notification, and a collaboration model that puts tasks, status, conversations and posts in a business context, organizing communication by space for those who have permission to read, while using spaces to protect all content in client, partner or internal spaces that require privacy.
Watch the video to see what I mean.
I've worked for the US Naval Research Lab managing parts of very big projects for the US Navy, and as a member of small startup teams. I believe that at the working level the same model supports effective teamwork where bottom up activities meet top down plans as the foundation of projects of any size.
We're seeing first results from TeamPage customers and Traction Software using TeamPage 5.1 integrated action tracking and the response has been great. Look for updates here, on Twitter, or join the TeamPage Forum and the live conversation - or to should I say jam? (to borrow a great term from IBM).
GigaOm Pro analyst Haydn Shaughnessy writes "The enterprise collaboration space has entered an exciting new phase of collaboration. New software and applications are coming to market, as are new concepts for how to work and communicate in the knowledge age." Shaughnessy analyzes the new diversity of work, the human element, and provides key takeaways as well as reviews of hosted and E2.0 collaborative platforms. The free summary includes complete table of contents [ including Traction Software in the E2.0 Platform space ]. A GigaOm Pro subscription is required to view the full report, with a seven day Free Trial available. » Read the summary see also The Future of Work Platforms: Like Jazz
Gleanster today announced the publication of three new "Gleansight" benchmark reports, on Mobile Marketing, Business Intelligence and Enterprise Collaboration. Drawing from the experiences of more than five hundred companies, the reports offer a comprehensive look at how Top Performers are implementing each of these initiatives to achieve their desired business objectives.
The Gleansight benchmark reports, along with related Deep Dive analyst perspectives, can be downloaded for free. Each report runs approximately 25 pages and consists of seven sections: Topic Overview, Reasons to Implement, Value Drivers, Challenges, Performance Metrics, Success Stories and the Vendor Landscape. The latter section includes company descriptions, analyst commentaries and comparative rankings (when available) across four key dimensions of evaluation.
For the report on Enterprise Collaboration, the vendors include: Atlassian; Blogtronix; Cisco Systems; Ektron; EMC Corporation; EPiServer; FatWire Software; Huddle; IBM; IGLOO Software; INgage Networks; Jive Software; Leverage Software; Liferay; Microsoft; Mzinga; NewsGator; Novell; Open Text; Oracle; PBworks; Realcom U.S.; Saba; Salesforce.com; Siteforum; Socialtext; Spigit; Telligent; Traction Software, Inc.; TWiki; XWiki; Yammer.
About Gleanster Gleanster is a market research firm that benchmarks best practices in technology-enabled business initiatives. Gleanster generates actionable insights that allow companies to make smart business decisions and match their needs with vendor solutions. The research, which draws from the experiences of tens of thousands of industry practitioners, is predicated on four guiding principles: specificity, objectivity, brevity and clarity. Gleanster ascertains how Top Performers achieve their desired business objectives - and how Everyone Else can, too. For more information, please visit www.gleanster.com.
For the original version on PRWeb visit: www.prweb.com/releases/prweb2011/2/prweb8114901.htm
Bob Gourley, CTOLabs writes: "This list reviews the companies regarded as having very high potential to change the way IT is done in large enterprises. For a company to be on the list they must have a currently shipping capability that appears to be a real game changer in enterprise IT." Traction Software is listed as one of the Disruptive small to medium companies versus IT Powerhouses like IBM, Microsoft and Oracle. » Read the Full Story
Bill Ives AppGap Review of Traction TeamPage Release 5.1 focuses on Traction's new integrated action tracking and project management: "The action tracking concept is not old school project management with Gantt charts and resource allocation. It is allowing employees to manage their work tasks and make this management transparent to those who need to know...This is the action tracking part of project management for the regular employee, not the program management office. It brings this activity into the enterprise 2.0 world as every task is treated as an object for comments, RSS, and made searchable to those with the proper permissions. Traction has always had great granular security and this permission level technology is applied here, as well." » Read the Full Story
See related 9 Nov 2010 | Traction® TeamPage 5.1 Introduces Integrated Action Tracking For Improved Team Performance
London, November 19, 2010 Forrester Research, Inc. honored the six final 2010 Forrester Groundswell Award winners for excellence in effective use of social technologies to advance an organizational or business goal. Winners of the fourth annual Forrester Groundswell Awards in the International Business-to-Consumer (B2C) division were honored at Forrester's Marketing & Strategy Forum EMEA in London. "We're thrilled by the diversity and quality of the entries in this year's International Forrester Groundswell Awards," said Nate Elliott, principal analyst at Forrester. "With consumers worldwide embracing social technologies, the Groundswell is now global. The finalists and winners we've recognized — including local efforts on four continents and a number of truly global programs — are among the leaders in using social tools to reach and serve their customers." » Read the Forrester Press Release
The Borlaug Global Rust Initiative is an international project founded to help reduce the threat of something called ‘wheat rust’ – a crop disease that has the potential to devastate the world’s food supplies. Because the disease mutates as it spreads, scientists from different countries must work together to fight it, and they must do so quickly. The Knowledge Bank allows a small number of global wheat rust experts to rapidly share new knowledge with local biologists, agricultural organizations and NGOs – and then allows them all to collaborate on solutions to beating the disease. Hundreds of researchers in more than 50 counties use the Knowledge Bank every day to fight wheat rust and protect the world’s crops.
The Borlaug Global Research Initiative website globalrust.org is powered by Traction TeamPage with Traction's Attivio Advanced Search option.
See also 8 Nov 2010 | EContent - A Case of Life-Saving Collaboration
26 Feb 2010 | Great Wired Magazine story on Borlaug Global Rust Initiative
Traction TeamPage Customer Story Borlaug Global Rust Initiative
Analyst Bill Ives reviews Traction TeamPage Release 5.1 new Action Tracking capabilities. Bill includes screen shots of task, milestone and personal profile views along with his analysis. He says: "The action tracking concept is not old school project management with Gantt charts and resource allocation. It is allowing employees to manage their work tasks and make this management transparent to those who need to know. This is where the observable work comes it. I have seen considerable improvement in employee and team performance when their work becomes transparent to the right others. The spot light does wonders when applied correctly. ... I think that this complete collection of new capabilities builds on the strong platform already established to take it further into the ideal of enterprise 2.0. Here the activities of an organization are accessible to those who need to know and this transparency operates at the task or action level." » Read the Full Story
See also 9 Nov 2010 | Traction® TeamPage 5.1 Introduces Integrated Action Tracking For Improved Team Performance
Business and KM consultant Jack Vinson follows Jim McGee's suggestion and posts his own thoughts on Paula Thornton's video interview with Traction Software's Jordan Frank Vinson says: "The idea behind "responsibility to collaborate" is that the world of work has shifted from my value being solely about I know, though that is still important. Now it is just as important to spread the word and bring together my ideas with those of others in a more open way. This also plays at a group level, where collective responsibility to work together and learn from one another can elevate the level of conversation for people the next time they have an official business meeting. Imagine having issues established and discussed in an easily-accessible way (instead of behind closed doors or even at the water cooler)." » Read his full Knowledge Jolt with Jack post and watch the video.
For more video interviews and Traction User Group talks see the Traction User Group channel on Blip.tv and TUG 2009 Providence | Keynotes by Carmen Medina, Chris Nuzum and Stewart Mader
New Shoreham Consulting Managing Director Jim McGee encourages readers to watch and reflect on Paula Thornton's video interview with Traction Software's Jordan Frank McGee says: "You need to develop a well-tuned design sense to take full advantage of the technologies intended to support collaborative and creative knowledge work. You need to be especially careful to avoid the temptations to over-engineer the technology or the process. The examples that Jordan shares are rooted in the augmentation philosophies of Doug Engelbart rather than the automation philosophies of Frederick Taylor." » Read the full 7 Jan 2010 McGee's Musings post and watch the video.
For more video interviews and Traction User Group talks see the Traction User Group channel on Blip.tv and 12-15 Oct 2010 | Fifth Annual Traction User Group Meeting, TUG 2010 Newport
AppGap Analyst Bill Ives reviews Traction TeamPage Release 4.2 new capabilities, focusing on the Developer Release preview of Traction's Google Web Toolkit (GWT) based Proteus interface. Traction Software President Greg Lloyd demonstrated Proteus using Traction's production TeamPage server and content. Bill includes screen shots of Proteus Feed views that make it easy to scan and navigate status, new content, edits, tag and moderation actions by space or person - including aggregate roll-up views. Proteus' use of GWT technology makes updates and navigation speedy using automatically compiled web-browser optimized updates that are delivered incrementally. This makes navigation, inline editing and animation effects fast, simple and attractive as well as extensible and developer friendly. Bill concludes: "I think these are all very smart moves and makes Traction more attractive to large enterprise. There is the greater flexibility of interface through Google Web Toolkit, more robust search through Attivio, and heavy duty data management through Oracle. I am looking forward to seeing what they do next." » Read the Full Story
See also Introducing Proteus (demo) for brief tour and Proteus GWT Tech talk slides and interviews.
MIT Center for Digital Business principle research scientist Andrew McAfee references Traction Software President Greg Lloyd's Enterprise 2.0 Schism blog post in thinking about and responding to points raised in recent Enterprise 2.0 debates. McAfee does not believe that "... E2.0's tools, approaches and philosophies making managers, hierarchies, org charts and formal cross functional business processes obsolete," but does believe that "... ESSPs [ Emergent Social Software Platforms ] will have about as big an impact on the informal processes of the organization as large-scale commercial enterprise systems (ERP, CRM, Supply Chain, etc.) have had on the formal processes." A that's huge deal for organizations. » Read the Full Story
See also follow-on discussion: How big a deal is Enterprise 2.0? What do you mean by "Big"?
Burton Group Analyst Larry Cannell on Traction Software President Greg Lloyd's recent blog post: "This Enterprise 2.0 perspective is about bringing to bear the resources a company has to help people make the best decisions and improving the quality of their collective work. This is language even a pragmatic business manager can understand." Cannell would like to see more coverage of Enterprise 2.0 from a work based perspective. » Read the Full Story and more on Burton Group's Online Workplace Framework.
AppGap Analyst Bill Ives interviews Attivio CTO Sid Probstein and VP of Marketing Maryanne Sinville on Traction Software's selection of the Attivio Active Intelligence Engine™ to power Traction TeamPage advanced search and content navigation. Sid explains how Attivio's early binding and query-side JOIN operator allows TeamPage to "link security with content that matches the users query and permissions". Sid provides examples using Traction TeamPage Release 4.2 screenshots showing Attivio powered TeamPage permission aware search, faceted navigation and tag clouds, and discusses Attivio's sentiment analyzer and Classification Module. » Read the Full Story
Stuart Mader's Future Changes publishes a new Enterprise Wiki Software Guide. Mader identifies key Enterprise Wiki features and capabilities including: Workspaces, Permissions, User Management/LDAP, Notifications, Discussions and more. His summary for Traction TeamPage begins " Traction TeamPage is an enterprise wiki with the ability to host multiple workspaces, page level permissions, a rich text editor, threaded discussions, tagging, search, page and comment moderation, blogging, and templates... » Read the Full Enterprise Wiki Software Guide
Bersin & Associates' analyst David Mallon included a profile of Traction TeamPage in his report Enterprise Social Software 2009: Facts, Practical Analysis, Trends and Provider Profiles. The product profile shows "Complete or near complete functionality" in their Key Features Support, Collaboration, and Conversations score card. In the review of Traction TeamPage, the report says: "Traction also beats the odds when it comes to ability to innovate (the company is technologically at the top of the wiki field) and in providing customer support... Out of the box, Traction Software’s TeamPage application is the most fully featured social software platform covered in this study. It has the security and permissions models required to meet IT’s standards. The interface is clean and user-friendly." » Read The Full Report (Bersin Subscription or Payment Required)
Michael Sampson is a well-known and respected collaboration market analyst, consultant and author (of Microsoft Press's Seamless Teamwork: Using Microsoft SharePoint Technologies to Collaborate, Innovate, and Drive Business in New Ways), Michael speaks with authority when it comes to assessing collaboration platforms. Sampson's post on TeamPage this week, Traction TeamPage: The One System to Rule It All, explains the threaded discussion and social tagging model in TeamPage. This post was one outcome of his investigation into E2.0 security and - in this case - how a strong security model can enable productive cross-workspace interactions. He concludes "The Traction team have done a fantastic job building security in from the ground up, and the level of configuration is fantastic. If you are in the market for a collaboration platform, check out what they are offering...[an example with screenshots followed by]... I think that rocks! " » Read More
Bill Ives recaps a conversation about revenue growth records and offers a quick review of the new Traction TeamPage Live Blog interface. Ives writes "Because the interaction is supported in Traction, conversations you might otherwise have in IM or Twitter can take place securely within a TeamPage context with a robust content, tagging and discussion model." » Read the Full Story
Rob Kopolowitz states that "wikis are providing a valuable piece of the overall (Social Computing) strategy" in his April 2008 report titled "Social Computing Changes the Enterprise Landscape." The report profiles Traction TeamPage customer Enel North America and their use of Traction for collaboration and corporate communication on their Intranet. Get on the bandwagon, Koplowitz explained that 64% of enterprises surveyed have already started to invest in Wikis. » Read the full report (fee required)
When it comes to Collaborative Intelligence, Traction TeamPage makes the grade. Traction TeamPage stood apart in Fuld & Company's Intelligence Software Report which rated TeamPage's support as Very Good or Excellent in four out of five stages of the intelligence cycle. Fuld's Intelligence Software report offers insight into the CI process and technology preferences of "CI Super Tech Users" and then rates 13 software platforms that are used most often by Competitive Intelligence teams.
Note: Due to a conflict of interest, Fuld & Company is no longer distributing the report.
Kathleen Reidy of the451group wrote an update on Traction Software highlighting key new capabilities in new TeamPage 4.0 release. She wrote: Its TeamPage product is well respected on technical merits, and the latest release will continue to appeal to more-technical buyers that understand the complexity of maintaining and growing large wiki sites. » Read the full report » Read about What's New In 4.0
In a post congratulating Traction Software for its fourth consecutive selection as one of KMWorld's "100 Companies that Matter in Knowledge Management," Burton Group Analyst Peter O'Kelly writes: "I consider TeamPage the market-leading beyond-the-basics collaborative hypertext solution; it's a compelling example of the power of moving beyond files, to a world of hypertext information items/content components." » Read Peter O'Kelly's Reality Check Blog Entry. » Read Full KM 100 Press Release
Senior 451 Group analyst Kathleen Reidy published her second review of Traction Software and Traction TeamPage (first report published Feb 2007). Reidy's November 9, 2007 report describes Traction Software's new TeamPage 3.8 release, the implications of the release, and Traction Software's position in the market. » Read Full Story (Subscription Required)
Kaija Poysti of the Gilbane Group's Globalization Blog interviews Traction Software's Greg Lloyd. Kaija says that in companies the "multilingual environment is not only about translation, but about working with customers and colleagues whose native language is different from one's own. That can lead to a lot of miscommunication, and I think that nobody has even started to measure the real costs or missed sales arising from it."
She asks Greg about an interactive Glossary developed as a TeamPage wiki application for a global pharma customer. Greg describes the Glossary 'skin'. He says that it "gives the users versatile tools for handling terminology, such as looking up glossary terms and term definitions, guidance on how to use terms, and the possibility to comment on a term or ask questions about it, all terms being of course in both English and French. Changes and additions can be tracked with standard blog/wiki features, and the users can also subscribe to RSS/Atom feeds on updates." The Glossary skin is a plug-in extension to Traction TeamPage, and will be released to customers as a free plug-in example later this summer. » Read more in the full interview
Collaborative Thinking - Mike Gotta writes Jul 5, 2007: At the Enterprise 2.0 conference, I had the opportunity to interview Jordan Frank from Traction Software. The podcast can be listened to, or downloaded, here at the Burton Group Inflection Point site (along with other analyst podcasts).
For the third year in a row, Traction Software was included in KM World's list of 100 Companies that Matter in Knowledge Management. Hugh McKellar notes that the companies listed "distinguished themselves to our panel of judgets because of their role in creating, enhancing, or defining a market." » Read More
Named to the KMWorld 100 again in 2008 - fourth year in a row - see:
21 February 2008 | Traction Software Named to KMWorld's "100 Companies That Matter in Knowledge Management"
22 Feb 2008 | Peter O'Kelly's Reality Check - Traction TeamPage goes "Beyond-the-Basics" with Hypertext Collaboration
December 7, 2006
· Posted by Jordan Frank
Burton Group's Peter O'Kelly's report titled Hypertext and Compound/Interactive Document Models: Collaboration and Content Management Implications goes a long way towards explaining the benefits of and drive towards hypertext (a platform for blogs and wikis and more) as a backbone for collaborative work and communication. In the report, Burton Group says Traction TeamPage... "...comes closest to bringing the visions of hypertext pioneer Doug Engelbart to fruition, and that it is also a very useful leading indicator in terms of features other vendors will eventually add."
The report uses several Traction examples to illustrate the Hypertext Content Model.
In the report's synopsis, O'Kelly explains the concepts of hypertext and the how it can exploit compound and interactive documents models to benefit the user:
Hypertext is simply a better form-follows function fit (than print-centric approaches) for the way people actionally think and work. Compound documents facilitate focusing more on information work than on disparate technologies and tools, and foster more effective content management. Interactive document models are used to automatically and unobtrusively offer supplemental resources and actions in context, providing opportunities to more effectively leverage tools and metadata without disruptive context shifts.
In short, hypertext systems provide the most effective platform for information publishing and collaborative work. Traction's hypertext model combines multiple permissioned spaces that support collaborative editing in place (wiki style), collaboration over time (blog style) and a unique inline comment and permission model to capture communication in context.
Traction was inspired by the capabilities of 'classical' closed hypertext systems (NLS/Augment, FRESS, Xanadu, Intermedia, Notes, DynaText) which pre-dated the web, but required users to put everything the wanted to view and link within that closed system. And the only content you could link to was in the same siloed space versus Tim Berners-Lee's simple, open, scalable (but breakable) World Wide Web.
Unlike closed hypertext systems, Traction was built to work with the Web at every level: editing, publishing, browsing, linking, RSS/Atom syndication, search engine compatibility. But Traction's underlying Journal provides a secure, scalable space where internal links don't break, links can be followed in either direction, and fine grain comments, meta-data attributes, aggregated views, and faceted permissions just work. Blog and wiki's become presentation styles over a base which expands the capabilities of the ubiquitous web, see Weblog - the NLS Journal Revisited.
Traction can also display hypertext content using embedded page sections and dynamic multi-entry views while widgets display content from external sources or automatically link to external sources by tracking number, customer id or similar natural identifiers that people use every day.
See below for a Traction page section example of a compound document displaying all or part of the content from pages selected by tag match, content match, or other criteria. This example displays a snippet from other Burton Group papers which lead to the most recent report:
See also The Future of Work Platforms: Like Jazz
Reinventing the Web
Beyond blogs and wikis
The Evolution of Personal Knowledge Management
Enterprise 2.0 - Letting hypertext out of its box
And here's what Enterprise 2.0 looked like in 1968 | Dealing lightning with both hands...
Register for a free copy of the Report In its latest survey of 17 competitive intelligence software packages [including Traction TeamPage], Fuld & Co. urges executives to match packages based not only on their features, but also on how they fit with a company's approach and progress in utilizing competitive intelligence techniques...
The report ranks Traction Software highly in the Primary Source, Published Information and Report & Inform categories. The report concludes: "Traction has a strong reputation for Enterprise Blogs and Wiki, and now with RSS Feeds and QL2 Integration, places its software as a leading-edge CI Software vendor that understands the intelligence needs from non-traditional sources." and continues "Traction meets the budget and technical needs of most CI operations..." » Read More
Jonathan Spira's inspiring new book provides a fresh view of the challenges facing today's knowledge worker and practical strategies to outfit them with tools they need. One case study covers the story of a competitive intelligence group in a Fortune 500 company. They deployed Traction TeamPage enterprise blog software to effectively put "CI in context for decision making" and "provide easy access to information across the busess." The system supports collaboration between 25 people involved in the intelligence process and over 100 decision makers. (Page 141-144)
From Suw Charman, writer of the Strange Attractor blog on Corante: I'm pleased to announce the arrival of the first Dark Blogs Case Study (pdf), examining the use of Traction's TeamPage enterprise weblog software for a competitive intelligence project within a large European pharmaceutical group. The case study examines the reasons why blogs where chosen, project planning, implementation, integration with other business systems, editorial process, launch and promotion, training and adoption.
I'd been thinking over the last six months or so that it is pretty easy for those of us on the outside to make assumptions about how blogs can be used behind the firewall, what implementation and adoption problems exist and how they can be solved. As far as I could see, the only real way to get this information was to do detailed case studies, and this is the first in a series that I am writing. » Read Suw's Blog Post About the Study (the PDF link in her story is broken) » Read the Dark Blogs Case Study (pdf)
(Full Report Requires Burton Group Login for Access) By Peter O'Kelly - "Blogs and wikis represent important opportunities for communication channels and collaborative workspaces... Because they are simpler to create and use than traditional enterprise-oriented alternatives, blogs and wikis are very effective for relatively basic communication/collaboration scenarios, and they’re also very well suited to address inter-enterprise needs..."
"Although Traction's products are marketed as “enterprise weblog” offerings, they are in fact powerful hypertext systems that exploit blog- and wiki-related advances to maximize simplicity but also do so on a scale that addresses elaborate hypertext application scenarios that would overwhelm wiki alternatives."
October 2006 | Burton Group Report - Hypertext and Compound/Interactive Document Models
Enterprise 2.0 - Letting hypertext out of its box
Beyond blogs and wikis
The Evolution of Personal Knowledge Management
Traction Roots - Doug Engelbart
The outward-facing uses of blogs typically need few features whereas using blogs or wikis internally (whether on an intranet or extranet) often requires a different feature set...
Currently much information flows via email. This leads to a number of problems, including the difficulty of “occupational spam” where people are copied on email messages they don’t need to read, and the missing email where people are left off the list that do need to read it. New people don’t have the necessary background, and people who’ve been around for a while have hundreds of unnecessary emails languishing unread in folders...
We’re just at the beginning of the blog and wiki era in corporate use and it won’t take long before these tools are used as often for collaboration as email is today.
» Read More
(report is available for $250) Traction Software has harnessed this basic concept and added a considerable amount of functionality to provide a unique enterprise-level solution for gathering and sharing information throughout an organization... Traction’s TeamPage is a novel approach that represents a drive to design software around how people work, as opposed to forcing people to conform to the requirements of the software. A major benefit to implementingTeamPage is that it is applicable to not just the competitive intelligence function, but the entire organization as well. While several CI technology solutions are fundamentally designed for the CI team and may be harnessed for other uses,TeamPage is the other way around. It’s a solution designed to support any project requiring collaborative effort, and it just so happens that competitive intelligence is one of them. » Read More
(Document Requires Burton Group Login for Access) - Peter O'Kelly lays out a vision of well integrated workspaces for collaboration and channels for communication. O'Kelly comments: Traction is as simple as a wiki (defined and described in “The Details”) in terms of getting started with a new workspace, but the depth of its metamodel makes Traction more robust for a wider range of collaboration needs as workspaces evolve. » Read More
(Document Requires Butler Group Permission for Access) The Technology Audit finds Traction TeamPage as an innovative solution for collaborative working and recommends Organisations and groups that are involved in market intelligence, program and product development, projects, business, and government communication will benefit from Traction TeamPage. » Read More
In 1996 Providence, Rhode Island-based Traction Software evolved Engelbart’s hypertext journaling concept to develop the first Enterprise Weblog software... As an interactive webbased journaling system, weblogs reduce the pain of managing source information and automate much of the dissemination activity currently plaguing CI teams which prevents them from focusing on the core analysis task. Given more time to conduct situational and impact analysis, weblogs also furnish an excellent vehicle to inject analysis into source documents. by Arik Johnson » Read More
Focused on an in-depth and open examination of the top six CI software portals vendors (Including Traction TeamPage) and providing an updated functional comparison, plus screen shots of user interface and other benchmarking data, the Review is available free-of-charge to qualifying intelligence practitioners and other Aurora customers and partners. » Read More
Bottom Line: Innovative decision makers and early adopters will avoid the mistakes of the past (underestimating the impact of the Web) by allocating discretionary funding in 2004 for blog pilots as part of an iterative effort to construct a broader business case for social computing. By Mike Gotta, META Group. » Read More
Clay Shirky's writes about Traction in the May 2003 issue of Esther Dyson's Release 1.0 titled Social Software: A New Generation of Tools. Abstract: "Taking their cue from people’s actual behaviors rather than some idealized projection, a number of startups are designing tools that help people get what they want from group interaction." » Read More