Enterprise social networking (ESN) platforms, like Yammer and Jive, are gaining popularity but face significant adoption challenges. A lack of understanding of the work culture and failure to integrate into existing workflows are the main reasons for these challenges. Ethnography, the study of social interactions and behaviours, can potentially resolve these issues.

Ethnography can help understand the work culture and identify the needs and pain points of employees. It can reveal how employees interact, communicate, and use technology, providing crucial insights for designing user-friendly ESN platforms.

However, ethnography isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution. It requires an iterative, ongoing process of observation, analysis, and design. Ethnographers need to continually engage with users, observe their behaviours, and adapt the platform based on these observations.

Moreover, ethnography can also help in the post-implementation phase. By observing how users adopt and adapt to the ESN platform, ethnographers can identify areas for improvement and ensure the platform evolves with the changing needs of the users.

In essence, ethnography can play a crucial role in the successful implementation and adoption of ESN platforms. It can help design platforms that are in sync with the work culture and workflows, thereby increasing user adoption and engagement.

Go to source article: http://ethnographymatters.net/2012/09/20/can-ethnography-save-enterprise-social-networking/