Trampoline says social networking can bounce productivity

Trampoline Systems has launched what it claims is the world's first organisational intelligence and diagnostics tool.

Trampoline Systems has launched what it claims is the world's first organisational intelligence and diagnostics tool.

Charles Armstrong, CEO of the company, which describes itself as an enterprise social computing pioneer, told Computer Weekly he spent a year in the Isles of Scilly studying village life, to work out why real social networks are so efficient at channeling resources. His rationale was to capture that quality and instil it into automated systems for corporations.

"I'm not a traditional IT person," said Armstrong. "My background is in ethnography. I wanted to know why villages are so good at getting the right information to the right people, but corporations are so ineffcient. So I spent a year on St Agnes looking at the rules of social networks."

Following the research, Sonar Dashboard was launched. This tool uses social network tools - akin to Facebook and MySpace - to allow end users to communicate with other interested parties in a corporate environment.

The company has now launched Sonar Flightdeck, a management tool that visualises high-value strategic information from everyday communications. According to Trampoline, the system automatically displays the crucial social factors at play within organisations, including key opinion formers, poorly integrated business units, emerging communities of interest, single points of failure and third-party relationships.

"This intelligence was largely anecdotal before," explained Armstrong. "Now the company has more formal methods of identifying the good and the bad performers, collaboration and innovation and the high risk, low-data integrations."

Armstrong identified a new group of key influential workers, who know everybody and everything going on in a company. "I call them the information brokers," he said.

"Industry spent billions in the 90s on business intelligence," said Armstrong. "These were fantastic systems, but they only looked at information and documents. What we're analysing here is something far more important. Human resources."

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