My name is Rachel Heskin. I am with Life Technologies, and Life Technologies is a global bio-technology tools company with about 9,000 employees around the world. We chose Jive because we were looking for a collaboration platform. We thought we were going to have an intranet, and we did a big user survey, talked to all of our employees around the globe and what came back is that they wanted a place to talk to each other and connect with each other, collaborate. Intellectual properties are important in our organization. Connecting people who are very smart across borders and across time zones, and across countries, was very important to us. We chose Jive because it offered the opportunity, in an easy way, to make discussions and to create that collaboration in a very easy way.
Social business, I think for Life Technologies, but for me personally, is about those connections. It’s about taking your users, your employee group, an internal community, and taking that employer group and saying “we can be social. We can take advantage of the new media and the new technologies, and have virtual collaboration. We don’t have to be in the same room. We don’t have to be on the same time zone. You can offer a suggestion and I can offer a solution, and we could be 12 hours apart. And we could continue that conversation over the days without losing track of where we are.” It’s not email and not everybody’s being CC’d, just the people who want to engage in the conversation are there. Even better, if it’s an open community you can actually have people who you didn’t even know join the conversation.
The most popular things that are going on are conversations about the business and about strategy, which we’ve never had conversations about before in our organization. Generally it was that one-way communication. The President of the company sends an email, and nobody ever replies. But in this case it’s a blog, and people feel comfortable making a comment and the CEO can respond. And other people can respond and be part of the conversation, and you don’t have that reply all feature. So that’s been really nice. It’s given our executives a platform to talk strategy two-way and have a two-way dialog about that, and I think that’s really important.