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Forrester Groundswell Awards

Social Business Hub: Share Chain

By CDS Global

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As part of CDS Global's social business program, known as the Social Business Hub, CDS Global's social business center of excellence created the Share Chain initiative.

You've all heard of Aunt Sue's prayer chain, right? Well, there's definitely strength in numbers -- so CDS Global's Social Business Hub borrowed her clever idea. CDS Global is a legacy B2B dealing with digital disruption in its industry. Employees are coming together to ensure the brand maintains relevance and share of voice among its new, savvy connected audiences.

The Share Chain is an initiative that brings employees together, across all departments, to request collaborative team support for the sharing of particularly important information through public social channels. This is a grassroots effort to maximize social reach and relevance by calling on coworkers to help spread the word to our individual social graphs and networks.

The Share Chain uses CDS Global's employee portal's forum technology, built on Liferay. Subscribing employees submit new requests by creating a new thread. The new request is sent to all employee's email inboxes in real-time.

Problem: CDS Global is facing a major dilemma. The emergence of an always on, always connected digital-social-mobile culture has swiftly disrupted, not just CDS Global's sales funnel, but its offerings and competitive landscape as well. New, digital savvy competitors are emerging, unexpected. The majority of CDS Global's prospects now take to Google search and the social web throughout the path to conversion, preferring to educate themselves, first and foremost, about the solutions we provide.

Goal: CDS Global must empower its individual employees to collaboratively leverage, not just internal, enterprise social networks, but personal, public social technologies and tactics, to benefit their individual work performance and and CDS Global's brand reach, awareness and transparency as a whole.

1. Help employees work together using collaboration and social technology.
2. Increase the reach and exposure of thought leadership content among prospects and customers
3. Generate valuable new business relationships (including new prospects), and strengthen existing business relationships
4. Foster an "in the know" work culture that leverages social networks to keep its finger on the pulse of emerging business developments and trends

CDS Global has launched a multi-faceted program that helps employees work together using collaboration and social technology. The program, which includes the Share Chain, as well as diverse Lunch & Learn classes, a 12-week Twitter Challenge program, an employee Twitter directory and social business resources and playbooks, is receiving increased demand across employees, including executive-level support.

The Share Chain is being actively used by more than 100 employees. Managers across sites have requested additional training and implementation for their staff, and the CEO has personally joined the Share Chain and Social Business Hub network to increase brand engagement and awareness. The Share Chain launched in beta in July, along with the other Social Business Hub initiatives. Already, more than 40 employees have responded to the Share Chain requests by tweeting and posting to their personal LinkedIn groups to individually contribute to requests.

In order to expand and sustain the program, the Social Business Hub has planned a company-wide email campaign, employee incentives program, and a crowdsourcing ideation submission process, to be launched in September 2013.

July to present

Social Business Hub: Share Chain