Socialwork Create a company social network with Socialcast

Posted by maggie.hunsucker June 22, 2009

Picture 1Collaboration can be difficult when your workforce is scattered across offices.  Sure, there’s email and online chat, but these communication tools often make public conversations private knowledge.

Stay connected to projects and people, regardless of your location or level of involvement, with Socialcast.  Socialcast is an enterprise productivity tool.  It’s similar to Yammer, an idea we discussed in Everything looks like a nail, but whereas Yammer has a strictly Twitter flavor, Socialcast is a full-on social networking platform.

Employees have profile pages and the ability to follow each other.   Through the “what’s on your mind” status update, they can publish work activity, ideas, questions, general musings, etc, and other employees can view, comment, or attach files to those updates.  There’s also a groups functionality that can be used to manage projects, departments, or location-specific conversations.

The best part?  Everything is public and searchable.  No guessing who is working on what or what stage of development a project is at.   You can follow all conversation threads on the homepage or opt-in to receive email notifications.  The latter keeping you in the know, even when you’re not actively participating in the community.

The even better best part?  Socialcast is free.  The basic version comes with unlimited users, data ownership, administration rights, and more.  There is an enterprise version for companies that want to take the platform behind their own firewall, but we’re pretty impressed with the level of features you get with the basic version.

Socialcast is a great tool for fostering employee communication (think Yahoo Answers for your company) and creating a real sense of community. You can use it to share information that is often left out of the employee handbooks (e.g. best lunch spots, best times to avoid the line at the local cafe, wi-fi dead zones, etc.) and even to coordinate employee initiatives (e.g. carpooling, happy hours, recycling challenges, baby sitting programs, softball teams, etc.).

Socialcast has some pretty sweet integrations too. You can download a Socialcast desktop app, bookmarklet, and even a Google Gadget. You can also import your Facebook feed URL, which will automatically update your Socialcast status.

Socialcast is all about company visibility. Both the enterprise and basic version come with an anlaytics tool for tracking usage rates and trends.

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