Companies know that knowledge Management is one of the key elements when improving the internal processes of employees, which have an effect on the higher quality of work that is developed. Telefónica I+D isn’t indifferent to this need and has multiple communication channels so that the knowledge flows between employees in an agile and natural way. In that way, microblogging was thought of as a possible solution to offer those capacities.
Microblog, according to Wikipedia’s definition (in Spanish), is a service which allow users to send and publish short messages (approximately 140 characters), normally only text. The options for sending messages vary, from web sites, through SMS, instant messaging or ad hoc applications. These updates are shown on the user’s profile page and are also sent immediately to other users who have chosen the option of receiving them. The original user can limit the sending of messages only to members of his/her group of friends or allow access to all users, which is the default option.
Since the apparition of Twitter, probably the most extended microblogging service, we thought about the possibility of creating an internal space that would allow that communication possibilities for Telefónica I+D employees. Some internal trials of concept were carried out to offer this service. But on occasions the communication initiatives between employees develop with total independence of the company’s action, coming from the people.
In this way, which was spontaneous and came form some employees, the generalised used of Yammer become popular. Yammer is a microblog service oriented to companies and it has become an extra official system of internal communication. In January 2010 this communication space has more than 700 registered employees and has approximately 8000 messages, especially sharing of technological news, debates, etc.
Telefónica I+D, far from wanting to impose communication systems when there are already extra official ones working, has assumed that conversation between employees must find its space in the channel that offers more comfort for everyone. Currently, we are analysing the way of making the most out the information that is provided in this external space in order not to loose knowledge for the internal system, so that both fields of knowledge can coexist: the internal of the company and the external, through Yammer.