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The approach uses Social Network Analysis (SNA) to make it easier for executives to analyze and manage informal communications networks.Its practical applicability is demonstrated by a case study.), knowledge workers already account for 70 % of the labor force in the USA and for more than 60 % of its added value.The article presents a prototype of an IT-supported instrument (“Social Badges”) that supports automatic collection of informal, personal interaction between (knowledge) workers within an enterprise.
At the same time, the authors will be presenting an instrument (“Social Badges”) that collects personal communications automatically and more precisely than legacy approaches allow.
The practical applicability of the approach is evaluated through a case study.
To do so, they have developed a data collection and evaluation method that allows more or less exhaustive and automatic collection of informal communications processes.
Besides measuring entirely virtual communications paths, the approach also covers personal communications.
The aim is to strengthen organizational competencies at all levels of the enterprise by means of an effective and efficient approach to knowledge and to create an ecosystem that promotes spontaneous and efficient processes of exchange (; Cross et al. Efforts to solve this problem face the challenge that informal communication networks are difficult to measure and monitor.
This applies in particular if networks are large and the actors geographically dispersed ().To this end, 22 bank employees wore Social Badges during working hours for the duration of one month.Additionally, the e-mail archives of seven Kreissparkasse branches (approx.The content of this article is organized as follows: the next section explains the role played by the analysis of social networks in achieving organizational goals, and the motivation for this article based on deficits in the state of the art of current research.The subsequent section introduces Social Badges as a novel instrument for the analysis of informal communication networks, capable of mitigating these deficits.To this end a novel, portable sensor platform – known as the Social Badge – was developed at the MIT Media Lab: the Social Badge is about the size of a cellular phone and is equipped with various sensors.It supports continuous measurement of the geographic position (Bluetooth), direction of movement and speed (tri-axial acceleration sensor), interaction (infrared sensor) and mood (microphone and speech analysis) of the person wearing it.The structure and dynamics of informal communication networks are of central importance for the functionality of enterprise workflows and for performance and innovation of knowledge-centric organizations.While most executives are aware of this fact, there is a general lack of (semi-) automated, IT-supported methods and instruments to make informal communication networks measurable.16 million e-mails) were evaluated over a period of seven months.Besides this network data, data on the productivity of staff members and groups and on staff members’ personalities was collected.