Enterprise 2.0

Forrester Research has issued a new report on the increasing importance of Web 2.0 technology within the enterprise. In a nutshell, the report, entitled “Top Enterprise Web 2.0 Predictions for 2008,” predicts that the deployment of tools like blogs, wikis, and social networking within the enterprise was a growing force in the software market in 2007, and though still immature, will continue to gain importance in ’08.

While certainly not earth shattering news, there were some interesting tidbits. The report predicts that the use of RSS in enterprise firms and social networking will increase, the former from about 9 percent to nearly 20 percent by year’s end and the use of internal social networking solutions increasing with the latter.

It’s a trend that’s certainly playing out in the vendor market. The report suggests companies like Google and Salesforce.com will make smaller Web 2.0 acquisitions, as will Microsoft. And in addition to CRM vendors like ourselves embedding Web 2.0 functionality into new offerings, the next generation of Web-service based platforms and architectures provide a common foundation for the employment of Web 2.0 technologies, such as the latest generations of multi-instance SaaS offerings.

A specific example is Sun Microsystems’ $1 billion acquisition of MySQL, which could prove to be Sun’s catalyst into the Web 2.0 world. Besides plugging a hole in Sun’s product line, the acquisition of MySQL, which has an estimated $200 million in annual revenues, accounts for a small fraction of the $15 billion worldwide database market. But it’s the database most frequently used for new Web applications and sites, particularly those for social networking, such as Facebook and MySpace.