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Exploitation Plan

The exploitation report presents the commercial prospects for the use of social networking systems (SNS) in a business environment to provide benefits in company efficiency and effectiveness via collective knowledge and information sharing across a multi-level supply chain. It describes this as a result of the KNOWNET research project carried out involving RSA (formerly known as Royal Sun Alliance) as the commercial partner, Brunel University (BRU) as the lead academic partner and Universitat Politecnica de Valencia (UPDV)as supporting academic partner. The KNOWNET project was funded by the FP7 Marie Curie IAPP Scheme.
The project had some main business objectives:
- Develop a working SNS to research the prospects for such a system
- To implement an SNS at RSA to establish the receptivity and benefits for the use of such a system in a commercial environment, as a pilot trial
- To run a pilot trial of the same system in the partnering country (Spain) to establish cultural and other differences, if any.
- To produce a forward looking plan for exploitation of such systems
Clearly, the research nature of the project meant that the actual potential of a system was unknown at the project outset and so this report identifies the status of the findings at the time of project close, with the actions and decisions necessary to deliver benefit in the business domain.
The report describes the business facing outcomes of the work leading to the business argument for undertaking a major business wide project. The following aspects are considered:
- The conceptual arguments for using social network systems in a business environment
- The specific environment at RSA catalysing the project
- The impact of the pilot trials of a SN system at RSA
- Important events during the pilot trials with material effect on the outcomes
- Business conclusions following pilot trials
- Wider market overview
- Constraints and results affecting the success of SN systems in business
- Decisions and actions necessary at RSA to ‘roll out’ a universal RSA system
- The business case at RSA, with implications for other interested businesses
- Report Conclusions

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