Most companies already have the building blocks of a community. With email systems, organizational charts, and company directories, they have social graphs. Community platforms extend these systems rather than being standalone platforms. They incorporate several community models under a single umbrella.
With a known social graph, chat systems can tie into existing messaging servers. For example, Parlano’s MindAlign (now part of the Microsoft Live Communication Server) works with an employee’s existing contacts, as shown in Figure 15-1.
Figure 15-1. MindAlign by Parlano (now part of Microsoft’s Office Communication Server)
Hosted solutions, such as Campfire (shown in Figure 15-2) are geared toward smaller businesses that are looking for ways to reach out to one another in real time. These types of solutions are much easier to install and manage than enterprise platforms.
Figure 15-2. Hosted internal chat platforms like Campfire are aimed at smaller, more distributed organizations
Large enterprises will run chat internally in part because of reporting and compliance legislation. Some industries require that all interactions be archived and available for discovery in the event of legal disputes. Also, by using an internal chat system, a company can block ...