Infor launches Ming.le - focusing on a social user experience for enterprise systems

2013-04-23

A late entrant to the enterprise social software market, last year enterprise software company Infor launched Infor10 SocialSpaces.

This week they announced an upgrade to this concept, called Ming.le:

Ming.le homepage

Listening to the media messages and watching the recording of their user conference keynote, this update is all about creating a user experience led design. A key feature of this design is to tightly integrate Infor's Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP), Supply Chain Management (SCM), Human Capital Management (HCM), and Enterprise Asset Management (EAM) solutions into a dashboard and activity stream - in other words, what Alan Lepofsky calls "purposeful collaboration".

Without getting hands on access to Ming.le and seeing some solid case studies, its hard to comment on how well this user experience works in practice. Infor competitor, SAP, has also been heading down this same track with SAP Jam (with a similar philosophy of focusing on the user experience). And we may also eventually find that Microsoft has plans to integrate Yammer's capabilities further with its Dynamics suite. So a focus on user experience isn't entirely unique to Ming.le.

Personally, at this point, I still think there is room for both general social collaboration platforms and those like Ming.le and Jam that integrate tightly into transactional systems (aka systems of record). But bearing in mind that corporate communications and marketing departments (and to a lesser extent HR) have often been driving the use of enterprise social platforms as employee engagement tools, it will be interesting to watch how well vendors like Infor can address the transformation needed to make purposeful collaboration work.

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