If your existing e-mail system makes it nearly\n impossible to find what you need or effectively manage many\n documents, you might be ready for enterprise blogging on your\n corporate intranet, according to analysts and vendors at the\n Enterprise 2.0 conference in Boston. Here are seven signs that\n you might be ready:\n CONSUMER APPS @WORK\n \n Read How CIOs Can Learn to Love IM Messages and Other Tools of User Empowerment\n 1. Your enterprise e-mail applications are not easy\n to search. This prevents people from getting key\n information that might be buried in a colleague\u2019s inbox.\n Even recent improvements and offerings in enterprise search\n might not allow you to get critical pieces of information you\n need from an e-mail that someone failed to include you as a\n recipient in. \u201cKM [Knowledge Management] fails often\n because the benefit was for the company, not the\n individual,\u201d says Suw Charman, a blog consultant.\n \u201cWouldn\u2019t it just be easy to keep information about\n one subject in one place\u2014a blog?\u201d2. Your e-mail is lost in the eye of the \u201ccc\n storm.\u201d With e-mail, information sharing is\n haphazard, disorganized. The information that gets passed along\n to anyone largely relies on the prerogative of the sender. Did\n he put you in the \u201cto\u201d or \u201ccc\u201d (carbon\n copy) field or the politically charged \u201cbc\u201d (for\n blind copy)? Sometimes, people merely forget to include key\n players, or worse, sometimes the omission is intentional (see\n more about e-mail cattiness below, under the section on\n openness and accountability). \u201cIf there is information in\n a cc storm and you\u2019re not on it, then you don\u2019t\n have any idea about what\u2019s going on,\u201d says Chris\n Alden, executive vice president with Six Apart, an enterprise\n blogging vendor. With blogs, information about specific topics\n lives on the intranet, and critical information can be\n broadcasted to all who want to see it and who have permission\n to see it.3. Ex-employees can take it with\n them. When someone leaves, odds are the e-mail account\n becomes dissolved and all the valuable information that lived\n in that person\u2019s account disappears into a data\n wasteland. \u201cIt\u2019s forever lost,\u201d says Anil\n Dash, chief evangelist for Six Apart. \u201cIf it\u2019s in a\n blog, it doesn\u2019t disappear when that person\n leaves.\u201d4. Too much wasted time checking in with\n colleagues. If you know the movie Office\n Space, think of Lumbergh pestering his direct\n report\u2014about nothing much of import, with a recurring,\n \u201cHello, Peter, what\u2019s happening?\u201d It\u2019s\n a truism that people waste a ton of time \u201cchecking\n in\u201d with one another either in person, via e-mail or\n phone. A blog provides a method of logging that information\n without the cumbersome process of constantly sending\n \u201cwhat have you been working on lately\u201d types of\n e-mails. If your boss or direct report reads your blog, he\n already knows.5. With blogs, the humble and the egotist both\n win. Though you can set access controls, most blogs\n can be an internal platform to communicate about ongoing\n projects and what your big business wins and losses are. Hence,\n the egotist can show all the great work she\u2019s done and\n have it displayed publicly (remembering that people can choose\n to read about it, whereas with e-mail that jerk invades your\n e-mail whether you like it or not). \u201cThose people like\n others to discover what they know,\u201d Dash says. It\u2019s\n another medium for them to fuel their vanity (and colleagues\n can access valuable information they possess).Meanwhile, Dash adds, the humble worker who just wants to\n make sure people have the proper information to help others do\n their jobs effectively also wins by displaying her work\n publicly, on an as-needed basis.6. Organizational openness and\n accountability. There is a fair amount of catty\n behavior that occurs over e-mail, and petty politics play a\n part sometimes about who gets an e-mail. Who is on the\n \u201cto\u201d field? Who is on the \u201ccc\u201d field?\n Did theyreally spinelessly include their boss in a\n \u201cbc\u201d field to humiliate a colleague? With blogs, it\n encourages open information, communication and debate without\n alienating certain people or encouraging bickering between\n colleagues before an e-mail thread is escalated to the\n boss.7. People might already be using them. Odds\n are, shadow IT users have already brought things like a\n blogspot account into the enterprise and are blogging with or\n without your knowledge. As such, being able to set a company\n policy and giving them an outlet in which their blogging skills\n can help the whole enterprise makes sense. \u201cThe tools\n they use are the ones they use at home that work so well you\n can\u2019t stop them from bringing them into work,\u201d Dash\n says.