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IBM will help Robert Bosch provide its employees with social-media tools

Robert Bosch has decided to use IBM Connections software to deepen the integration of social media in its office procedures.

The German automotive supplier decided on IBM because the US based IT services and computer company offered a highly standardized package of software that is easy to use and can be expanded down the road.

"With IBM Connections, IBM doesn't just offer a powerful platform," said Josef Maichle, vice president corporate information systems at Bosch. "Based on its experience in the area of social business, the company has also positioned itself as a trustworthy partner for the changeover."

Bosch in the past year evaluated how to implement social media software across its operations. It wanted to provide employees with the ability to form social communities and other internal cooperation tools.

Selection criteria for Bosch were functional areas of coverage, intuitive operation and the possibility to introduce the new software without having to make major changes to existing systems.

Ivo Koerner, vice president software at IBM Germany, said companies see the efficiency benefits from social media, but worry about the required shifts in working practices.

Said Koerner: "The change into a social business is a big cultural challenge for many companies."

IBM Connections software provides employees access to everyone in a pre-defined professional network. The software offers moderation, blogs, a media gallery and other social-media tools that help provide faster access to information.