British company Trampoline Systems has launched "the world's first organisational intelligence and diagnostic" tool that it claims will help IT executives better identify the key individuals within their organisations.

Trampoline says that Sonar Flightdeck collates information from across an organisation by using network analysis techniques "to expose the social networks and information flows contained within everyday electronic communications."

Sonar Flightdeck takes information from sources such as IMs, emails, databases and data repositories, and provides IT managers with visual representations of information flows and social networks within their organisation. This, the company says, allows executives to identify "key opinion formers, poorly-integrated business units, emerging communities of interest, single points of failure and third-party relationships."

"Sonar Flightdeck extends the scope of enterprise social computing by bringing the specialised techniques of organisational network analysis to business users," said Charles Armstrong, CEO of Trampoline Systems. "It derives vital intelligence from the millions of fragments of electronic information flowing around an organisation and presents it in interactive visualisations. Sonar Flightdeck reveals the strategic insight that has long been locked inside everyday communications."

Speaking to Techworld, Armstrong dismissed claims that the ability to map human influences within an organisation is somewhat far-fetched.

"A lot of these techniques are already well established in consulting world,” he said. “It is known as organisational network analysis. It is not rocket science we are doing."

"Large corporations already use organisational network analysis," he said. "Traditionally, it consists of surveys of employees, and then statistical tools take that information, and use it to establish for example who are the 'information brokers' (i.e. key people) in the organisation, and which teams are not well integrated."

"These are well established techniques," he insisted. "We have taken those techniques and put the technology into an algorithmic form. We can do that the same thing as traditional organisational network analysis, but in real-time, with significant breakdown of data, so you can monitor what people are actually doing, rather than in a questionnaire."

"This is especially valuable in a merger and acquisition situation, when executives want to identify the key people," said Armstrong. "Management can then make sure that these key people (or information brokers) are happy and will stay. Sonar Flightdeck provides statistical hard data about who is valuable."

Armstrong then demonstrated how Sonar Flightdeck visually identifies the key people in a particular organisation, and how these people interact and relate to other individuals, departments, and indeed overseas branches of the same organisation.

Trampoline believes that "businesses are increasingly aware that informal, peer to peer networks are the real powerhouse of their organisations."

"We really are the first people to do this," said Armstrong. "The rise of awareness of value of executives of social networks has risen astronomically in past two years," he added. "The rise of Facebook has been a big contributor to that. There is a growing awareness that a business is a complex set of overlapping networks, and that in order to be successful, businesses have to harness them."

Trampoline is based in London and Sonar Flightdeck is the newest addition to its Sonar suite of products. Clients include the Raytheon Company and the UK Foreign Office.

Pricing information was not revealed, but interested parties are advised to contact Trampoline direct.