Organization mining using online social networks

Michael Fire, Rami Puzis

Networks and Spatial Economics 16, 545-578, 2016

Complementing the formal organizational structure of a business are the informal connections among employees. These relationships help identify knowledge hubs, working groups, and shortcuts through the organizational structure. They carry valuable information on how a company functions de facto. In the past, eliciting the informal social networks within an organization was challenging; today they are reflected by friendship relationships in online social networks. In this paper we analyze several commercial organizations by mining data which their employees have exposed on Facebook, LinkedIn, and other publicly available sources. Using a web crawler designed for this purpose, we extract a network of informal social relationships among employees of targeted organizations. Our results show that it is possible to identify leadership roles within the organization solely by using centrality analysis and …