While the use of Enterprise Social Software (ESS) increases, reports from science and practice show that evaluating its impact remains a major challenge. Various interests and points of view make each ESS evaluation an individual matter and lead to diverse requirements. In this paper, we propose a design theory that highlights the various design options and ensures completeness and consistency. Based on a comprehensive literature analysis, as well as an interview study with 31 ESS experts from 29 companies, we suggest a conceptual framework intended as decision support for the ESS evaluation design for different stakeholders. Beyond providing an orientation the framework also reveals six evaluation classes that represent typical application instantiations and can be understood as principles of implementation. A first validation in five organizations confirms that the framework can lead to a more efficient evaluation design and to increased effectiveness during the evaluation phase.
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