We all know Facebook to be primarily an app we use to keep in touch with friends online. Okay, these days Facebook groups, pages, events and so many others have turned the social forum into a community where anything goes. Still, Facebook in the final analysis is not a place to do serious work. You go there when you are not working.
However, Facebook have a different idea though. They want to steal the time we dedicate to work and allocate that time to Facebook. The way to do that is by redesigning Facebook and making it look suitable for people working in big organizations.
After that, give the new product a name that would leave no one in doubt about what your are doing online. Call it Workplace. And that is what Facebook actually did. They launched a new product or service yesterday and called it Workplace.
In effect, Workplace is not the place to go if you want to see the cute doggy your friend posted on Facebook; or an update on the school reunion your ex-classmates are planning next month.
In Workplace, you go to see what the boss, or the team leader or just any random work colleague is doing that could help you be a better worker.
I guess by now you have a pretty good idea about how this works. For instance, have you noticed that people hardly email friends and colleagues like before? These days we have dozens of instant messaging apps to do that for us.
Even some offices have WhatsApp groups to communicate and pass information between colleagues.
Workplace is sort of bringing all that on to one nice platform.
The idea of Workplace actually started about two years ago. A team led by Julien Codorniou worked on the product and a year later, a beta version was released mostly to be used by Facebook employees.
After the release of the beta version in January 2015, Facebook gave the go ahead to Julien and his team to try and convince companies to sign up to the app.
Until the official launch of the service yesterday, they had succeeded in convincing over 1000 companies to sign up to Workplace. Which is very impressive considering that they were selling a novelty.
Some of the companies that signed up included the RBS, one of the biggest banks in the world based in the UK. So if it is good for RBS, what are you waiting for?
Workplace is essentially an enterprise service. So using the service might come at a cost.
Here is how Facebook broke the news announcing the launch of Workplace:
At Facebook, we’ve had an internal version of our app to help run our company for many years. We’ve seen that just as Facebook keeps you connected to friends and family, it can do the same with coworkers. We started testing a version of Facebook for the workplace with a few other organizations over a year ago.
Now, more than 1,000 organizations around the world use Workplace (formerly known as Facebook at Work). People have created nearly 100,000 groups and the top five countries using Workplace are India, the US, Norway, UK and France. We’re excited by the progress we’ve made and the level of adoption and engagement we’re seeing.
So today we’re announcing that Workplace will now be available to any company or organization that wants to use it.
We’ve brought the best of Facebook to the workplace — whether it’s basic infrastructure such as News Feed, or the ability to create and share in Groups or via chat, or useful features such as Live, Reactions, Search and Trending posts. This means you can chat with a colleague across the world in real time, host a virtual brainstorm in a Group, or follow along with your CEO’s presentation on Facebook Live.”
image credit: newsroom.fb.com; mashable.com