Facebook is working on extending its network beyond the social realm and into the professional world. Facebook aims to gain a foothold in your office space too now. The social networking giant is working on its new offering called “Facebook at work” This new product is aimed at enterprises and will help Facebook compete with LinkedIn on the professional networking front. Facebook at work will allow colleagues to chat, connect with professionals and allow us to collaborate over documents.
This new product that Facebook is developing targets not only LinkedIn, but it also sets its sights on Google Drive with its feature of collaborative documents. Facebook at work will be an amalgamation of the various enterprise softwares available today. It will allow for instant messaging, file sharing, newsfeed collaborative documents all in the familiar Facebook form factor.
While details about “Facebook at work” are scarce, there is already a solidifying view on the drivers and the restraints that the US-based Social media giant will face. One of the major concerns is obviously security and privacy. With a lot of sensitive professional data expected to be exchanged on this platform, the encryption will have to be tremendously advanced. In an attempt to allay these fears, Facebook has now introduced a new encryption software in their messaging service which will prevent anyone but the sender and the recipient to view the message.
If Facebook at work delivers everything it promises, it may just be a boon for small and medium enterprises for whom purchasing an enterprise system may not be viable. Instead of having to rely on fragmented solutions like Slack and Trello, Facebook at work promises to deliver superior functionality on a common platform.
In a nutshell, the companies enterprise target offering will have similar functionality of its current site, with popular features such as newsfeed, groups and messaging capabilities. However, it will also include collaborative tools so as to allow collaboration on documents etc. Facebook has assured that Facebook at work will be entirely separate from personal accounts, with no information from a users social profile appearing on her/his professional page and vice-versa
Facebook at work is currently a pilot scale project, but it is being used by Facebook employees internally as an enterprise solution. Creating this new, separate network for business will bring Facebook in direct competition not only with LinkedIn but also with industry giants such as IBM, Microsoft and a whole host of other companies offering enterprise solutions of their own.
The Biggest Challenge faced by collaborative tools like Trello, Slack and Yammer is usually the learning curve involved in efficiently using these platforms, this leads to a relatively low rate of adoption. Facebook has the unique proposition of familiarity. Almost everyone in the world is well versed with Facebook, hence the learning curve with Facebook at work will be much lower than with your typical productivity tools.
“I’m glad Facebook’s thought of something for when I’m done screwing around and want to get serious about wasting time.”
John Pereira – Book Galley Mailer
“It’s pretty bold of Facebook to completely skip the step where it buys LinkedIn.”
Michelle Crespo – Flight Scheduler