The story of Facebook is the stuff of tech legend as the company has indeed come a long way. From a social networking service for university students to conquering the social media world, now it also wants to be useful in the enterprise. Facebook at Work is the social networking giant’s upcoming slide into the enterprise space. This new product is a communications tool, much like Slack or Skype for Business. It aims to make it easier for enterprise personnel to communicate with one another. Or in another way of thinking, its Facebook Messenger that has been thoroughly beefed up so it can accommodate the needs of working people in teams and on projects.
So how do you sign up? Not so fast – it’s an exclusive deal so far. Facebook sent out invites for an October 11 event in London where Facebook at Work will be formally launched. Called Workplace by Facebook, it is notably the first time Facebook is launching a major project outside the US, simply because the product was conceived and built in Facebook’s London office. In fact, Workplace by Facebook was closed beta tested by some of the biggest companies in Europe such as Telenor and the Royal Bank of Scotland.
Another collaboration tool–from Facebook?
You’re probably thinking that there might be too many collaboration tools out today. Perhaps you think that the world doesn’t need collaboration tool and another tool is one that no one will probably use. Workplace clearly has different ideas. You might be forgetting almost everyone on the planet who has the Internet also has a Facebook account which means it will be easier to convince them to use it. Think about it: it has the air for familiarity for users built in and it’s just like using Facebook, except that you need to create a separate Workplace account, so your personal and work life don’t have to merge (we know that’s what you were thinking!)
What is it like? Well, Workplace features Groups, News Feed, Work Chat, Events, and Search, and will be available on both iOS and Android. If you’ve been using Facebook and Facebook Messenger, then you won’t have a problem using Workplace, and that’s by design. Since it’s a collaboration tool for the enterprise, security is paramount, thus Facebook states it uses powerful systems to keep users’ information safe and secure.
“While we build and maintain our own infrastructure and tools to safeguard your data, we also follow third-party industry standards such as those set by the Cloud Security Alliance,” Facebook said in its page.
Time will tell whether this tool takes off and is taken seriously as a collaboration tool for groups. In the past, Facebook has also rolled out a number of company communications projects that were similar in nature, allowing customers to communicate directly with company representatives. This represents the latest push to broaden the scope of what it means to be a social product.