Soon ‘Facebooking’ at work might not bother your boss. Instead, you might just be encouraged to spend more time on the social network. Facebook is planning to launch its enterprise social network (ESN) for businesses, simply named ‘Facebook at Work’.
The ESN, still in beta mode, is already being used by 450 companies and about 60,000 companies across the world are in the queue. The social media giant expects ESN to be a major source of revenue in the future.
In India, companies like Godrej, YES Bank and L&T Infotech have already started using ‘Facebook at Work’. The social media giant plans to reach out to global working population of three billion. It is targeting a host of Indian start-ups, including Paytm, Zomato, Practo, Delhivery, AskMe and Urban Ladder to ramp up the numbers.
“India has turned out to be a very important market for us as the growth we have seen here is phenomenal. Start-ups as well as traditional companies have shown a lot of interest in the product,” said Julien Codorniou, director, platform partnerships. “We’ve been adding a new company every day over the past few months, and India has seen the fastest adoption rates,” he added.
‘Facebook at Work’ is an enterprise version of the standard Facebook platform. Similar to the popular social networking site in terms of look and feel, ‘Facebook at Work’ has profiles, news feed, groups and messages. The news feed shows latest facts and figures from the groups and channels an individual follows. The groups can either be open for all employees of an organisation or be accessible to specific teams.
Two different companies, if they are on the platform, can connect to each other seamlessly. Facebook would also allow usage of utility software such as Office365.
It retains the famous ‘Like’ button and other similar features. “These are things we picked up from Facebook as they are effective and have worked there as well,” said Codorniou.
The global launch of ‘Facebook at Work’ is still a few months away but the beta mode has found many takers, reinforcing the company’s belief that it would be a runaway success. “At present, we are giving it to the companies with at least 5,000 employees. Once we launch it (the full version), we would open it to other companies as well,” added Codorniou.
“The bigger the company, the better,” said Codorniou. Among the biggest global clients on the platform are Royal Bank of Scotland and Telenor.
Facebook will now directly compete with Slack, HipChat, Yammer and a few others in this space. The company said the ESN would work on both mobile and desktop.
“Rolling out Facebook at Work to companies in India is a significant milestone. As the workplace transforms, businesses want new ways for co-workers to collaborate effectively and be more productive. We are excited at the high rate of adoption globally, and I look forward to working with all businesses in India,” Codorniou added.