Facebook set to launch professional version

22 Dec 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Facebook at Work to launch in coming months, allowing businesses to sign people up to social network.

Facebook at Work, Facebook’s professional version of its social network, is expected to launch in the coming months, after spending a year in tests, a company executive said.The firm reckons that the time blight will hit worker desktops in the next few months and will not be used for things like crushing candy or, presumably, assessing the global cat situation. The new service, geared towards workplace collaboration, is nearly identical to its ubiquitous social network, with a scrolling news “feed”, “likes” and a chat service. “I would say 95 percent of what we developed for Facebook is also adopted for Facebook at Work,” Julien Codorniou, director of global platform partnerships at Facebook, told Reuters. The service will be open to all companies once launched and Facebook plans to charge “a few dollars per month per user” for premium services such as analytics and customer support, a company spokeswoman said.

The online career market, which includes LinkedIn and Monster Worldwide, is worth about $6 billion a year, market research firm IDC had said in August. The French resort company will offer the service to all its 13,000 employees through summer 2016, Anne Browaeys-Level, Club Mediterranee’s chief marketing & digital officer, told Reuters.

Until quite recently, it was common practice for companies to ban or even block Facebook on work computers, claiming that it merely served as a distraction. What users share via their work accounts can only be seen by other people in the company, and what they share on their personal accounts can only be seen by friends and others based on their privacy settings. A survey by computer services provider HCL Technologies in 2011 found that half of workers had been banned from using Facebook and other social networks in their offices, due to employers’ fears that their business reputations could be at stake.

The move puts Facebook in direct competition with other established collaboration tools targeted at the business market – including Yammer, which Microsoft bought for $1.2bn in 2012, Jive and Huddle – as well as challenging LinkedIn. Yammer operates a ‘freemium’ model, whereby some of the features are free to use but companies have to pay a subscription for access to the full product.

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