Look out, Slack. Facebook’s “Workplace” is now here in full. On Monday, October 10, the social media giant announced the availability of Workplace “to any company or organization that wants to use it.”
The platform — which matches Facebook’s design and offers a News Feed-style timeline for the workplace called “Work Feed,” alongside Groups, and Messenger features — will be available on a per user monthly payment scheme. This marks a change from Facebook’s earlier plans to offer the basic At Work platform for free and charge a premium based on additional features, The Information reports.
According to Facebook At Work director Julien Codorniou, the company decided to change the payment model based on its confidence that the platform “would get employees engaged.” Codorniou did not disclose how much the monthly subscription would cost.
From a user perspective, Facebook At Work allows you to create a separate work profile and connect with fellow employees from your company, regardless of their location. Users can join groups to collaborate on projects, track important updates from colleagues in the “Work Feed,” and create and join events.
On Monday, Facebook also debuted Multi-Company Groups, described as “shared spaces that allow employees from different organizations to work together, to extend collaboration beyond your company in a safe and secure way.” Workplace users can expect this feature to be rolled out within the next few weeks.
In November 2015, Facebook introduced a chat client — much like Messenger — to the platform. “Work Chat” allows users to connect privately with their co-workers by sending messages, participating in group chats, sharing links, photos and videos, and making voice calls. The chat client, which is also available as a mobile app, brings the platform closer to team-based messaging services such as Slack. Facebook is also reportedly working on introducing integration with other productivity platforms upon launch, notes TechCrunch.
Facebook began testing its “At Work” platform in early 2015, snapping up a number of global partners along the way, including the Royal Bank of Scotland, Norway’s DNB Bank, and India’s Yes Bank, among others. The company will be hoping that its wider rollout will finally put to bed the notion that Facebook is unsuitable for work, and merely serves as a distraction in the office space.
Updated on 10-10-2016 by Lulu Chang: Added news of Workplace’s official debut.
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