That being said...this is potentially scary news for companies that are in the HR 2.0 business for lack of a better word. Typically their solutions have alumni management, stay in contact etc. that they tout. Well if your company has FB work and they later add the option to integrate private FB accounts of ex employees or something that's interesting. I know they say for now those are separate but I wouldn't be shocked if that changes eventually.
Edit: If they want to segment this they should have given it an entirely different name imo. I'm sure there are marketing people at FB that are way more brilliant than me but this seems like a typical positioning mistake. You think you need to rely on your powerful main brand when you really want to create a new brand because you're attacking a different positioning slot in customer's heads.
Don't have my Ries/Trout book at hand but it sounds familiar enough that I'll browse through it at home.
- Nobody is sitting there waiting for their news feed to update.
- Nobody is posting information there as they would with friends because THEY ARE AT WORK, they worry their boss will see something stupid. This is why memes and other things rarely get posted on work networks.
- Nobody wants to seem like they are slacking off talking on social networks instead of working (even on the work one).
- No memes and other fun related things, nobody cares and nobody checks.
Slack on the other hand was a huge hit. We have a few groups of like minded people who just chat it up. Usually for short bursts. Everyone prefers it over the social network tools. And everyone stays active in it.
A major feature is the notification that someone sent you a direct message (might be important) or sent a message to a room (meh) or sent a message to a muted room (probably not important).
As for some of your specific points:
> Nobody is sitting there waiting for their news feed to update.
I check the feed in the morning and usually again in the afternoon. It's not expected to be something you stare at for eight hours a day.
> Nobody wants to seem like they are slacking off talking on social networks instead of working (even on the work one).
Think that's more of a company culture issue - our use of it is appreciated/encouraged.
> No memes and other fun related things, nobody cares and nobody checks.
The vast majority of posts are work-related but we have plenty of groups strictly for non-work/fun purposes (e.g. we have a group for discussing video games).
The first thing that happens when joining a new company is that everyone sends me Fb friend requests.
That said, it looks like Slack is doing a great job of replacing email for in-office communication.
It seems very customary to add at least everyone on your direct team to Fb though.
We joined Facebook in the early days when you needed a .edu email address to join, so I've got a lot of college partying photos up there. I've always seen it more of a private space. Not sure if the time you join and your original perception of the service changes your use.
Wise choice, although I'm sure she has other ways of seeing what you get up to.
I see my coworkers for approximately 1/3 of my entire week. If I have a question for them it can wait until tomorrow/Monday. I have nothing to gain by them having access to photos of me at a bar with friends or pictures of me at a half marathon or something.
That said, I've long since resigned myself to the fact that I'm probably a rather poor representative of this generational group in which my birthday happens to fall.
This seems like an often repeated claim that has never really been proven in any meaningful way.
Slack is not positioned as a social network but as a productivity and collaboration tool, a role it fulfils really well.
If I had to choose I would pick Slack over Facebook at Work any day of the week.
Slack is great for quick-reaction and coordinated team org, but not suggest features, walk people through non-trivial decision, structure posts and comments.
At VMware we use SocialCast (not sure if we used it before we bought them or not, that was before my time) and it's certainly used in a "meaningful way". Not everyone in the company uses it regularly but certainly more than enough for a sufficient critical mass that if you have a question you can ask it in the appropriate group(s) and you'll most likely have an answer within hours (and often minutes).
The thing is, the biggest component of enterprise collaboration is information and knowledge management. If Facebook is leveraging its existing information management feature set this platform would be a no-go for me, because their whole set-up is designed to push new information at you and bury anything else as soon as possible. As well, chat or groups without file/information/data management features is a quarter-measure.
This is not a tool to compete with LinkedIn. It is a tool that competes with e-mail/mail lists.
Somethings now make much more sense. From a security point of view, in a company over one thousand employees, it is easier to add or remove employees as they are hired or they left the company.
Also it is easier to share work content for a limited audience while using your private Facebook account in a more casual way.
The main problem is that people doesn't have so much interest in checking what's in there. We have already other communication methods like the old good mail. So "Facebook at Work" is just another one to add to the list.
If you add it to your phone - I have done that - you will get notifications as the usual app. One of the problems is that you also will get them on weekends or when on vacations. That is not ideal.
As any social tool it requires a lot of fine tuning and also to match the culture and preferences of the company.
Probably it is a good move for Facebook taking into account cost/benefit, but it is never easy with social tools as Facebook competitors have seen in the past.
But the idea is to share the same kind of things that we shared in the Facebook group. We post about trainings, company social events, game clubs, meet ups, etc. Nothing is super-secret.
As code repository, for example, we use an on-premisses GitHub Enterprise.
In our company, communication is already highly splintered. We have so many ways of communicating, posting, sharing and chatting that nobody knows what is going on. It is also very distracting and time consuming. It is nearly impossible to do a conference over chat protocols now. Everyone wants to use "their own thing". It has become far worse than a TED talk I saw on meetings.
FB Work: Groups help you make decisions and keep your team on the same page.
Yammer: Organize all your team communication in one place with Yammer Groups. Create a single destination for your messages, files, and updates, where everyone has a view of what's going on without all the usual back-and-forth.
FB Work: Get through to the people you need right away with Work Chat.
Yammer: Spend less time crafting perfect emails, and more time doing. Conversations in Yammer make it easy to quickly share information on a topic, have active discussions around it, and agree on next steps.
FB Work: Find the answers, past group posts or the files you need using search.
Yammer: Find what you need, right when you need it. Yammer seamlessly enables connections to people and information from across your organization that you never knew existed, making it easier to move your work forward.
FB Work: As a Facebook at Work customer, you also have controls to manage your organization’s data how you see fit.
Yammer: Public Groups for working in the open; Private Groups for sensitive ideas. Safely collaborate with partners and customers with External Groups.
DISCLAIMER: Friends with a Yammer enployee
source: messed around with all these things to build automated compliance and archiving products.
Of course, that's for those that drink deeply from the Microsoft Kool Aid fountain, which I recognize as a group that isn't recognized fully on HN. ININ looks like a nice unified communications system.
For better of worse, my prejudice of facebook is that it is an outstanding source of the following types of content:
Humblebrag b.s. instagram photos
passive aggressive shitposting about politics
I can use social networks at work- but if they actually brought facebook in and demanded that we used it, I might consider quitting. I'd probably write a python script to repost random technical shit from a reasonable set of Twitter sources. But no way would I be happy about bringing facebook into my office.
Actually you know what.. probably
You need higher-ups to start the trend, and answer tough questions candidly, but once that is the case, people with things to say will put forward similarly clear and pointed arguments.
It's possible your experience with SharePoint was more an issue with who configured it. Or that you're thinking of SP2007?
P.S. I've been involved in rollouts (as a subsite admin, not IT) of SP2007 and SP2013.
If you are going to post something stupid, you have to be MOTIVATED to do so on sharepoint.
> If you are going to post something stupid, you have to be MOTIVATED to do so on sharepoint.
I suppose I'd call that a feature, then :)
Relevant xkcd: https://xkcd.com/927/
The only way to win is not to play the game.
Note that you can use various controls to mute the kind of posts you don't like and encourage ones you like. Facebook feed is kind of like a mirror of oneself ;).
I don't buy this at all, teams don't actually collaborate by sending each other green giraffe stickers.
For example, Zuck says he runs the company via Messenger - but a chat tool without selective muting/@mentions (or equivalent) is bound to be messy at the scale at which he's working. Similarly, Facebook's group chat isn't the best archival tool, nor does it support features like merging posts or transferring them from one group to another.
He does; he’s a bit of an outlier in how he can handle intense communications, but Messenger at his scale is not less manageable than e-mail — it mainly encourages extreme brevity.
The information filtering is done using groups and notification that allow everyone to target their attention; his is focused on high-level groups that distill details from other working groups.
That doesn't mean that Google Apps is the best tool, or even that it works well for everyone, but it means that people are willing to put up with a less than perfect solution that's integrated with the rest of the company.
Of course in the above FB scenario this is not a problem because they're the vendor.
It actually is. The vast majority of essential information is in there; HR tools, some IT stuff is based on integration with the Facebook codebase.
The business functionality has already existed (since FB uses its own platform internally), so its comparatively minor in engineering effort.
No seriously, that's pretty brilliant.
It can be interesting to share some technical news or to organize social events (pizza day for the office, hiking week-end). It can be a nice additional source of revenue for Facebook.
Some are casual references to insiders jokes, but all were generally clear enough to get the point across and funny enough to soften the blow of disagreeing. Positive reactions with the humour or intensity of an over-excited gif are great to convey not just a green light, but support from higher-ups.
There was a clear bias towards younger people in using those appropriately and consistently.
One of the best productivity hacks is to never log into Facebook or any social accounts when at work. Now, we are working on it which keeps sending you notifications all day long and especially over the weekend.
You like or comment saying - "Awesome, well deserved." The 100 people are going to do the same too. It's super annoying.
This and the fact that you move on to your feed and then shitty videos, pics, buzzfeed and boom ! your whole afternoon is gone !
Also, FB for Work has the biggest advantage from an Enterprise Software ever: they've already pre-trained 2 billion of the world's population on how to use it via the consumer version. Why not take advantage of that?
To further your point, I think Facebook's timeline dynamic complements Slack quite nicely. Slack is great for broad, real-time communication, whereas Facebook posts can be much more hyper-focused and the conversation can revolve around the specific topic over a long period of time.
For example, we have a development channel in our Slack. I can go back and browse through the chat log, but it's awkward to contribute a suggestion or thought to a conversation that happened yesterday. Everyone has moved on. Not the case on FB.
Slack _could_ try to tackle this, but I feel like it would need to be a different format than the chat room and it would be moving away from their strength.
I imagine Facebook for Work would happily fill a very similar role to Yammer, sitting comfortably alongside chat. Of course, they'll probably have a much easier time with distribution given the brand recognition.
I'm curious though, what aspects of it do you usually hear people complaining about?
Example quote: "... interruptions, even short ones, increase the total time required to complete a task by a significant amount."
Including a book I'm going to check out, "Deep Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World"
You're going to have a hard time convincing me that Facebook is synchronous when the entire power of News Feed (and what makes Facebook so much more powerful than Facebook) is its ability to keep you updated without requiring constant real-time attention.
Edit: I would just add that in an environment where every site action has some kind of real time notification tied to it, the async nature/expectation is greatly diminished. Especially in a work context. And so now you have to add 'good job!' and water cooler type notifications to that cognitive overhead too.
- Momentum for Google Chrome fixes the 'new tab' page so that it shows you what you want to focus on today rather than what you frequently get distracted by. https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/momentum/laookkfkn...
- SelfControl for OSX blocks sites for a specified period of time. https://selfcontrolapp.com/
As you can imagine, they had to touch just about every part of the Facebook code base to make it happen. They still managed to pull it off despite being a "remote" team and unknown entity at first. Great to see some major engineering projects being owned here in the UK.
Then there's moving to England, and the EU-related red tape. I love visiting the UK, but I'd never want to live there. And I'm a total anglophile.
I hear the salaries are less than in SF though. Cost of living (rent) may be a little lower to match.
I'm not being sarcastic (to the down voter). If you're an "A" talent, and are always used to working in certain type of environment, your view is quite skewed. How do you really know how a normal 30-people small business operate?
I can easily imagining the type of boss who thinks this would be good for their office to also believe that someone who doesn't have as many followers isn't a "team player".
It's also good to spot talent. We use this stuff for outreach and the "consulted", "informed" parts of RACI projects. Works well.
A support guy posted ASCII dick pic art in the all company forum.
We had some Bernie Sanders v. Ron Paul showdowns.
Overall, it has been really good. It's the go-to place for general HR questions. It's a great place to solicit testers and feedback. Definitely a net positive.
Specifically, most of the time someone would make a group for a study group and then everyone would use the group page to post meeting times, relevant files, etc. Group chats were used for quick communication, etc.
The benefit this has over something like Slack is that it is something everyone is used to and comfortable with already. People, for the most part, understand what a group page is and how to post on one. People get how to send an IM or start a group chat. There is virtually no learning curve.
Facebook, on the other hand, is an all-around shitshow.
(Microsoft does have some history of losing data, but that's not as malicious)
If I‘m using this as a regular workflow, I want to know that it won‘t go away one day.
Apple uses it in all their iPad and iPhone ads (e.g. Do more with iPhone). A while back a reporter called out Apple on their un-grammatical naming and an exec justified it saying that leaving out the "a/an/the" on their products made them seem more alive and less replaceable. It shows there's a deeper connection to the product and Apple wants to convey that message to their customers.
So yes, it's bad grammar but it's here to stay.
Basically, everything at FB is run through FB. (e.g. Groups for everything!) Someone decided that because FB loves FB so much, and a billion people use it, others would want to run their business through FB as well. Now that there's post and comment search, it's not useless as a repository of knowledge, but at the same time I have a hard time believing that others will love FB@Work as much as FB loves FB@Work.
You want to communicate? Every productivity solution has some chat, which can extend in seconds to a multi-user chat, to a call or video call (Hangouts, Office365). But yeah you can also use Slack, Hipchat or whatever, no rocket science for a decade. You want a feed of your coworkers? Why? You want to follow coworkers? Why? You have Facebook already.
Email, messaging, video calls, an office with collaborating features and a task/ticket management solution. THAT'S IT, you do not need more. Depending on the industry and profession some more and specialized stuff might be required (such as CRM, SFA).
I am wondering how the Facebook London remote team got the approval for this nonsense from Zuckerberg.
Whenever I go on linkedin, I'm spammed with an insane amount of articles about 'leadership' which are written in the worst kind of HR'ese by people that are blatantly trying to promote their brand. Facebook and Twitter are interesting because people share cool things which I like reading.
The kind of content that people create/share on linkedin makes me want to gouge my eyes out. Don't even get me started on 'influencers'. Ugh.
So - the problem with professional social media is that people sanitize everything so much that it's completely uninteresting to read. You could have a wonderful product, but it will be a beautiful shell filled with meaningless self promoting garbage.
Oatmeal should draw a comic about this.
As of now it is simply Facebook with a different colour and focused on a group. Nothing special.
But I do think that Facebook will end up releasing a better collaboration feature to help integrate teams into Facebook At Work.
The reason I love Slack currently is the various apps and addons you can add, like the Github bot that posts when a pull request is created, or the Trello one that posts when someone completes a task.
If FB adds something like this (or better), I think they will grab a large portion of the market that isn't already dedicated to Slack.
Then it will slowly be improving features to steal Slack users after that.
This is a feature whereby they get you to rely on their platform for various services and, when you need support, well, there ain't none. No email, phone, fax, telegram, hell not even smoke signals.
And, of course, the added bonus is the traditionally unannounced account shutdown or suspension for no apparent fucking reason at all or some bullshit unpublished reason. What's best is that these are often followed by cryptic emails informing you of the account suspension. To make things even better, these emails are crafted to actually provide negative information and send you to the imsane asylum if you dare try to make any sense out of them. And, of course, no recourse whatsoever.
Yeah, no, thanks. I like to sleep at night.
Keeping Facebook for personal stuff, and Hipchat/Slack/Google for professional communication seems to work well for me.
About.me is in trend where resumes aren't enough anymore - people use it tell about themselves as human beings not corporate drones. Maybe this is the continuation of this trend. Friends(humans first not employees) working on cool things.
Next up "Facebook staring at you watching you sleep".
I've found general software contracts to be a questionable thing to involve normal status employees in, cloud services (especially online tests and training) have muddied the water, and with social tool usage in the workplace, I have to wonder if there still is any water.
A lot of people rely on Facebook for engaging audiences and social media campaigns, so it's very understandable that some companies might want to use this. I don't see this as a replace ment for Slack, though, but rather some of the dreadful social media platform integrations out there.
What's the purpose of the same thing, but for work? To share a bunch of the same "professional" garbage that people share on LinkedIn and maybe try to look smart in front of the boss?
Seriously, who actually wants to use something like this?
My company has grown from 10 to 30 employees across 3 states, and the only communication tools used by everyone are Slack and Gmail.
I don't think this is something most people here would bother to actively use. Is there a minimum threshold where it becomes more commonplace? Maybe with 100 people?
If this is indeed round 2, this is great!
The demographic data they would mine would be invaluable to them, but for a company would be unconscionable to give to a third party. Especially one so historically lax about privacy.
You can mine my social life all you want, but when it comes to business, get the hell away.
I like it when people accidentally summarise life in 21st century capitalism on HN
It does not.
That being said, outside of the HN Community and outside of Tech savvy companies who know and prefer Slack, it's not completely useless. It's sure as hell better than Email groups and Calendar events in my opinion.
Seriously, their reputation for doing whatever they want with your information is well earned, what business would willingly expose their internal operations to this company?
I have so many things to say about this but the last time I said anything anti-F B on H N I got lawyers against me.
Please god people don't use this.
I'm going to qualify my sentiment.
FB thinks that "making the world more connected" is a good thing (TM) -- and in an utopian sense that may be true... But FB is not utopian.
See the fucking onion article. You all know the one.
The world doesn't need to be "more connected" --- it needs to be more conscious --- and very little work by many many startups are "making the world a better place"
The fact is that the world is still just as dark as always. Slavery is up, consumption begets inequality and the worlds economies are all about consumption.
How about creating an economy based on provisioning and providing. But because fuck you, that's why, is the philos of the day.
Zuck needs to read his letter to his daughter and then read that same letter to one who has zero relation or zero connection to FB. If the only person he is committed to making the world a better place for is his child through his tax shelter, then we will truly know the morality of FB.
Good fucking luck.
It's a terrifying beast to setup, but once setup correctly it's actually pretty fun.
Totally uninspiring. DOA.