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Facebook have finally launched their enterprise collaboration solution, now snappily called Workplace. Amongst all the clamour around features and pricing model, we look at what else will be needed for it to succeed inside an organisation. 


Facebook’s move into enterprise collaboration, taking on the likes of Yammer and Slack, is something we discussed in a¬†blog post¬†about 18 months ago when it was first announced.¬†If we¬†were quite excited then, we’re… well more excited now.

We won’t¬†go into detail¬†here about the various features (chat, groups, video etc) or the interesting pricing model (per active user), as they’re covered off very nicely by TechCrunch.

Instead, we’re going to look at the three things needed to complete the¬†enterprise collaboration puzzle ¬†(assuming¬†Facebook have delivered a great platform):

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Process

  1. What’s it for?¬†There must be clear communication of what you’re expecting employees¬†to do with it. Just replacing email? Replacing everything?
  2. What’s appropriate?¬†Is this is a space¬†for any work communication? Or just client-focused stuff? Can I post my #GBBO worthy¬†drizzle-cake recipe? Have a set of house-rules.
  3. Over-support:¬†In the first week or so, over-support your employees. Give them no excuse to revert back or “have issues” getting connected.
  4. Keep it relevant: Set it up so that employees only see content relevant for them. Spammy messages are the fastest way to un-adoption (dis-adoption?).
  5. Benefits: Regularly show employees¬†it’s so compelling that they won’t want to go back to legacy ways of doing things.

People

  1. Embed in the culture: With absolute support from the very top, demand this is THE way to achieve the tasks set out in point 1 above. A few interesting updates from the boss (only available here) is a great way to draw people in.
  2. Pilot: Don’t procrastinate, but get a good¬†pilot group using the tool for a specific project first.
  3. Get a champion (or a few): It’s “change management 101”, but getting advocates across the business to help drive adoption is as important as top-down support.
  4. Make a big deal: Don’t be shy. Shout about the benefits and give the project its due attention. Have a social collaboration day/week to help drive interest.
  5. Stick and carrot: Ideally reward users for showing¬†initiative and collaborating in new ways… but make sure people know it’s not optional.

Are you thinking about using Workplace? What would it be replacing? Have you tried (and succeeded/failed) with another tool? Would love to know.

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