Tuesday, 14 November 2017 02:55

GlobalData says Facebook Workplace platform needs 'more work'

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Launched in October 2016, Facebook Workplace is "certainly disrupting some of the more traditional methods of communication and collaborating" but GlobalData believes Facebook can do better.

Data and analytics company GlobalData says there's "no question that Facebook has changed how we interact socially; however, with the company nearing the limit of consumer advertising as a source of revenue, Facebook now needs to deliver if it wants to break into the business market with its new Workplace platform".

It notes that Workplace by Facebook was introduced in October 2016, and is "a mobile and Web-based service offering the best of Facebook for the business world".

Those who use the platform know that it incorporates "news feeds, groups, events; audio, video, messaging and live streaming", with GlobalData stating "Facebook has also mustered a prodigious tool set to offer prospective customers".

Continuing to deliver some background, the company notes there is "a tiered pricing structure costing $3 a month per user for companies with less than 1000 active users (or $1 per month for companies with over 10,000 users) and free for non-profits and educational institutions, Workplace is very competitively priced".

This is where Brian Washburn, technology analyst at GlobalData, states: “By reducing email traffic, engaging with remote employees, and breaking down information silos, Workplace is certainly disrupting some of the more traditional methods of communicating and collaborating.”

This takes us to the statement that "Facebook recently revealed that it is working on an enterprise messaging service (known as WhatsApp Business), which the company is trialing with KLM Royal Dutch Airlines and Yoox Net-a-Porter Group.

"When brought to market, WhatsApp Business could be considered a prime channel for customer service, sales and marketing, and support given the apps 1 billion daily active users.

"However, winning in the collaboration and communications space is not easy. Despite having around 14,000 companies around the globe using Workplace, Facebook still has a few areas to improve before it can be considered a viable commercial tool – areas that its competitors are well aware of given their business heritage and experience."

So we thus get to Washburn's conclusion, which is: “Saddled with all the consumer-related associations of frivolity, Workplace still requires significant marketing, product development and support resources to help convey its relevance, improve its revenue and steal market share from industry incumbents.”

As a pretty impressive "data and analytics" company in its own right, I can only imagine that Facebook is well aware of this, and would presumably thank GlobalData for its insights, which you're now aware of, too.

The only real way to end this article is to now gently direct you to get back to work!

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Alex Zaharov-Reutt

One of Australia’s best-known technology journalists and consumer tech experts, Alex has appeared in his capacity as technology expert on all of Australia’s free-to-air and pay TV networks on all the major news and current affairs programs, on commercial and public radio, and technology, lifestyle and reality TV shows. Visit Alex at Twitter here.

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