RBS is banking on Facebook at Work – but will it work?

Facebook at Work took a huge step forward in the past couple of days as the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) announced plans to have 30,000 employees on the business platform by March 2016.

Facebook at Work is an enterprise version of the social network that is designed for businesses to enable greater collaboration among employees by taking advantage of the ‘consumerisation of IT’ – the idea that technology in the workplace should be as fun and easy to use as it is at home.

After months of pilot trials and testing, Facebook has unveiled RBS as its biggest customer yet, with the bank aiming to get 30,000 workers using the platform by March next year and its entire 100,000-strong workforce by the end of 2016. It joins around 300 other businesses currently using FB@Work.

Enterprise collaboration is already a crowded market, with platforms such as Google for Work, Chatter at Salesforce, Yammer, Hipchat and Slack already offering a similar service. Facebook is not currently charging businesses to use FB@Work but it plans to monetise eventually using a freemium model.

It’s not clear what FB@Work looks like or how it will work in detail, but it’s thought to resemble a very basic, secure, fenced-off version of Facebook that was originally conceived and used by Facebook employees themselves. Users will be able to connect with colleagues, follow each other’s updates and join work-related groups.

A major advantage of the platform will surely be the fact that nearly everyone uses Facebook outside of work so take-up will be higher and the need for training will be virtually non-existent. Only time will tell but the feedback from RBS so far has been glowing. What do you think of the idea? Would you be more inclined to use a Facebook at Work version? Let us know in the comments below.

October 26, 2015 - This article was written by Jenny Woolley

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