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Workplace by Facebook: FAQ

By - Source: Toms IT Pro

In January of 2015, Facebook launched Facebook at Work, a platform that lets businesses create their own internal social networks. That platform has a new name: Workplace. But, it retains the same tools it had under its previous moniker that allows coworkers to collaborate in real-time with one another using messaging, telephony and video.

So, what is it exactly, what are its features and how much does it cost? Those are just a few of the questions we will answer.

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Q.: What is Workplace by Facebook?

A.: Workplace is a social app that brings coworkers together to communicate and collaborate on any number of projects using messaging, voice/telephony and video. The platform is similar to Facebook and features tools such as News-Feed, Groups, Messages and Events.

Q.: Why would I want it for my company or business if it’s similar to Facebook?

A.: Companies rely on specific tools and security for work environments and Workplace provides a tool-set that provides those requirements with features such as SSO (Single Sign-On) and secure identity management. It also provides enterprise support and analytics as well as the ability to retain ownership of company data produced by employees, none of which is featured in your basic Facebook.

Q.: How should it be used and what tools does it replace?

A.: Companies that adopt Workplace by Facebook can reduce or eliminate some of their internal technology, such as the intranet, telephony systems, video conferencing systems and distribution lists. It goes beyond internal systems and can be used on mobile devices as well, allowing for collaboration anywhere in the world. Not to mention the platform is easy to use, seeing as how it is so similar to Facebook that there is virtually no training required to use it.

Q.: How much does it cost, is it subscription based?

A.: Workplace Premium offers a three-month free trial. After that, it costs $3 per month for up to 1,000 users, $2 per month for 1,001 to 10,000 users and $1 per month for more than 10,000 users. Or you can opt for the Workplace Standard, which is free but doesn't come with administrative controls or some of the key enterprise features.

Q.: How do I or my company set up Workplace?

A.: Companies can sign up for Workplace and then gain access to the app online. Employers can then create separate logins for their employees to gain access to their Work accounts. Additionally, users can link additional profiles and keep them all in one area. If an employee leaves the company for any reason, the employer can terminate or retain their account along with all the data.

Q.: Will my personal Facebook information/updates be visible in my Workplace account?

A.: No, Facebook and Workplace are two separate platforms and not integrated with one another. Employers do not have access to personal accounts unless employees grant them access. Additionally, users do not need a Facebook account to use Workplace.

Q.: Can I connect Workplace to my other services, such as Salesforce?

A.: Yes, Facebook has expanded its Workplace platform to third-party integrations for file sharing with vendors such as Microsoft, Google, Salesforce and Dropbox. It also expanded its eDisocovery and security compliance capabilities with CS Disco, Netskope, Smarsh and SKyhigh. 

Q.: Does it have bots?

A.: Yes, Workplace now lets companies create custom bots for accomplishing tasks such as expenses, meeting scheduling and reminders. Bots will be accessible in the Work Chat app and Groups. 

Q.: How many companies are using Workplace, anyone we know?

A.: There are more than 14,000 companies using Workplace around the world, including retailers, telecom companies, financial institutions, the entertainment industry and real estate companies among a host of others. Notable companies using Workplace include advertising agency Discovery Communications, Viacom, Campbells, Oxfam and Starbucks.