Everything your boss hates about Facebook–namely, employees constantly checking it on their phones while they’re supposed to be at work–just got rolled over into a new productivity package that the social media giant hopes to monetize in a big way.
Workplace, Facebook’s subscription-based productivity software, has launched as a messaging and teamwork platform that skips the ads and cat videos but relies on the seamless functionality that users already understand. Basically, the company has built a fully customizeable version of itself, but instead of the traditional newsfeed users will see only posts from members of the team. Messaging features are still in place to foster communication, but group-worthy content is centralized for better viewing by everyone on the team.
This is a departure from Facebook’s previous and long-held revenue model, which has focused on paid advertising. The company has made a science out of targeting specific ads to specific markets while still claiming not to violate its users’ privacy. In this model, though, a low per-user subscriber fee means participants in a group workflow only see relevant content that pertains to the team, rather than ads for outside content.
Workplace is specifically designed with mobility in mind, and as a compliment to the users who already rely on their smartphones for social media it makes sense that their work would follow them in the same way. For now, Facebook has said it’s working on predominantly US and UK business customers, although the largest demographic of business users is located in India. To date, the company claims more than 1,000 businesses have signed on to use the software.