Why your boss may soon insist you spend a lot more time on Facebook
If your company hasn’t blocked it, you probably spend part of your work day scrolling through Facebook. Soon, you might be required to use Facebook while you’re on the clock. But there’s a catch: you have be friends with your boss and all your coworkers.
On January 14, 2015, Facebook launched a corporate version of its website. The new Facebook at Work is an internal communications tool that will allow employees to post news, questions, problems or new business ideas. As with the regular Facebook, an algorithm will decide what’s of interest and importance to each employee and staff will be able to create groups and use Facebook Messenger.
And yes, Facebook at Work will have a different colour scheme so any co-workers peeking over your shoulder can quickly see that you’re working and not watching cute cat videos posted by a friend.
Facebook at Work allows users to swap between a personal and work account, with publicly shared information being visible on both accounts. For now, Facebook at Work is limited to select companies.
Would you like Facebook at Work?
While much of the 20something cohort is sure to be on board with Facebook at Work, less tech-savvy generations could be left behind. I’m 26 and I can’t imagine my 50-something parents switching between work and personal Facebook accounts, posting questions on their feed and using Facebook chat.
In the same way that I’m less comfortable leaving a voicemail or even picking up the phone to call a co-worker, my parents’ generation is less comfortable with being too connected online.
That being said, it’s the tech-oriented, Gen X- and Y-staffed companies that are more likely to sign up for Facebook at Work. At one online company I worked for, the under-30 editorial team used Facebook chat to keep in touch throughout the day. Facebook at Work would have been the perfect way to share ideas and cut down on emails without the distraction of non-work friends Facebook posts.
From another perspective at my current government job, I could list out many reasons why Facebook at Work or another internal communications tool like it probably wouldn’t work. The staff are older, email is used for approval processes, external suppliers are used and the workforce is massive.
For now, a small group of test companies are using Facebook at work with one exception: Facebook itself. For ten years Facebook has been using Facebook to connect its employees and make announcements. And if it works for Facebook, you can be sure that Facebook at Work has a good chance of ending up on your computer soon.
Should businesses use Facebook at Work? Why or why not? Let us know in the comments below.