What’s Up with Yammer?
Yammer is a hot social media tool for business. The easiest way to describe its features is that it creates a Facebook like social media site specifically for your company and your business partners. It allows collaboration in some ways not unlike Microsoft SharePoint, but with a great deal more simplicity. It really makes setting up a company Intranet easy.
The big news last year was that Yammer was such a hit that Microsoft decided to purchase them. The purchase was completed around July of 2012 for 1.2 Billion. Microsoft began integrating Yammer into its network of products, and just recently has released information on how they plan to further integrate.
TechCrunch reports that Jared Spataro, Director of Microsoft’s Office Division talked to them about expansion of the product into their cloud offering, Office365. The immediate changes are that Office 365 Newsfeed will be replaced by a link to Yammer. In addition, Yammer will be enhanced with the ability to use rich document capabilities of Office.
In 2014, there is more coming. Microsoft plans to implement a 90 day update cycle for moving social enhancements into their Office365 platform. The connection between Office 365 and Yammer will tighten as a result.
There are plans to integrate Yammer into even the on-premise version of SharePoint. It is expected that the on-premise product will actually become a hybrid, where the Yammer features are integrated to the cloud, even though SharePoint is local on company owned servers. Microsoft plans to do this in a transparent fashion, but it may create concerns from those that have a clearly non-cloud strategy for systems.
For those of you who are Yammer fans, or want to check it out, it is still available in a “free” version and it is quite powerful. Just go to https://www.yammer.com/ and sign up.