Facebook is reportedly working on and testing a new product called Facebook at Work, which is exactly what it sounds like – a version of Facebook for businesses. Employers and employees would be able to use productivity and professional networking features while keeping their personal profiles separate.
This is all according to a report from The Financial Times, which cites “people familiar with the matter,” and says the company has engineers in the UK working on it. The offering is reportedly already being tested with some companies.
According to the FT, Facebook at Work would let you chat with colleagues, connect with professional contacts, and collaborate over documents. The offering would compete with LinkedIn in some ways, as well as products like Google Drive, Microsoft Office, and Yammer.
Facebook isn’t saying anything about it, so we don’t have much more to go on other than this report at this point. That said, such a product certainly makes a great deal of sense for Facebook, and could have a lot of potential for significant use among businesses, seeing as how there are already over a billion people using Facebook, and most businesses already have a presence on the social network.
In fact, many business applications already tap into Facebook in various ways, and this could pose more of a threat to smaller third-party apps than the bigger names mentioned.
As the report notes, Facebook doesn’t have the greatest reputation when it comes to privacy, and that could deter some businesses, though Facebook continuously updates its policies, and tries to earn more trust in that department.
We’ll likely start hearing more about Facebook at Work this in the near future.
Update: Reuters is reporting that it’s hearing the service will launch in a few months.
Image via Facebook, Ustream