We have seen Yammer in action for a while now. By looking at Yammer blogs, I am beginning to see a pattern developing and that is the users want to turn Yammer to something more that it probably is capable of. Requests like:
– Ability to create HTML pages on Yammer (you can only do notes right now)
– Having versions on documents
– An entry to the companies News page
– A place where user profiles are updated
– Assigning tasks to colleagues and co-workers
Sounds familiar? Are these not the basic uses cases for enterprise collaboration on a given Intranet? Having designed and provided solution architecture for many Intranets word-wide, I have never seen a tool evolving so fast almost taking over the traditional intranets.
So why users and content managers are beginning to prefer their network on Yammer over their intranet? The answer is simple, better User Experience (UX). In fact, this phenomenon is better defined as Attentional Experience (AX). People not only find it easy to post and receive information (basic social requirements), they also feel they can make connections to those in their company that otherwise would have been virtually impossible.
When you can get the opportunity to get connected with your c-level executives and have your views and ideas easily published and even get praised, well, why not get the same visibility (attention) on your documents, lists, blogs publishing and webpart pages?
Are we asking too much of Yammer
Now, here comes the more complex/sophisticated requirements I have seen develop.
– Building API’s between various systems and Yammer
– Ability to do your project management on Yammer! yes, for real.
– Getting your transcriptional and transactional data into your colleagues
This bears the question, should anything you do within your intranet should have a social element wrapped around it? The answer in my view is, why not?
In fact Microsoft realized this last year which led them to purchase Yammer. This clever move positioned SharePoint in a much better state from the UX perspective. Moreover, the announcement of moving Yammer files onto Sky Drive proved to be yet another another incentive for using Yammer alongside SharePoint on the cloud.
I believe should you choose to have your Intranet and Yammer running as 2 separate instances, Yammer will eventually take over and you will have fewer and fewer visitors on your intranet, but, should you choose to have a social intranet by integrating Yammer throughout your intranet, whether you choose today’s basic integration with SharePoint, or the deeper integration through Open Graph. Either way, you are paving the way for a great social intranet to come.
Meanwhile, for prototyping purposes and building good API’s with Yammer, I recommend you use Zapier to get familiar with it I created a Jira integration with Yammer literally within minutes using Zapier.
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