Facebook, aiming to gain market share in the office collaboration space where Slack dominates, has rolled out a way to add business tools to Workplace, its office collaboration tool.
According to a report in Reuters, Facebook is adding an Integration Directory that consists of more than 50 software services such as SharePoint from Microsoft, SurveyMonkey, and Jira, which is a tool for developers to manage projects. Workplace has been around since the end of 2016 — Facebook said in October that more than 30,000 organizations are using the product. Some of the customers include Match, Farmers Insurance and Starbucks. Facebook hasn’t provided more recent figures on usage of Workplace. Microsoft Teams has 200,000 companies using it, while Slack has 50,000 paying organizations using the service.
According to the report, while Facebook has long set its sights on the business market, its product offerings have resonated more with consumers. Reuters noted that IDC, the market research firm, projects the business collaboration market to hit $3.2 billion. It’s getting crowded with Google, Cisco and Atlassian Corp. entering it, noted the report.
For Facebook, any inroads it’s making in the enterprise market could be hurt by its data scandal with Cambridge Analytica, in which the now-defunct political consulting firm accessed the data on 87 million users without their consent. It has also sparked a series of investigations into the scandal, calls for more regulation of Facebook and other social media companies and the company’s CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, testifying before Congress. Facebook’s stock has taken a beating as a result, but it hasn’t lost much in the way of users. “Companies, for now at least, are being more conscious around Workplace because of the lack of clarity around data usage that has plagued the parent brand,” Wayne Kurtzman, an analyst with the research firm IDC, told Reuters. Not to mention that Workplace is in catch-up mode when it comes to integrations of business apps, given that Microsoft has 250 and Slack’s list stands at greater than 1,000, noted the report.