There are two primary reasons that Facebook could become attractive for a corporate business environment:
According to recent ESG research, we already know that 44% of respondents would use or consider using consumer-based credentials for authentication. That is impressive! The reason? It’s simple: improved end-user experience and helping integrate new mobile applications into the workforce. Facebook is the sleeper candidate to help solve identity and access management for the business. I can’t imagine Facebook identity protecting highly secure, mission-critical applications with piles of corporate information, but I can absolutely see where Facebook integration with existing or planned identity platforms would be very valuable for a new tier of mobile applications and applications that have less sensitive data.
The issue of e-mail overuse and misuse exists in nearly every company. We have taken a great means of communication and turned it into a time-consuming, hectic necessity that we have to monitor and manage constantly. Group e-mails, misread emotions, and lengthy e-mail trails have all lead to an inefficient and less than effective means of communication. On the flip side, many folks have taken a more active role in social communication in their personal lives and have replaced e-mails with communication tools that they can quickly scan to check for relevance, monitor activity, and interact with friends and families.
I use Facebook and have a love-hate relationship with it. On one side of the coin, I see a bunch of useless posts, false veneers, and unnecessary noise. On the other side, I get a quick update and perspective on events that I would have otherwise missed, passion for community, and desire to participate. The latter all being positive outcomes for a business environment. If a company has a segment of the business that is abusing e-mail, which results in an ineffective use of time, and they have a younger workforce, the potential for Facebook (as well as other business apps like Yammer, SalesForce Chatter, Slack, etc.) becomes very valid.
I’m still a giant fan of the telephone as the most effective means of communication, but expect to see Facebook work its way into businesses. With claims of an existing 300 companies in beta and marque accounts like the Bank of Scotland with plans to roll Facebook for Work out to over 100,000 employees, I would expect to see the activity ramp sharply as companies embrace Facebook’s knowledge of the end-user and ingest improved means of communication and collaboration inside modern day businesses.