Facebook is rolling out a new version of its social network for the workplace called ‘Facebook at Work’.
The service will allow users to create their own work account, separate from their personal Facebook account, in which they can use the platform to interact with coworkers.
Facebook at Work will offer almost all the same features as Facebook’s core service, including profiles, a scrolling news feed, groups, pages, ‘likes’, events and the ability to follow other users.
The platform looks identical to the regular Facebook service, but with a different colour scheme.
There are some minor exceptions though, such as the inability to play games.
Facebook at Work on an Android smartphone.
Facebook describes the service as “a tool for coworkers to communicate and collaborate in a professional environment on Facebook.”
Julien Codorniou, director of global platform partnerships at Facebook, was quoted by Reuters as saying:
“I would say 95 percent of what we developed for Facebook is also adopted for Facebook at Work,”
When a user creates a work account, their profile automatically includes information provided by their employer, including details such as their name, job title, and work contact info.
According to Facebook: “Your work account is only visible to people at your company and is separate from your personal account. What you share to your work account can only be seen by people in your company.”
A company spokeswoman said that Facebook at Work will be available for all companies to use once it’s launched, adding that Facebook plans to charge “a few dollars per month per user” for premium services such as analytics and customer support.
The service has been in development for nearly a year and a half.
Facebook started testing the service in a closed beta in January. Since then, over 100 companies have been involved in the beta testing, including the likes of Heineken and the Royal Bank of Scotland.
Facebook at Work will compete directly with other business social networks, such as LinkedIn and Microsoft’s Yammer.