Meta Discontinues Workplace – Transition to Viva Engage

I’ve worked with lots of customers over the last few years that use Workplace from Meta as an employee engagement tool, as well as using Microsoft 365 across their organisation. Many of them also have a SharePoint intranet.

When asked why they have multiple disparate comms tools in place, the response was generally that Workplace was better for engaging frontline workers. Reaching and engaging frontline and remote workers is often a communication team’s biggest challenge, and many felt that Workplace was simply the best tool for the job.

I agree that was probably true 5 years ago. Back then, Workplace was often still referred to as ‘Workplace from Facebook’ and it was so similar to Facebook itself that it was instantly familiar to a large proportion of the workforce Whilst Yammer (as it was called at the time) was often considered more clunky and more business-like, and gaining widespread engagement was challenging as a result.

Microsoft brings everything together

The landscape has changed significantly over the last 5 years however. The use of Facebook has declined, certainly amongst Gen Z. I’ve heard lots of people describe Facebook as ‘being for old people’, whilst other tools like Snapchat, TikTok and Instagram have become the comms tool of choice for the majority of young people entering the workforce.

The boom of Microsoft 365 over that time has clearly changed the digital landscape of many organisations. Microsoft Teams’ usage soared during the pandemic, with usage rates increasing from 20 million regular users in 2019, to 320 million today. Microsoft Teams has become familiar even to frontline workers, with many organisations now also using Viva Connections to push out company-wide comms within the Teams app.

At the same time, the disconnect between different Microsoft applications has been bridged, with SharePoint, Microsoft Viva and Teams now working much more harmoniously than before. 5 years ago, the Office 365 suite often felt like a jigsaw puzzle of disparate applications. These days the Teams app and SharePoint pages do a great job of bringing everything together.

Workplace from Meta is being discontinued

Meta surprised many people in May 2024 when it announced it will be shutting down Workplace in 2025. After 1st September 2025, Workplace will become read-only until 1st June 2026, when access will end and all data will be deleted. This decision will affect many organisations worldwide, with Meta reporting there are 7 million paid subscribers to the system.

Workplace from Meta vs Viva Engage from Microsoft

So, with the imminent demise of Workplace from Meta, now seems like a great opportunity for its users to consider moving to Viva Engage for its employee engagement platform. Viva Engage is already included in many Microsoft 365 plans, and it can be quickly, easily and seamlessly deployed across your existing digital workplace. Viva Engage can be used to share social alongside corporate content (in the same way that Workplace could), whilst also enabling communities to be created to suit any business need.

Why is Viva Engage the best Meta Workplace alternative?

  • Viva Engage helps to bring people together across the organisation and facilitates communication and collaboration
  • It provides a single location to connect leaders, coworkers, frontline workers and communities
  • Provides an experience where people can crowd-source answers and ideas, share their work and experience, and find belonging at work
  • Enables community building, leadership engagement, knowledge sharing, and self-expression
  • Connects people based on interests, topics, roles, and experiences
  • Empowers your organisation to reach and engage employees at scale
  • Sparks engagement between leaders and employees to amplify your organisation’s vision and shape its culture

What’s more, using Viva Engage provides opportunities for a much more joined-up ecosystem of communication channels. Viva Engage integrates with both SharePoint and Teams to provide a seamless experience for users.

It’s simple to add Viva Engage feeds to your SharePoint intranet pages using the Viva Engage web part. In Teams, you can add a Viva Engage tab to a channel, allowing users to access Viva Engage directly from where they spend more of their working day.

How to migrate from Workplace to Viva Engage

Intelogy has helped lots of organisations build effective communications platforms using the Viva suite of applications, with or without a SharePoint intranet. If you are nearing the end of your Workplace journey, then we would be glad to help you take the first step on your Viva journey.

We can offer a secure migration of your data from Workplace to Viva Engage whilst ensuring your users are supported with appropriate change management and adoption.

Other alternatives to Workplace from Meta

Meta has recommended just one alternative for existing users (Workvivo, now owned by Zoom), but the market for employee engagement apps and standalone intranet products is huge and provides an array of other options. The products on the market vary widely in features, benefits and costs, but all will do a good job of replacing the core communications capabilities of Workplace.

The decision around the best tool for your organisation will often come down to your IT strategy. If you are looking to maximise your investment in Microsoft 365 and integrate all systems as tightly as possible into your existing digital workplace, then Viva Engage may well be the best tool for you.

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Jeremy Stewart
Jeremy is an experienced Account Manager who thrives on helping customers get the best from their investments. He loves to build long term relationships with customers and see the successes they have. His whole career has been in software, including over 15 years’ experience with digital workplace.
Published On: June 5th, 2024 Categories: Teamwork & Employee Experience

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