Contents tagged with Yammer

  • Has Yammer played out its role?

    Tags: Yammer, Office 365

    And is Yammer dead?

    It is now three and a half years since Microsoft acquired Yammer and I think this is the end of Yammer, as a product/service. Let me explain myself, to avoid the flame war and hate mails that happened when I shared that my thoughts in the  Team Sites are dead post.

    I think Yammer as a brand will stay for a while, it's a strong brand and it's worked into so many PowerPoint decks from Microsoft that it would be hard to wash that away. But as a product or service Yammer is no longer of interest. I claim this due to a number of facts and observations over the last few years. People who follow me on social media cannot have avoided how I've been pretty aggressive in my comments about this product and I'm by no means alone.

    Dead end

    Here are some things that I think points very clear what is happening with Yammer.

    Yammer shut down its UserVoice channel: A couple of days ago Yammer out of the blue took down their UserVoice channel pointing to a custom feedback resource, that you have to register to get in to. This goes in the total opposite direction of what the rest of the Office teams are doing. And this on an area where Yammer actually was successful previously.

    Lack of integration: As I said it has gone three and a half years since Microsoft started working on integrating Yammer with Office 365. And what has happened since then. NOTHING! Nothing at all.  They haven't fixed the identity integration with Office 365. You need to maintain another profile in Yammer - not so much enterprisey.  Sign in is a pain - if you choose ADFS single sign on then you don't have for instance the suite bar - which means that this is really standalone. If you choose O365 sign on then you have a separate password.
    Also just recently the Yammer service moved into the Azure data centers, but still only in North America.
    The list goes on. Microsoft/Yammer has failed miserably on this topic.

    Enterprise Social Networks: Enterprise Social Networks (ESN) is on a decline in my opinion (I don't have any figures to back that with!). And what I mean with that is a standalone ESN is not interesting in the same way as before. There are some up comers, such as Slack, that does some really cool things but I think that audience is more narrow and I doubt Slack would work on some of the organizations that I work with. Generally thinking standalone ESN is a time waster, people and companies want to be efficient, so integration with other products is essential. Let's come back to this. Yammer is as much standalone as it can be, despite the Microsoft marketing stating it's a part of the Office suite.

    All the former Yammer leaders are gone: As far as I know, all the Yammer brains are gone. I remember SharePoint Conference in Las Vegas many years ago where they made a big deal of Adam Pisoni and his team at Yammer. That was the only and last time I saw them….

    Yammer constantly not listening at all, relying just on telemetry: I have had issues with Yammer since day one, issues that are bugs, feedback, not documented changes (dare I mention their APIs!) and I have tried getting in contact with the teams to give my feedback. It's been like talking to a brick wall! Basically any other team at Microsoft I can get in contact with if I need to, ranging from the Office teams, to the Windows teams and even CTOs has been taking my feedback and answering my questions. The only answer is when you have an issue with Yammer or give feedback is that - "we can't see that in out telemetry so then the users are not interested in that". If it's one answer I dislike, then it is that one. It becomes really comical when it comes to the "Mark all as read" function, that I think everyone using Yammer wants. But since that feature does not exist, they can't see it in their telemetry which in the Yammer world means that no one wants it. Duh!

    Lack of innovation: Three and a half years! Can anyone give me any new major feature in Yammer since the acquisition? Well, the Apple Watch App doesn't count. No, there has been no development what so ever on this product, except for some failed A/B testing attempts. Competitors is running in circles around Yammer. Sporadically we see Yammer stuff on the Office Roadmap, but almost always after they are released - just another sign that the Yammer team is not integrated with the Office team or have a different agenda!

    I probably missed a ton of other things, but this should make my point…

    So what is Microsoft doing and what should they be doing?

    Office 365 Groups and the Office 365 core services

    No surprise to those who follow me that Office 365 Groups should be in here. But this is important! I said lack of innovation, lack of integration, ESN is dead etc. with Yammer. All this has happened with Office 365 Groups, where I see a lot of good things grow!.

    First of all Office 365 Groups is integrating with the Office 365 service bringing the major key components together making it easy for users to collaborate, communicate, share and work together. Groups are bringing Exchange, SharePoint, Project and social networking together (could be under a Yammer brand) into one experience. This give Office 365 a unique experience compared to other competitors. With Yammer in the mix, it's a separate service, profile, user experience etc.

    Innovation! The innovation are taking place within the core Office 365 services. Take a look at the new Praise feature (directly stolen from Yammer) that now lives within Office Delve - where it should be. Take a look at the new Like feature that allows you to like e-mail messages - no more +1 e-mail messages. The same goes for the @mentions in the Outlook inbox. The majority of the social collaboration goes on in your inbox, why not let these features live here. I think this is a bold and good move.

    Actually I see the enterprise social pieces of this as an Enterprise Social Fabric that is tightly integrated with all the different core services and apps in Office 365. Not as a standalone service or product! And Yammer is not built for that.

    And for all this good things the Office 365 team also builds API's for use to use, in the new Office 365 Unified API. Something that is documented (another thing Yammer couldn't spell to).

    I'm seeing a really bright feature for Office 365 with Office 365 Groups and at the moment I will have hard to justify starting a Yammer on-boarding project with my customers. That would potentially lead them into a dead end and the off-boarding story of Yammer is most likely worse than the onboarding one. At least I will tell them this story, and they can make up their own minds.

    I would not be surprised that we see a number of Yammer obituaries in the upcoming 6 to 12 months.

    What do you think? Looking forward to an interesting discussion! Is Yammer as a service a dead end? Is the Enterprise Social Network "thing" going away?

  • What's new on the Office Roadmap - 2015-07-16

    Tags: Office 365, Yammer

    A week has gone since last update to the Office Roadmap and it looks like the Office 365 team is on a good pace.

    Changes 2015-07-16

    These are the changes I've noticed on the Roadmap, including my personal comments/take on some of them. One big shocker here and it's in the Cancelled section, check it out!

    Now Launched

    • Multi-Tier Cloud Standard for Singapore: something brand new that is just for Singapore that is launched? No description at all on the Roadmap - I'll get back with details.
    • Quarantine Message Body Preview: last week rolling out and now fully rolled out. Exchange admins can now really easy preview stuff in quarantine.
    • SharePoint Online storage usage model: "Auto" quotas are now fully rolled out
    • Workload-specific admin roles: Also the new admin roles are fully rolled out

    Rolling Out

    • Office 2013 Windows client modern authentication preview: new ADAL based AuthN is rolling out

    In Development

    • Office Online Edit in Yammer: Allows you to edit documents directly in Yammer. New on the roadmap
    • PSTN Calling in Skype for Business: US Only, more countries coming up, PSTN Call in feature. More awesome S4B features!
    • Public Folders: adding and removing favorites in OWA: Who said Public Folders was dead!

    Cancelled

    • Document Conversations for OneDrive for Business and SharePoint Online: CANCELLED! No surprise to me. Another Yammer feature that is going in to the bin. If Microsoft can do a big write-down on Surface, they sure should do it on Yammer as soon as possible. From Rolling Out.

    Moved off into Previously Released

    (Added since original post)

    • Add external collaborators to your internal Yammer conversations
    • Boards for Office Delve
    • De-clutter your Inbox
    • Delve (Codename Oslo) & Office Graph
    • DLP in Office 365 to protect Externally classified content
    • DMARC Support in EOP
    • First Release Select people
    • Office 2013 client update to support passive authentication using SAML
    • Partner Admin Center New Customer List Filters
    • Recommend OneDrive for Business for Large Attachments
    • Share OneDrive for Business folders externally
    • Skype for Business desktop application update

     

    That's it for this time folks!

  • What's new in the Office Roadmap - 2015-03-26

    Tags: Office 365, Yammer, Delve

    Here we go, another round of updates of the Office Roadmap. Don't we love them! And sometimes they roll out even before the roadmap is updated ;-)

    Changes 2015-03-26

    These are the change since yesterday.

    Now Launched

    • Office 365 Admin App Update: Directly to launched status

    Features now rolling out

    • Office 365 Groups: adding Like to Conversations: New stuff on the roadmap. Seems like the Office 365 (Exchange) team is building a whole new Yammer…
    • Notifications...Office 365 Notification Pane: (from development) This feature seems to cause some disturbance in the force. It's rolling out, but it seems like it is just half finished… It does not (at the time of writing this) work and the user experience is…confusing.
      Worth mentioning here is that it is rolling out for Groups to start with (something that was changed today as well from yesterday ;-)
    • Option for Passwords to Never Expire: (new on the list) Allows admin to use the UI to configure this rather than only PowerShell
    • Tighter Yammer Integration with Delve: (new on the list) More Yammer in Delve. Why not more Groups in Delve?

    Features now In Development

    • Office 365 Setup Wizard: (new on the list) The replacement for the basic and advanced setup options. The wizard will include migration from on-premises, Google Apps and more! Really neat!

  • What's new in the Office Roadmap - 2015-03-19

    Tags: Office 365, Yammer, Exchange Online

    Some small but interesting additions on the roadmap today.

    Changes 2015-03-19

    New stuff on the roadmap

    • Yammer support for Android Wear devices: (Directly to Launched) Yammer on your wrist! Ok, where's the Microsoft Band app?
    • Enhanced NDRs: (In Development) Microsoft will now help you understand the cause and reason of NDRs in a much easier way.
    • ExpressRoute for Office 365: (In Development) You want your own redundant fat pipe to the Office 365 Data Centers - then this is your feature. Will be launched this fall.

  • What’s new in the Office Roadmap – 2015-03-13

    Tags: Office 365, SharePoint Online, Yammer, Exchange Online, OneDrive

    RoadmapIt’s not easy to keep up on what is happening in the Office and Office 365 world. Everything is changing so fast. Fortunate for us Microsoft and the Office product group has created the Office Roadmap site (http://office.com/roadmap) with all (almost at least) the details on what is in development and rolling out etc. It became quite famous the other week when the new forms solution went from In Development to Cancelled.

    Unfortunately it is quite hard to stay up to date on what’s changing in the Roadmap, and until Microsoft provides us with better details with regards to this, I thought that I could help out. Actually a while back I built a PowerShell script that automatically notifies me of any changes to the Roadmap – and why keep that a secret?

    I’ll try to blog the changes as soon as I discover them, and I’ll add my personal thought on the change…

    Changes 2015-03-13

    (Sorry, about the wrong date at the first edition of this post...)

    These are the changes as of today and I divide them into a couple of sections

    New stuff on the roadmap

    • AzureAD sync for Yammer: (In Development) We’re getting there
    • Clutter for your inbox on by default: (In Development) I don’t generally like stuff turned on by default, but this might be an exception
    • Office 365 ProPlus user activation management: (In Development) looking forward to this!
    • OneNote Staff Notebook for Education: (Launched) Brand new addition to the roadmap
    • Quarantine Message Body Preview: (In Development)

    Now launched

    • Exchange Transport Rule: Recipient Notification Action: From In Development
    • Improved Yammer thread visuals with Card View for iOS/Android: From In Development
    • OneDrive for Business Sync for Mac: Wonder if we’ll see the OD4B app on the fancy watch?
    • Outlook Web App options update:
    • PIN lock and other updates for Outlook for iOS & Android: directly to launched
    • Quarantine Bulk Release: Another direct to launch feature
    • RMS support for document libraries: From In Development, awesome stuff!
    • Touch Design Enhancements for SharePoint Online and OneDrive for Business

    Features now rolling out

    • Compliance Center for Office 365: Went from In development to rolling out
    • DLP in Office 365 to protect Externally classified content: Now rolling out
    • eDiscovery Center Scale Increase: Went directly from In development to Launched
    • Partner Admin Center New Customer List Filters: From In development.
    • Partner admin mobile app: From In Development
    • Workload-specific admin roles: From In Development. This is the best news this time! Finally!
    • Yammer groups prioritization: From In Development

    Other changes

    • SharePoint Online storage usage model: Moved from Rolling Out to In Development?

    Moved off the list, into the previously released bucket

    • Enhanced Bulk Mail Protection for Exchange Online Protection
    • Group Search in Yammer
    • Groups in Office 365 for Outlook Web App and OneDrive for Business
    • New wave of Yammer web and mobile language localization updates
    • Office 365 IRS 1075 Compliance Support
    • Office 365 Message Encryption- Apps for iOS and Android
    • Office 365 services hosted from Microsoft Japan datacenters
    • Office 365 sign-in for Yammer
    • OneDrive for Business for Office 365 ProPlus subscription plans

About Wictor...

Wictor Wilén is the Nordic Digital Workplace Lead working at Avanade. Wictor has achieved the Microsoft Certified Architect (MCA) - SharePoint 2010, Microsoft Certified Solutions Master (MCSM) - SharePoint  and Microsoft Certified Master (MCM) - SharePoint 2010 certifications. He has also been awarded Microsoft Most Valuable Professional (MVP) for seven consecutive years.

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