Yammer announced a new version that incorporates three new features: Yammer Pages, Yammer Files and Yammer Ticker.
Yammer Pages is a document collaboration tool that Yammer CTO Adam Pisoni describes as a cross between Google Docs and a wiki. Actually, it looks a lot like Whiteboards in Basecamp. Yammer Files is pretty much what it sounds like – a place to store and discuss files within Yammer. Users can edit Pages documents in real-time, attach files and follow both Pages and Files for updates. Pages are also connected to Yammer Groups and changes show up in the activity streams for both groups and individuals.
Yammer Ticker looks similar to Facebook’s sidebar, but is designed to surface activity stream updates from business software and updates to Pages. With the introduction of Ticker, Yammer is effectively splitting its activity streams in two: one area for human status updates, like the early days of Yammer as a microblogging tool, and the other area for other types of updates. As part of the launch, Yammer is adding more integration partners, such as Badgeville, Box, Expensify and Zendesk.
Pisoni says that Pages and Ticker are highly complementary. Yammer rolled out Pages internally first, but it wasn’t until it also rolled out Ticker that Pages really took off. Pisoni says this is because Ticker made the Pages content more visible by separating human written status updates from machine generated activity streams.
Pisoni also notes that Ticker makes two-way communication possible between Yammer and the applications that generate the activity streams. Pisoni says that these updates are moving Yammer from being a place where people just talk about work to a place where people actually do work. Many social collaboration tools, from Socialcast to tibbr to Qontext, are realizing that integrations with established business applications are a crucial aspect for making a truly useful collaboration platform. Companies are recognizing that context is key.