Are Office 365 Groups Displacing Yammer?

Yes, this is my attempt at a click-bait title for the SharePoint and Office 365 community. But you have to admit there’s a Kardashian-like interest in the messaging feud between Office 365 Groups and Yammer, and whether the former is quietly (or quickly, depending on who you ask) displacing the Yammer platform as the vehicle of choice for team collaboration. At the Ignite event in Chicago earlier this month, I must have heard a dozen different arguments over whether Yammer was going away or not. Honestly, Microsoft needs to clean up the messaging a bit….which means making some CollabTalk TweetJam May 22nd, 2015decisions on how to position each. For me, the line of demarcation between Groups and Yammer is the corporate firewall: if I want to collaborate inside of the firewall, and specifically around projects and shared calendars, then Groups is the right place to work. But if I want to create an external community to collaborate with partners and customers, Yammer is my destination. Some folks on the product team may not like this distinction, but its what works for me, and as the features within Groups expands, I see my collaboration activities gravitating there.

In this month’s CollabTalk tweetjam, taking place this Friday, May 22nd at 9am PDT, the community will once again come together to hash it out over Twitter, this time discussing “The Imminent Rise of Office 365 Groups” and whether or not the consensus is that Yammer is on the decline. You’ll hear from a panel of experts, as well as interested members of the community, as they share opinions and customer experiences to (hopefully) answer this question. Simply follow along on Twitter, or join the conversation at Twubs.com/CollabTalk 

If you’ve never participated in one of these tweetjams, they can be a lot of fun – and for those like me who do a lot of blogging, they are also a great source of material for future posts. Within each hour-long session using the Twitter UI of your choice (Twitter.com, Hootsuite, Tweetdeck, Twubs, whatever) we will go through a series of questions over the course of the hour, responding to Q1, Q2, Q3 and so forth with A1, A2, A3 and always including the #CollabTalk hashtag with your answers. Feel free to reply as often (or as little) as you’d like, ask your own follow up questions, share relevant links, retweet others, and engage with the audience.

The questions we will discuss during the session include:

  • What key business scenarios do Office 365 Groups solve?
  • How does the Office 365 Groups functionality fit into your social strategy?
  • Where does Yammer fit into the Office 365 Groups story?
  • What is the hybrid story for Office 365 Groups, if any?
  • Are there any governance or management concerns for Office 365 Groups?
  • What impact will Groups have on the overall Office 365 roadmap?
  • Are Office 365 Groups the next “big thing” for the platform? If not, what is?

Participating on this panel are a number of MVPs and experts on SharePoint, Yammer, and a number of other social platforms. Of course, this is open to the public, so please join in the discussion!

  • Alan Lepofsky (@alanlepo), vp at Constellation Research
  • Naomi Moneypenny (@nmoneypenny), Office365 MVP and cto at ManyWorlds
  • Chris "Mr. Social" Slemp (@cslemp), senior business program manager at Microsoft
  • Martina Grom (@magrom), Office365 MVP and co-founder and ceo of atwork information technology  
  • Marc Anderson (@sympmarc), consultant at Sympraxis Consulting 
  • Jeffrey Schwartz (@JeffreySchwartz), editor at 1105 Media, including Redmond and Redmond Channel  
  • Jordi Plana (@joplana), founder and ceo of Beezy 
  • Barry Jinks (@BJinks), founder and ceo at Colligo
  • Benjamin Niaulin (@bniaulin), SharePoint MVP and evangelist at ShareGate 
  • Noah Sparks (@noahsparks), customer success manager at Microsoft   
  • Nick Kellett (@nickkellett), SharePoint MVP and cto at StoneShare  
  • Jeff Willinger (@jwillie), director of collaboration and social business at Rightpoint
  • Jussi Roine (@jussiroine), SharePoint MCM and MVP, chief architect at Onsight
  • Vlad Catrinescu (@vladcatrinescu), SharePoint MVP and founder of SharePoint-Community.net 
  • Jeff Fried (@jefffried), cto and vp of engineering at BA Insight
  • Nik Patel (@nikxpatel), principal consultant at Slalom Consulting
  • Darrell Webster (@darrellcwebster), Office 365 MVP and SharePoint trainer at ShareThePoint.com
  • Eric Riz (@rizinsights), SharePoint MVP and ceo of Empty Cubicle  
  • Adam Levithan (@collabadam), SharePoint MVP and ceo of Empty Cubicle  
  • Michelle Caldwell (@shellecaldwell), SharePoint MVP and director of collaboration at Avanade 
  • Fabian Williams (@fabianwilliams), SharePoint MVP and senior consultant at Planet Technologies  
  • Robert Toro (@SharePointToro), SharePoint practice director at Slalom 
  • and your host, Christian Buckley (@buckleyplanet), Office365 MVP and Managing Director, Americas for GTconsult

The invites just went out, so I expect the panel to expand in the next day or so. If you would like to participate as one of our experts, please drop me a line at cbuck@gtconsult.com, otherwise I’ll see you online this Friday! 

Christian Buckley

Christian is a Microsoft Regional Director and Office Apps & Services MVP, the Founder & CEO of CollabTalk LLC, an independent research and technical marketing services firm based in Salt Lake City, Utah, and fractional-CMO for revealit.io, tyGraph, and Extranet User Manager.