What is Yammer and how should you use it

When I mention Yammer some people have no idea what it is, apart from something that sounds like a conversation between two Black Country folk (For non UK readers, black country is an area in the West Midlands).

With regards to CRM 2011 it’s basically a well polished and properly done version of activity feeds and as Microsoft purchased Yammer for $1.2 billion I fully expect Yammer to be integrated with CRM in a future release.

If you are really keen Yammer already has a CRM app but unfortunately it does cost, you can read more about that here

https://yammer.zendesk.com/entries/21284143-yammer-for-microsoft-dynamics

hopefully in the future Microsoft will bundle this into CRM, which will hopefully nullify another of Salesforces functionality benefits over CRM 2011.

So those of you who are wondering what Yammer is, here is a amended version of an email I sent around work.

What is Yammer – Quick Answer

The quick answer is Yammer is social networking for your company, a bit like a Facebook and twitter for a company.   Only company domain users can access the company Yammer site.

Yammer is designed for private communication for members of an organisation/company

What is the purpose/point of Yammer

The purpose of Yammer is to enable and improve efficiency regarding company communication, collaboration, file sharing, knowledge sharing and team efficiency.

The goal of using Yammer

  • One of the goals for of using Yammer is to reduce the amount of internal emails and meeting,
  • Information, articles, documents can be shared to groups of people e.g The company, sales, Developers etc
  • Another push from saving information on individuals computers/shared folders where this information cannot be easily found by other people.
  • Improved visibility of Metaphorix employees to employees
  • Collaboration

How should I use it/ First steps

  • Go to the Yammer website – https://www.yammer.com (bookmark it), you can download a desktop app as well.
  • Look at the news feeds (like something if its good)
  • Join some groups which interest you
  • Follow relevant people
  • Post information to a yammer group
  • The more people user Yammer the more useful it will be
  • Configure email notifications to ensure you don’t get loads

What would be good

  • Sales people to post quick posts on demo’s/engagements
  • Consultants to post a quick post
  • Developers/everyone to share interesting articles to the relevant groups
  • For people to use it

Point of interest

Microsoft purchased Yammer for $1.2 billion and will integrate it with CRM in a future release.

For a more detailed and well written explanation of Yammer read the benefits as described by Yammer themselves – https://www.yammer.com/solutions/

If you are wanting more below is a good article describing what the heck Yammer is

http://www.pcworld.com/article/260517/what_is_heck_is_yammer.html

Windows 8 and Yammer

Software updates can be sometimes be easy and sometimes cause howling of frustration

People have started to updated to windows 8, which seems a lot a faster than the previously version of windows but does take a little bit of time to get used to (there’s no start button!).  The first impressions of Windows 8 is it looks fantastic and new interface is easy to use.  The one puzzling aspect is it does act like a tablet screen which means you can only have one application on screen at one time, this is great for tablets but not always ideal for desktops.

The developer who upgraded his windows 7 desktop had a very simple job taking under 2 hours to upgrade but the person who had to update their MAC had quite a task on their hand, which even involved visiting an Apple shop to get some help from someone known as Obi-Wan.  Obi-Wan used the force and we now have Windows 8 successfully running on a Mac.

I haven’t taken the plunge myself yet because I (in my wisdom) setup my laptop to use windows server 2008 so I could have hyper v on my laptop.  The downside is I would have to have a totally new install to have Windows 8.  I am at the moment working up the ethusiams for the task, it might be a new year thing.

One gotcha with Windows 8 and installing .NET 3.5, the full details are below in the Microsoft kb article

Error codes when you try to install the .NET Framework 3.5 in Windows 8 or in Windows Server 2012

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2734782

Yammer

The company I work for (Metaphorix) have decided to use Yammer.  I think this is a good idea because hopefully in a future release of CRM yammer will be fully integrated.

My first impression is Yammer seems to be a bit like an internal company twitter feed where you can create groups (twitter lists maybe or hashtag) which enables users to subscribe to groups (sales, developers, CRM, NAV, Support, etc etc) and share/receive information for certain groups.

The main driver for wanting to use Yammer is reduce the amount of internal emails being sent because  this is not an efficient method of sharing information.  Also users who receive a lot of emails can basically lose information because their inbox is receive too many emails for them to read and respond to all of them.

Like most new pieces of software the trick is understanding how to use it to fit in your companies working ecosystem and processes, not to mention it can be difficult to change peoples working habits.