Microsoft announced today that Yammer, an enterprise-focused social networking service included in Microsoft 365, will be acquired by Viva Engage. The latter is a development of Microsoft Teams’ Yammer Communities app, which was launched in July 2022.
Microsoft paid $1.2 billion for Yammer in 2012, and the business eventually integrated it with Office 365, then into Microsoft Teams. With the debut of Viva Engage last summer, it didn’t make sense for Microsoft to operate two separate social networks for enterprise users.
“In an increasingly distributed world of work, community engagement is essential to how people and teams come together and is a critical pillar of the employee experience, which is why last year we introduced Microsoft Viva Engage, an evolution of the Yammer Communities app in Microsoft Teams, as the newest part of Microsoft Viva. We’ve listened to your comments on this first stage, and in the coming year, all of Yammer will transition to Viva Engage, thereby retiring the Yammer name,” stated Seth Patton, General Manager, Microsoft 365.
Viva Engage drew heavily on consumer social networks for inspiration, even mimicking the popular Story format popularised by Snapchat and Instagram. The app is available in Microsoft Teams, along with other Microsoft Viva modules.
Yammer will be phased down beginning next month, when the Yammer mobile apps for iOS and Android are rebranded as Viva engage. In addition to this new standalone mobile experience, Viva Engage will continue to be available through the Teams mobile app.
Microsoft will also rename the existing Communities app for Outlook on the desktop and online to Viva Engage in March. The name change will take effect automatically, and the new Viva Engage app in Outlook will continue to offer access to conversations and community updates.
“All of Yammer will be renamed into Viva Engage over the next year,” Microsoft stated in a FAQ. “This has no effect on Yammer’s current capabilities, value, or pricing for existing Microsoft 365 customers or M365 SKUs.”
Finally, Microsoft has made certain new Viva Engage capabilities broadly available as of today. Leaders will be able to communicate with employees through articles, campaigns, and events such as Ask Me Anything (AMA) sessions via the Leadership Corner tab. Viva Engage is also launching Advanced Analytics, which will provide detailed statistics about platform engagement.