Jon Russell was Asia Editor for The Next Web from 2011 to 2014. Originally from the UK, he lives in Bangkok, Thailand. You can find him on T Jon Russell was Asia Editor for The Next Web from 2011 to 2014. Originally from the UK, he lives in Bangkok, Thailand. You can find him on Twitter, Angel List, LinkedIn.
Yammer is bringing training solutions to companies and individuals that use the enterprise-focused social network after agreeing to a deal with online training specialist Mindflash.
The partnership is a first for both services and the newly released Mindflash app allow companies to create, distribute and track courses through the site, using the training specialist’s own platform.
The deal is Mindflash’s first third-party deployment and it’s one that CEO Donna Wells believes will enhance the Yammer user experience, and heighten visibility of the company’s online training platform.
“It is a full-on, deep integration that goes well beyond single sign-on,” the former Mint.com CMO tells me. “Our app fully leverages Yammer’s powerful feature set to make it more effective and efficient for businesses of any size to create, share and manage training.”
The integration gives existing Mindflash members full access while new sign-ups can register for Mindflash’s initial 30-day trial period direct from Yammer. That’s something that is sure to boost the training specialist’s user numbers.
The two companies are well acquainted since Yammer has been using Mindflash “for years”, Wells says. The company began using the training platform in 2011 to help explain the site to new Yammer users and allow them to get the most out of it. Equally, in what is the most fitting tribute, Yammer HR leans on Mindflash to support its own internal training needs.
Wells believes that the match is well suited as the two companies have “great overlap and great synergy”, and her view is echoed by Yammer Vice President of Business Development An Le.
“Both Yammer and Mindflash are passionate about improving employee collaboration, knowledge sharing and learning. This integration is a natural extension of our platform,” Le said. “By integrating the Mindflash application with Yammer, it is easier than ever for companies to help employees succeed.”
Starting now, individuals from organisations will be able to download the ‘Mindflash.com application’, from where they will have access to the complete range of free and paid-for premium training schedules from the Mindflash Marketplace.
Mindflash is focused on making things easy for end users who, Wells says, do not require specialist training platform materials, or even a grasp of IT. Instead, Mindflash pulls together presentations and training materials schemes using content from regular programs and multimedia such as PowerPoint, YouTube and other places were work and content is regularly stored.
Wells tells me that, if the integration goes as well as is expected, then the company is open to pursuing other integrations, although Yammer is clearly a partnership that makes a lot of sense. While business-focused services like Branch Out have ventured on to Facebook with some success, Mindflash’s company-focus makes that fit a little loose compared the now Microsoft-owned platform.
Elsewhere, Mindflash is continuing its focus on tablet support, which Wells stresses the importance of, as tablet devices become increasingly popular tools both in the workplace and for remote-working teams.
“Customers can take courses on Android-powered tablets and we are developing an iPad app that is coming in the fourth quarter,” she explains.
Mindflash’s focus is “user driven”, Wells says, so it speaks volumes that there is no support for the Playbook, despite the fact that RIM was once a supremely dominant force in the enterprise space.
Last month Yammer began the phased roll out of Facebook-style real-time chat and the company says that the feature is one of a number of new additions that are coming soon to all users.
Image via Flickr / The Official CTBTO Photostream
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