Microsoft is retiring the Yammer brand and moving its apps and features to Microsoft Viva Engage, which is part of its employee-experience platform for a hybrid work world. It's also rolling out new premium Viva features.
The Viva employee experience suite, which runs on top of Teams, includes Viva Engage, Viva Learn, Viva Topics, Viva Connections, and Viva Goals. Viva Connections was also based on Yammer, which continued to run as Yammer apps alongside the Viva apps.
Now, Microsoft will retire the Yammer brand and fold all of it into Viva Engage in a move designed to reduce confusion about overlapping functionalities.
"We've heard your feedback on this initial step and in the coming year, all of Yammer will become Viva Engage, retiring the Yammer brand. In addition, we'll continue to enhance Viva Engage with new capabilities that spur leadership engagement, authentic expression, events, and knowledge discovery, including new experiences rolling out today," Seth Patton, general manager of Microsoft 365 said in an announcement.
In a separate blogpost, Microsoft clarifies that users have given feedback that "having two apps surfacing similar experiences and the same services and content has introduced confusion and made it challenging to drive adoption and create clarity for end users."
Microsoft acquired Yammer for $1.2 billion in 2012, ran it under the Office division, and pushed the enterprise social network alongside its cloud services, including Office 365, SharePoint, Dynamics, and Skype.
In March, Microsoft will update the Communities app for Outlook and Yammer mobile apps for iOS and Android under the Viva Engage brand.
Further elements of the rebrand will occur through 2023. In April, Yammer.com will display a banner notifying users of the Viva Engage rebrand coming up in summer 2023. Then later in the year, Microsoft will update all Yammer.com URLs and roll out redirects.
The new features include: Storyline Announcements for leaders; Leadership Corner for employees; Ask Me Anything Events; Social Media #Campaigns; Advanced Analytics; and Answers in Viva. There's also a new admin center. Microsoft has a detailed breakdown of each module's capabilities in a separate blogpost.
Microsoft launched Viva as an employee experience platform in 2021 in response to hybrid work amid the pandemic. It was its entry into tools for employee onboarding, worker education, and knowledge discovery. Overall, Viva is intended to help organizations onboard employees, connect employees with each other, and connect employees with company resources. It caters to employees working on site, remotely, or in hybrid work roles.