Meta Meltdown: What Can We Learn from the Workplace Closure?

Temps de lecture : 5 mn
Emmanuelle Abensur
Emmanuelle Abensur
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Temps de lecture : 5 minutes

Meta recently announced a surprising decision: its withdrawal of Workplace, the enterprise social network it had launched in 2016. Used by millions of professionals to facilitate communication and collaboration within their teams, the entire platform will be phased out entirely within two years. The platform will be available in its full version until August 2025, when it will become read-only. It will then be completely phased out in June 2026.

So why has Meta, one of the world’s largest technology companies and the parent name for Facebook, chosen to abandon such a promising platform? What lessons can companies learn from this decision? And what alternatives are available to Workplace users? We answer all these questions and more in this article about the Workplace closure!

Reasons for Meta’s decision to discontinue Workplace

Stagnant growth

In 2021, Workplace counted some 7 million paying users. That figure seems to have flatlined three years later. This stagnation can be attributed to a number of factors, including competition from other work platforms such as Slack, Microsoft Teams, and Talkspirit. These competitors have succeeded in capturing a significant share of the market for communication and collaboration tools—particularly with Workplace’s target group of key accounts. For its part, Microsoft Teams holds over a third of the market, while Slack claims to have 62% of CAC 40 companies as customers. This made it difficult for Workplace to continue to grow as it did in the early days.

Strong competition and stagnating user numbers probably played an important role in Meta’s decision to withdraw from Workplace. For a company this size, projects must either grow rapidly, or be abandoned in favor of more promising initiatives. The closure of Workplace thus enables Meta to concentrate its resources on more strategic projects.

Prioritizing AI and metaverse projects

Thanks to this reallocation of resources, Meta intends to invest more in two areas with high growth and innovation potential: artificial intelligence (AI) and the metaverse. Since 2021, the company has invested a staggering $46 billion in development of the metaverse. In 2024, the American giant plans to invest between $35 and $40 billion—mainly in artificial intelligence projects. This financial commitment underlines the strategic importance of these technologies for the company. 

Lessons to draw from this announcement

Remember: enterprise social networking was just one of many side projects for Meta

The closure of Workplace highlights an important fact: the enterprise social network is not at the heart of Meta’s activity and business model. For this American giant, Workplace is a drop in the bucket. So it’s not worth continuing to maintain this platform.

Conversely, a company whose core business is enterprise social networking would not have made such a decision unless their business was collapsing. The advantage of opting for a specialized developer is that there’s little chance of them suddenly deciding to shut down their software, as is the case with Meta.

Specialized tech companies attach greater importance to customer relations and innovation

SaaS companies like Talkspirit focus not only on customer satisfaction, but also on continuous product innovation. Their first and foremost mission is to meet the specific needs of enterprise social network users. This approach means they listen to feedback and constantly improve the user experience.

Philippe Pinault, founder of Talkspirit, illustrates this philosophy well: What sets Talkspirit apart is the trust our customers place in us, and the moral duty that goes with that. Stopping a product isn’t the problem, it’s how you do it that counts. Furthermore, the size of these industry giants raises another concern of trust, when we consider the disruption these same players cause in shutting down a service as essential as a communications platform with tens of thousands of users. The lack of consideration shown in this case calls for such reflection.”

Talkspirit as an alternative to Workplace from Meta

With the closure of Workplace, many organizations need to find a new platform for internal communication and collaboration. Talkspirit presents itself as a solid alternative, offering the same functionality as Workplace (and much more!) on an ergonomic, easy-to-use platform.

Popular features

Talkspirit offers all the essential features that Workplace users know and love:

  • Newsfeed: share important information and updates with the whole organization
  • Welcome portal: offer all employees a single point of entry to better access all company information and resources
  • Groups: create dedicated spaces for teams, projects, and shared interests
  • Chat: communicate live at any time with your colleagues via instant messaging
  • Events: schedule meetings and internal events, with invitations and reminders
  • Directory and organizational chart: easy access to your employees’ contact details and the entire structure of your organization
  • Audio and video conferencing: organize online meetings with integrated audio and video conferencing tools
Comparison of Talkspirit and Workplace from Meta newsfeed side by side

Now, if you’re looking for a solution to map your organization and align your people, we’ve got another tool that might interest you: Holaspirit! Holaspirit is a self-management platform that improves the transparency of company data, as well as your teams’ agility and autonomy. How does Holaspirit work? Click here to find out more.

An approach focused on the customer and the user experience

At Talkspirit, we offer much more than robust functionality. We set ourselves apart through our unique customer-centric approach to UX. For us, communication and collaboration are more than just products: they’re our core business. 

We firmly believe in the importance of building a relationship of trust with our customers, so that they become true partners. This trust translates into personalized support, rapid response, and a genuine desire to solve each customer’s specific problems. Our commitment to innovation also drives us to regularly integrate new functionalities based on the needs and suggestions of our users.

Both our customers as well as leading software comparison platforms are picking up on these differences. In 2024, Talkspirit was named Category Leader by GetApp (from Gartner) in five categories: intranet, internal communication, collaboration, digital workplace, and team communication.

PS: we’ve compiled a short comparison guide below, listing all the similarities and differences between Talkspirit and Workplace. Don’t hesitate to contact our team to find out more. 😉

Why GIE Afer prefers Talkspirit to Workplace

Several of our customers formerly on Workplace have already jumped over to Talkspirit. This is particularly true of GIE Afer (a French association specializing in retirement savings and life insurance). Here’s their testimonial.

In 2018, in the midst of a digital transformation, GIE Afer decided to implement a new internal communications solution. Initially, Madleen Trouvé, Internal Communications Manager, had considered using Workplace from Meta. However, IT security constraints imposed by their IT partner Aviva forced GIE Afer to seek another solution.

While exploring the alternatives, Madleen discovered Talkspirit. What won her over? The ergonomics and ability to customize the platform, but also our responsiveness and commitment to integrating customer needs into our roadmap. Madleen also appreciated Talkspirit’s ease of use, both for users and platform administrators.

Madleen Trouvé quote on why she preferred Talkspirit to Workplace by Meta before the Workplace closure

Want to read more testimonials like the one from GIE Afer? Visit our case studies page.

A final word

With the closure of Workplace from Meta, 7 million users need to find an alternative to meet their daily internal communication needs. Talkspirit is the ideal solution, offering full functionality via an ergonomic, customizable interface, with simple technical integration and responsive support from our dedicated team.

Our commitment to listening to our customers’ needs and incorporating their suggestions into our product roadmap makes Talkspirit a partner you can trust. When you choose Talkspirit, you benefit from a constantly evolving platform, perfectly adapted to your specific needs.

Want to find out more about our platform? Click here to schedule a demo: 👇

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