Posted on 11/07/2016 by Kanika Bhalla
The 3rd biggest merger in American tech history has been made with LinkedIn & Microsoft joining hands… but what does it mean for the everyday end user?
The LinkedIn platform has become an integral digital networking and marketing tool for companies and talent. From posting product launches, company communication, job posting, blogging and providing industry commentary. In alignment with LI’s inception plans, or even more...will this change?
Jeff Weiner, LinkedIn’s CEO confirms that the LinkedIn users know that the value is only getting better. “This deal will allow us to keep growing, investing in and innovating on LinkedIn to drive value for our members and our customers,” says Weiner.
However this is ultimately an acquisition of two companies; with one company having a terrible record with acquisitions (Microsoft’s Skype and Nokia mergers).
Over the past 3-4 years LI’s pressure to drive revenue has disgruntled users. Long standing early adapters of the platform who have experienced once free functions turn convert to paid services. Hopefully this deal will enable LinkedIn some breathing space and see it focus on their user experience and generate new innovations…an envision that Jeff Weiner is wanting to make a reality.
Ups for Users
- Everyday tool integration – Enabling Outlook, Office 365, SharePoint and LinkedIn to simplify their communication and coordination.
- Increasing the Capabilities of Functionalities - Additional surge of funds will hopefully enable the company to improve some of their existing products such as the newsfeed (to rival Facebook’s smart newsfeed tech),
- Sharing tech and innovations - Dynamics CRM (Microsoft’s Online CRM) utilising the LinkedIn’s CRM Online
- Combining their graph projects – By combining Microsoft current graph product that tracks the relationships between people, calendars, projects, leads, prospects and other elements and LinkedIn’s project that is working towards an economic graph that enables the cataloguing of members’ experience and skills, which then cross references the jobs available with the skills requirements.
Downs for Users
- Integration - Stickiness of product promotion through data mining of LinkedIn and heavily pushing of Microsoft.
- Risk of Independence - Even though the acquisition has laid initial foundations to ensure that LinkedIn’s company brand, culture and independence will remain at the end of the day this is an acquisition of a smaller company with a bigger company. It could sink the company even with its best planned intentions.
Just like both companies’ users, I am sure that Jeff Wiener and Satya Nadella wish they had a crystal ball to see what the immediate 12 months and longer term will mean for both companies.
However, even if the best intentions of keeping LinkedIn independent, one would have to wonder if this will earnest intention will remain. LinkedIn has been trusted by users with mass amounts of data and we hope that it can truly retains its member come first promise.
Will it be #Microsoft&LinkedIn4eva or #RIPLinkedIn?
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