The recent announcement that Microsoft is acquiring the popular business social network, LinkedIn, will mean potential big changes in the way we use Office 365 in the future, says Peter Gradwell, CTO of Gradwell Communications Ltd.

The purchase of LinkedIn has been the talk of the town in the business world because it’s possible to predict the major implications it will have for the way we work. For the giant that is Microsoft to invest $26.2 billion in buying the LinkedIn network, we know that this is going to lead to serious adaptations in the software we rely on at the office.

“Let’s look at LinkedIn data. It’s a professional network that has information about your work history, achievements, published posts and the business contacts you have. Now look at the cloud work environment of office tools like Excel, Word, Outlook, Messenger, Skype, Powerpoint and more. For business use – the integration could mean an intuitive predictive function that feeds suggested data from LinkedIn members to your official documents, presentations, analysis and so on.”

Microsoft Chief Executive Satya Nadella described the vision simply as ‘the coming together of the professional cloud and the professional network’.

“Cortana, the Microsoft digital assistant could use the data from LinkedIn for informing about professionals,” speculated Mr Gradwell. “It means that cloud has the potential to become intelligent about people who are sharing via Office 365. It could lead to an empowered new kind of cloud based office – there will be an added layer of social intelligence.”

Meetings and invitations could instantly have the groundwork in place to know who is who in a business context.

How this integration will exactly come to fruition still remains to be seen, but the LinkedIn deal should be complete by the end of the calendar year.


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