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This real estate company launched an internal platform to replace email

The new platform uses enterprise social network Yammer and helps connect 400 staffers who are located 13 different states.

A screenshot of Madison Apartment Group's new internal social network.
Updated 10/23/12 10:30 a.m. to add more detail on how many staffers have used the network.

Forget internal email.

That’s what management said at Center City-based real estate company Madison Apartment Group. When they heard that staffers were getting flooded with emails from other staff and consequently missing out on important ones, they decided to launch an internal social network that could eventually replace email, a spokeswoman said.

The new platform uses enterprise social network Yammer and helps connect 400 staffers who are located 13 different states. Since its launch one month ago, 90 percent of Madison Apartment Group staffers have used the platform, a spokeswoman said. The company does not yet have numbers on email volume to track an increase or decrease, she said.

It might sound ironic — an internal social network — but it shows the evolution of web-based communication platforms. CRMs and other proprietary organization tools have had private tools for staff conversation for years, but there’s something to the idea that a sprawling company that wants to make more targeted conversations would take lessons from where the open web has gone.

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