When I first learned that Automattic ran a remote team on Wordpress, I thought that it was a crazy strange example of dogfooding. Of course, eventually I realized that was foolish– a CMS is a great tool, not unlike Basecamp or any other intranet, and could easily be used as an internal company knowledge base, project planning tool, and more.
Today Automattic has made P2 free. My understanding is that P2 is a heavily custom theme (maybe even whole instance?) of Wordpress that is used to run all of their internal systems. Seems like a great idea, although I’m surprised it took them this long to make it available.
I think Slack, and chat in general, is a dead end for collaboration. As excited as I was for tools to advance beyond IRC and have good work chat with mainstream acceptance, I’ve come to realize overtime that Slack has gotten more wrong than right. At work, we’ve started to mix in Basecamp over the last year as we implemented Shape Up for our product development strategy. It’s pretty ok– the best thing about Basecamp is that it is reliable and inexpensive. But using Basecamp has really piqued my interest in non-chat, asynchronous-first ways of working on remote teams.
P2 just exposes one more way to do this kind of work, tried and tested by a very large company for over a decade. I hope we’ll see many more tools like this.