When Flickr first came out, it was exciting. Actually, to say it was exciting downplays the sheer thrill teens got from hosting entire photo albums online. It happened sometime after MySpace, but before Facebook perfected album sharing, so its innovative design filled a hole in many a teen’s heart.

In the years since, Flickr has become more of a professional tool, though it no doubt still hosts photos of Justin Bieber and Selena Gomez. Now, professionals are using it to create portfolios and the businesses that hired them are using it to bolster company culture, create slideshows and organize photos for presentations.

Creating culture

Businesses have began using Flickr for more than just PR—they’re promoting company culture from within and connecting remote employees to the rest of the team by providing a visual record of events. Rackspace Hosting is a great example of this. They document everything from company dodgeball events to Seaworld’s Jack O’Lantern dropping by the office to begin Racktoberfest. The Rackers (Rackspace employees) are entirely dedicated to company culture, and they’re not afraid to let it show.

Part of their dedication comes from the way the company is designed around offering exceptional customer support. “Fanatical support” isn’t just a company slogan. It’s not a buzzword that’s tossed around the office as employees try to reassure management that their customers are happy. It’s a sacred pact that Rackers make with each other to do the best they can to make each and every customers thrilled that they chose to work with their company. So, where does Flickr fit into that? Easy. Flickr is just another way for Rackspace to connect with the general public, and keep the good vibes going around the office.

Slides to share

Flickr has moved beyond just photo sharing, though. As technology has updated, they’ve added to their purpose. You can actually use Flickr as a replacement to the standard Powerpoint slides. People who like to use templates probably appreciate the Microsoft application and its many different designs, widgets and animations. However, those looking for a little more freedom on file types, design and content can benefit from Flickr’s hands-off approach. Meeting notes can be designed exactly how you want them to be, with no annoying templates to fight with.

Organization on the go

Flickr is also renowned for its ability to organize photos. With geotagging, photos are organized based on your exact location. Did you attend a convention in Chicago, followed by a trip to a regional office and then a vacation in Spain? Show off all your photos without having to dump your memory card and spend days organizing your journey. It’s especially helpful for showing off what you saw at the convention at a moment’s notice in a work meeting without worrying about pictures of the kids getting mixed in.

Do more with less

Small businesses thrive on the principle of getting more done with fewer resources. They’re the masters of squeezing that last drop out of the ketchup bottle and the last penny from their budgets. It’s fair to say that utilizing a completely free tool like Flickr to make business more polished, more culture-friendly and more organized is a step toward opening up some free space in the budget that can be put toward better uses, like buying more ketchup.

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