Who’s been slacking?

Have you heard about Slack yet?

Slack is a fun, clever tool for team collaboration.  The benefits of effective collaboration are well known… it fosters innovation, helps productivity and keeps everyone pulling in the same direction. Of course it’s not easy to get right… That’s why we love Slack.

Slack stands out for 2 reasons… It’s synchronised and it has the ability to surprise you.

Slack is synchronised

The synchronisation allows you to communicate easily with team members, wherever you or they are. Everything from the web, desktop app and mobile app syncs together, fast.  This means you can start a conversation on your office desktop and carry on from the train (or from the loo if you really can’t resist!). If you’re not online (heaven forbid!) it will send you an email and/or mobile notification so you don’t miss anything. But you can also choose the messages you’d like to receive notifications for (e.g. only work related).

Slack is fun

Now and again, Slack surprises you with a curve ball.  For example Tom found himself in desperate need of an espresso.  Slack pops up with a message:

I think it’s about time Fiona made one, can’t remember the last time she made a round

At the heart of Slack is Slackbot! Slackbot is a virtual user which can be tweaked and tailored to your business’s sense of humour. You can add keywords to Slackbot’s library, which when entered during a conversation triggers Slackbot to pop-up with a comment. We added a keyword ‘drink’ so whenever anyone sends a message containing the words ‘drink’, Slackbot pops up with it’s own comment.  Fiona has bit of a reputation around the office for being slack (see what I did there) when it comes to making drinks.

Slack helps productivity and keeps things organised

The entire team communicates through channels, designated by project, topic or anything you decide. We’ve created a channel for each business function to keep ourselves organised.  We have channels for Marketing, Operations and Technical Development so it’s easy to find relevant information and limit conversations to the appropriate people. The entire team has access to the main channels in Slack but private channels can be created, so that users can be granted access, individually. You can even have public rooms with customers and invite potential clients to chat with you, at the same time keeping irrelevant information private. We find it useful for sharing articles and resources. Then if we want to find them again in the future, Slack makes it easy to search entire archives and you can pin information you’d like to save instead of routing through e-mails – it makes things a lot more efficient.

Slack is growing rapidly. It’s free for unlimited users and you can chose to upgrade to a paid plan and access more features. The free version is great for small businesses and provides a way to really experience Slack without financial commitment. We also love that it integrates with other software such as Google Drive, Twitter and Dropbox.

Slack integrates with other cool tech

Making communication fun is a key to Slack’s success because it really entices you to use it. One of our favourite plugins is the Giphy extension (You may have seen these mini animations on other apps) and Slack allows you to include such animations in messages. For example rather than just responding to someone’s question with a boring response, why not respond with a giphy (animated gif) which will put a smile on their face?

In summary, Boson love slack.  It’s a useful tool, but more importantly it’s also a good example of how software can surprise and delight you – and in doing so, actually make you want to use it. Why not try Slack? Try Slack here.