If you’re still using email to send messages to your coworkers, it’s probably time to catch up with the modern workplace.
Slack is a tool used by over 500,000 companies for exchanging ideas and collaborating on projects across teams. It works well within an office and also when working with remote teams. It is easy to get used to and includes a lot of great functions which can help you maximize productivity for your business. You can use the basic tools in Slack for free, without needing to enter a credit card. (By the way, we are not affiliates of Slack, we just appreciate good tools.)
INTEGRATING SLACK WITH OTHER OFFICE TOOLS
Slack integrates with lots of other tools that you may already be using in your workplace. For example, in our office we’re constantly sharing Google documents and spreadsheets with each other. Connect Slack with Google Drive and you can copy/paste your links into Slack. Your colleagues can easily access your documents and even choose to receive alerts through Slack about changes made in shared documents.
One of our favorite Slack features is its integration with the workflow app, If This Then That (IFTTT). In our office, we have created workflows to send our social media posts to Slack. If we get a mention, a retweet, or if someone talks about our projects on social media, all of the information goes to one channel in Slack. This is a channel that we have dedicated just for this purpose so that its all consolidated and easily searchable for our whole team.
Slack also adds a bit of fun and humor to the workplace by providing a brightly colored and easily customizable user interface as well as providing hundreds of emojis. Sending a taco emoji to someone or creating your own GIFs is easy and helps you to establish a fun rapport while getting your business done.
Slack’s overall interface is beautiful and takes only minutes to get used to. Even for those of us who have been using email for years, the transition from internal emails to Slack is quick and painless.
SWITCHING FROM INTERNAL EMAILS TO SLACK
Slack is also a great way to share ideas and brainstorm. For example, if a team member designs an image for social media, they can share it with the rest of the team and get feedback directly on Slack. Unlike traditional instant messengers, Slack does a much better job at keeping comments on topics within the discussion organized. Team members can see all the related comments about a topic without getting mixed up with other messages within the same channel.
Using Slack also allows you to give shout-outs to specific members of your team. You might not need feedback from all team members for every document or image. Specifying certain team members notifies only those people. You can also send private messages to individuals at any time.
Slack is easy to set up and doesn’t really require an SOP, but you may benefit from the list of suggested channels in the SOP to set up once your Slack team is created. We have also included some links to Slack keyboard shortcuts and reference guides.
To sum it up, Slack is like a big chat room between all of your team members in which you can create separate channels for different projects and have discussions in a more organized way than an email thread. This cuts down on time wasted sifting through information that isn’t relevant to everyone.
Download and follow the free SOP template provided to get your Slack team started ASAP.