SLACK – Virtual Team Communications

Chris MiltonBusinessLeave a Comment

Ideal Team Size: All company sizes
Pricing: FREE for up to 10,000 messages/month
Website: www.slack.com

When you have a virtual team, like we do at Tangle Creative, good team communications is critical for collaboration and successful project management. We have been using Slack for about 6 months now, and it has quickly become our new favourite tool for communicating. Their desktop and Smartphone app are intuitive yet simple, user-friendly and extremely effective. It operates as an instant messaging platform that organizes everything into its right place. You can “drag-and-drop” files into your chat window, host a virtual meeting, search conversations, instant message team members, and trust me, a whole lot more.

Communicating in Real Time: We use Slack for quick communications, especially when we could benefit from a quick response. It’s also a great tool to use to chat about non-work related things and have some fun with your team, (including custom emojis! J) They have a solid privacy policy that makes us a lot more comfortable sharing sensitive information than on some competing platforms. Lastly, because they are a Vancouver-based company, we wanted to give them a try, but we soon found out why they are the best at what they do. We’re looking forward to seeing how they grow over the next few years.

Channels: Slack channels allow us to organize our team conversations in open channels. Make a channel for a project, a topic, a team, or anything—everyone has a transparent view of all that’s going on. For sensitive information, we can create private channels and invite a few team members. No one else can see or join the channels and allows us to communicate freely. Through Direct Messages, we can reach a colleague directly by sending them a private and secure Direct Message. It’s got all the same features of other chat platforms that you know and love but creates a virtual hub to put all your communications in one place. You can also search chat history and star important messages. It has a user-friendly interface and you barely need any training to start communicating and collaborating with your team.

Drag, Drop, and Share your files: Not just messages, but all files, images, PDFs, documents, and spreadsheets can be dropped right into Slack and shared with anyone. Users can add comments, star for later reference, and it’s all completely searchable. If you use any services like Google Drive or Dropbox, just paste the link and that document is immediately in sync and searchable too.

All your tools in one place: Connect all the tools you use to Slack and avoid all that constant switching between apps. Set up your integration so that you get all your notifications directly within Slack—from support requests, code check-ins, and error logs to sales leads—all of them searchable in one central archive.

Search your entire archive: Everything in Slack—messages, notifications, files, and all—is automatically indexed and archived so that you can have it at your fingertips whenever you want. Slack also indexes the content of every file so you can search within PDFs, Word documents, Google docs, and more. With one search box and a set of powerful search operators, you can slice and dice your way to that one message in your communication haystack.

Everywhere you go: With fully native apps for iOS and Android, whatever you do on one device is reflected everywhere. Everything is in sync. We’ll keep your place so you can always pick up wherever you left off. Push Notifications straight to my Smartphone make sure that I don’t miss a beat no matter where I am and allows me to respond in real time if need be. You can @mention people (similar to Twitter) to call things to their attention in a private message or on one of the “channels”, but most importantly, it eliminates so many unnecessary emails.

At Tangle Creative, we love allowing our staff to work remotely, we communicate everyday, and are able to communicate in real-time without always being together in a physical space. While we’ve used other communication and collaboration tools in the past, we are confident that Slack will be our go-to communication app for a while.

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