How we use Slack at Thirsty Concepts
Slack is somewhat of a strange beast. It seemed like the company popped up out of nowhere and onto every company’s desktop and mobile device overnight.
For those that aren’t familiar, Slack is a communication tool for employees to talk to each other. Along with having different channels (chat room) for teams, Slack is a central hub that gives teams a place to easily share files, pictures, code snippets, and more. This way, you don’t have to deal with the clutter and annoyance of using different platforms like email, Dropbox, Google Docs, etc. There is a reason why huge multi-million dollar companies like Buzzfeed, HBO, the New York Times, and even NASA have switched over to Slack for in-office communications.
Here at Thirsty Concepts, we use Slack on a daily basis and it is the core of our operation. We have a general channel where we can share ideas, talk to one another about the projects we are working on, and occasionally rag on each other’s soccer teams. Or we can chat one on one if we didn’t want our conversation to be public.
To give a better understanding of how we use Slack, here are some of the reasons why we think it is a game-changer for businesses.
Our Creative Director, Carlos Oliva, said that his favorite part about Slack is how easy it is to search through our archives. If you are looking for a link about a certain client that was shared in the past, all you have to do is type in “has: links [keyword]” and you’ll get a list of links that were posted (public or private) that contains that keyword. This way, you don’t have to waste your time scrolling endlessly through old conversations just to find one simple link. Along with links, you can search for files, other keywords, and more. If it was shared in Slack, it is searchable. With the paid account, you will get unlimited archiving so you can search as far back as your conversations can go.
Also, we were using Hipchat for more than ten years before we switched to Slack. When we switched over, Slack made it very easy to import our previous conversations and attachments to make it searchable within their application so we didn’t have to go back to Hipchat to find something.
We know that we can’t live without email. It is basically how the world communicates with each other but ever since we started using Slack, we have been using our Thirsty email less and less internally. One of the reasons is because we can share virtually every file in Slack. Along with that, it will give you a quick preview of the file so you don’t have to open it if you are just skimming through the conversation. So Carlos can send a few Photoshop files of a mock logo and everyone else can preview them in Slack without opening each single file in Photoshop like you would with email attachments.
Chief Technology Officer, Josh Young, pointed out that CRM integration is his favorite part about Slack. With integrations, he can customize it to work the way he wants it to work. For example, he has a web hook set up so when someone fills out form on our website, the information will be sent directly to one of our channels for easy viewing. Another is integrating Asana so he can create projects and assign tasks by executing a command in one of the Slack channels without having to switch over to the Asana app.
Slack was originally used as an internal communication tool for a defunct video game company. After they shuttered the gaming company, founder Stuart Butterfield shifted his attention over to Slack because he knew they were on to something and knew companies could utilize it. As of June, they’ve announced that they have more 1.1 million daily active users with 300,000+ of them are paying users.
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