Launching our first Slack App!

Managing team leave can be a mess of spreadsheets, email chains and general headaches. We’re launching LeeveBot today to solve that problem!

😒 THE PROBLEM

In November 2014 Ryan and I started No Divide and over the past 3 years we’ve tried various ways on managing staff leave, so we set out to find a tool to help us.

Our wish list was as follows:

  • Avoid the use of spreadsheets.
  • Work for remote teams.
  • Considered design.
  • Integrate with Slack.
  • Be easy to setup.
  • Under £20 a month, ideally.

As expected, there were products that fulfilled some of these, but never all. We were left with a choice, either use a product we were not entirely happy with or build our own.


🔨 BUILDING OUR OWN PRODUCT

Building your own product to manage staff leave is no simple task, and we quickly realised what we were taking on as we started planning and outlining our technical specification. We had to work out a sensible strategy that allowed us to get to market relatively quickly.

We decided to start development with a focus on our core API. We knew that having a strong and well tested API as a foundation would give us the flexibility to go in any number of directions for example a web interface, native mobile app and obviously a Slack integration. It would also pave the way for us to open our API up to the community in the future.


💘 DECIDING ON SLACK

We then decided that the first step (other than deciding on a name — side note naming your product is a royal pain in the ass) would be to launch as a Slack app.

We use Slack every day and love it, by building around what can be done with Slack allowed us to stay focussed on simplicity and core functionality, people are also already familiar with Slack and therefore launching on the app store there would bring in an element of peace of mind knowing our app has gone through the approval system.


👀 WHAT CAN IT DO?

LeeveBot takes just 5 minutes setup. LeeveBot will make managing your team leave easier than ever before. Assign leave approvers and using simple commands perform tasks such as:

  • Keep track of your remaining leave entitlement.
  • Requesting leave for approval.
  • Manage leave requests.
  • Review past leave requests.

As an approver you can also:

  • Keep track of leave entitlement for the entire team.
  • Approve or deny leave requests from team members.
  • Manage team members leave requests.
  • Request leave on behalf of another team member.
  • LeeveBot sends notifications when someone is on leave and helpfully works out what day they’ll be back at work, taking into account their working days and any public holidays (all configurable by you).

For full details about the commands available in LeeveBot visit our help page: https://leeveapp.com/help


🎉 PUBLIC BETA

As of today we are now open to the public for full testing of LeeveBot. We fully expect a few niggles here and there and hopefully lots of suggestions to go into our development roadmap.

You can send us feedback through LeeveBot. Simply use the command:

/leevebot feedback [message]

We would absolutely love it if you’d consider trying out LeeveBot for managing your team leave. Note that you’ll need to be a team owner or to be able to set-up Leeve for your team.

Once we’re out of beta you’ll have a grace period before needing to switch to a paid plan if you want to carry on using LeeveBot. Don’t worry, we’re aiming to keep the price point well below £20 per month (that was in our wish list, afterall).

👉 Visit leeveapp.com to get started!


💛 On ProductHunt? We’re also live on there today: https://www.producthunt.com/posts/leevebot

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