slack chatroom cellphone
Courtesy of Slack


Changing how workers communicate

Anybody who has ever worked in an office knows that email overload can be a crushing experience. That’s part of why 70,000 organizations are customers of Slack, a supercharged workplace communication app for desktop computers and smartphones. At its most basic level, it works a lot like text messaging. But Slack has added a host of useful productivity-minded features that have make it the rare workplace software that employees actually seem to enjoy using—the service’s name has even been turned into a verb, as in, “I’ll Slack you about that later.” Slack conversations are typically divided into channels based on team or topic, letting members of a production team work towards a quickly-arriving deadline while another group organizes a colleague’s surprise birthday party without blowing their cover. Messages are easily searchable going back months, eliminating the need to ask co-workers the same question dozens of times. And then there’s Slackbot, a customizable tool that workers can use to set reminders, record notes and more. Slack says it now has over 8 million daily users, and it’s constantly adding more features, third-party app integrations and clients. That means if you aren’t already Slacking, you may be soon. —Patrick Lucas Austin

Correction Oct. 4

The original version of this story misstated the number of Slack users. Slack has 70,000 organizations paying to use it and is used by 500,000 organizations overall.

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