What is Slack, and Why is it so Popular?

Slack logo background

Reliable and efficient communication is instrumental in achieving short-term and long-term objectives within complex organizations. Slack is one of the revolutionary applications to optimize communication beyond SMS and email by adding functionality and accessibility. The app has been primarily helping software companies for the past decade, but because it is so easy to use and beneficial, more sectors are adopting the technology. 

This post will delve into Slack, how it enriches company communication efforts, and why companies should utilize the innovative communication application. 

What is Slack?

Slack is an innovative messaging tool tailored to the internal communication needs of modern companies and organizations. The solution offers direct and group chat options and different add-ons and integrations that streamline internal processes and tasks. And, as a company, it's experienced incredible growth.

Understanding how Slack Works

As it applies to internal communications, Slack has two primary functions enabling end-users to communicate with one another on a 1-to-1 basis or as part of a group chat (aka channels). 

Users can create channels and invite colleagues to join. They can choose to make the group public within their workspace (where any person from the company can join) or private so that only select people can join.  

Direct messaging always occurs between two users. In the chat window, team members can send messages and read what others have sent. Some of the functionalities on the chat window are:

  • Text messages 
  • Attachments – from photo gallery, local files, and cloud storage apps
  • Photos and videos
  • Emojis
  • GIFs
  • Reminders
  • Customized notifications
  • Threaded conversations

Why Companies Love It

Before Slack came widely adopted by organizations, digital corporate communications relied entirely on email, a communication technology that was invented in the 1960s. While email is still a necessity in society and serves a purpose, the bulky inboxes, poor categorization, cc's and bcc's, and endless reply threads aren't practical when working in a complex work ecosystem.

Multiple business chat tools came into existence before Slack, but the app's clean interface and effective organization tools make the platform much easier to manage while working on multiple projects at once. 

To this day, the tool remains easy to use, responsive, and consistently adds new features to improve user experience and simplify communication. 

Slack is an ideal platform for tech unsavvy personnel due to its ease of use and guided customization. Another selling point is the capability of synchronizing apps that companies use for work daily. These include resources such as Google Calendar. The synch functionality also facilitates sharing of files and other vital information to save time.  

Advantages of Using Slack

The communication application has generated industry-wide adoption because it offers value to corporations. Here are a few key benefits:

  • Slack is accessible anywhere with an internet connection and a smartphone and is available to both IOS and Android users. 
  • All of Slack's material and chat history is easily discoverable through a central search box. For example, users can easily find important messages, links, and files even if they were sent days ago.
  • Slack has advanced file sharing capabilities enabled by easy-to-execute integrations, making everyday business collaboration faster.
  • It centralizes and coordinates all communications and improves the working experience through highly customizable integrations.
  • Slack Connect allows users to message people outside of their organization's channel.

Years of promoting effective communication and increasing productivity have helped Slack become one of the most sought-after messaging applications worldwide. 

Slack offers many features with its free version, but companies can optimize their Slack experience using paid packages. The company offers a standard plan for $6.67, a plus plan for $12.50, and a full-on enterprise grid plan with a price point depending on each company's specific needs. In addition, the Slack team offers discounts for companies in the nonprofit space. 

If your company struggles with internal communication, Slack is an incredibly intuitive tool that is free to try.