Slack Is Much More Than A Collaboration App

Are you looking for a great collaboration app? Read this article to learn how Slack can help you.

Productivity apps are some of the most popular apps you'll find today. As people load up to-do lists and Kanban boards, every app is geared towards helping you do more in the time you have. Some apps have hidden treasures for users, sitting below the surface of their main attractions.
Slack is known as a collaborative app that helps remote teams connect, but it's a lot more than that. You can do so much with Slack! From collaborative document editing to screen sharing and even polling, there are a lot of unique ways you can make Slack work harder for you, even as a free tool.

Slack Versus Similar Apps

There are a lot of similarities and differences between Slack and some of the other popular collaboration apps, but Slack works a little harder. You won't need a lot of different communication, scheduling, to-do, and productivity apps when you're using Slack. Everything can be taken care of in one place, with everyone on board.

Most collaboration platforms have dynamic messaging capabilities. It's the little things that make these apps so different. Sometimes small features like automatic "do not disturb" mode or advanced searching options are just enough to differentiate one from the other. Slack is chock full of these little hidden features that make it useful for more than just keeping in touch with your team.

What Can You Do with Slack?

It's probably easier to answer the opposite question, what CAN'T you do with Slack? With a little effort, you can set up Slack to do a lot of basic functions for you. It's easy, intuitive, and highly customizable to your work preferences.

1. Create Keyword Notifications

Want to know when your team members are talking about something in particular? Set up notifications for particular keywords. Every time your keywords show up in any chat on any channel you have access to, you'll get a notification. This way, you'll be able to sort through the noise in a busy channel to get wind of what's relevant to you more quickly.

2. One-Touch Messages

By connecting Slack to apps like IFTTT on your smartphone, you'll be able to set up a one-touch message to quickly alert teams or individuals of something specific. This could be telling someone you're planning to meet that you'll be late, getting someone's attention, or acknowledging receipt of something. It's useful when you want to send a specific message quickly without stopping what you're doing.

A good example of when this is useful is when you're driving to a meeting and can't use your phone (be safe!), or when you're busy with a task and you want to send an acknowledgement without breaking your concentration.

3. Automatic Do Not Disturb

Need a break from work? Set up an automatic schedule for do not disturb mode on Slack. You won't get notifications, alerts, or reminders until do not disturb is deactivated. You can set it up to activate at specific times, such as overnight, when you're not planning to be working.

4. Screen Sharing

Get your point across more quickly by showing instead of telling. Hop on a quick screen sharing call with an individual or a group to demonstrate something without having to record or try to explain.

5. In-Line Document Editing

When you want to make small changes to a document or message, you can do it directly in Slack. Anyone on the message board where the document or other item is posted can edit it directly in the messages without having to move to another app and break their workflow.

6. Polling

Officially, polling isn't a feature on Slack. But, unofficially, you can use emoji responses to make it happen extremely easily. Simply put up a few multiple-choice options that you want a simple vote on, assign an emoji to each one, and instruct the people you're communicating with the use that emoji reaction for their vote. It's smooth, simple, and very useful for quick opinion polling.
If you want more options, you can also integrate polling apps like Polly into Slack and upgrade your poll abilities.

7. Productivity Reminders

You can set up custom reminders for yourself, but also for other people. Push reminders to others in your boards by typing "/remind @exampleperson" and it will automatically allow you to send a custom text reminder to any person at any time. Reminders can be sent to individuals or to existing groups, using the same format.

Go one step further by connecting your Google calendar to Slack (and having your team do the same) and pushing reminders straight to the calendar. This way, even if you and your team aren't on Slack at a given time, the reminders will still go through from the calendar app itself.

8. Share Everything More Easily

Slackbot is one of the shining stars of the application. You can use Slackbot as a cloud storage for work-related documents, emails, and literally anything else. With just a few clicks, anything in the Slackbot chat storage can be shared with anyone on your team. Or, you can keep it within easy access just for yourself. Everything there is searchable, so you won't get lost in the madness.

9. Make RSS Feeds

Content management teams and digital marketing teams will find this especially useful, but it's something a lot of teams can benefit from. Automatically subscribe to feeds from any source. You'll get new post notifications and links to the new content automatically listed in your Slack RSS feed. Any member of your team or group with access to the feed can view it. With a few extra steps, you can also automatically share relevant content saved to Pocket, Tweets, or blog posts from your WordPress sites.

10. Integrate & Conquer

Slack is great on its own, but it's better when you use it together with other apps and services. Slack can be integrated directly into many different apps, including:

  • G-suite Apps (Calendar, OneDrive, Gmail, Outlook, Google Drive…)
  • Dropbox
  • Salesforce
  • Zapier
  • Todoist
  • Wunderlist (For as long as it remains active…)
  • Zoom
  • Qualtrics
  • Bridge
  • Guru
  • Workday
  • Polly
  • Later
  • GitHub
  • Giphy
  • Zendesk
  • American Red Cross
  • Asana

  • There are so many more, but you get the idea. Integrations are one of the strong points for Slack. As a well-established, long-standing app, Slack has built so many valuable partnerships that make it possible for you to do basically anything, not just communicating with your team.

    Slack may not be the right fit for every team, but it does offer more under the surface than you'd expect. It's not just a team collaboration tool. If you know what you're doing, you can use it to supplement or replace a lot of productivity, scheduling, and work apps. Try it out for yourself.

    Article by Tony John
    Tony John is a professional blogger from India, who started his first Weblog in 1998 at Tony switched to blogging as a passion blended business in the year 2000 and currently operates several popular web properties including,, and many more.

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