Five best practices for streamlining communication via Slack

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Mastering Slack: Best Practices and our tips for Streamlined Communication

In an industry where communication across large teams is paramount, mastering tools like Slack can be a game-changer. Slack is the Swiss Army knife of the modern workplace, and yet it’s not always so easy to cut through the noise. We’ve picked up a few tips and tricks over the years at Brightec. Click here to read how we set up Slack to enhance our organisation.

Here are our five Slack best practices to bring harmony to the Slack notification bell.


Top Five Slack Best Practices

1. If you need someone, tag them

In the vast world of shared Slack channels, it's easy to lose track. So if you need someone's input, don't be shy - mention them in your message. A simple tag or mention ensures your message gets the attention it deserves - from the right people. You should also be specific about what you need and when you need it; this helps colleagues to digest your message, and you’ll be much more likely to get the response you’re after.

2. Use @here and @channel sparingly

We get it, sometimes you need to rally the troops, but do so with caution. Blasting an @here or @channel in a crowded channel is not so different to standing up and shouting across a bustling office. Not always what you want to do! Only use these tags when it's absolutely necessary; your colleagues will thank you.

3. One Message to Rule Them All

Don't inundate your Slack channels with multiple messages one after the other. Summarise your thoughts into a single, coherent message. Trust me; your coworkers will appreciate the quieter notification jungle you've just created. Sending one message instead of five in a 30 person channel? You just saved 120 notifications!

4. Hash it out in a thread

Threads are your best friend when it comes to tidying up Slack channels. Follow the ‘One Message’ rule when posting to the main channel, and then have your in-depth discussions in the message thread. Those who want to join the discussion can do so in the thread. Those who don’t need to get involved just see the ‘headline’ in the main channel and can ignore the rest!

5. Respond with an Emoji

Received a message, and there's nothing more to add? A simple 👍 or 👀 as a Slack reaction can go a long way. It acknowledges the message without adding to the notification counter. It’s also a great way to show that you’ve seen a message but aren’t available to respond yet.

🙏 At Brightec, we’ve gone one step further and have defined a list of emojis for specific use cases:

  • ➕ :heavy_plus_sign: - “Add my vote to this”

  • 👍 :thumbsup: - “I agree”

  • 🙌 :raised_hands: - “Thank you”

  • 👀 :eyes: - “I will take a look” / “Investigating”

  • ✅ :white_check_mark: - “Complete”

  • 🏗️ :building_construction: - “Working on it” / “Editing”

  • 🔖 :bookmark: - “I've seen this and will look later, when I can”

Five Tips and Tricks to make Slack work for you

We’ve delved into our 5 best practices to make Slack a happier experience for everyone, but what about customising Slack to work for you?

Here are 5 tips & tricks to get the most out of your Slack workspace.

1. Search anything with global search

Slack's global search feature is a treasure trove of knowledge. Can't remember where you saw that crucial nugget of information? Just type in some keywords, and you’ll find what you’re looking for in no time. It's your very own Slack detective mode.

2. Tame your notifications

Slack is your tool; make it work for you. Mute channels to reduce noise, configure notification schedules to match your workflow, and get alerted only when someone calls you out with an @. Customise Slack notifications to your heart's content.

3. Unread messages made easy

The 'Unreads' tab is a hidden gem. It rounds up all your unread messages from various channels and DMs into one neat little package. No more frantic searching for where you left off; it's all right there. Convenience at its finest! 🕐

4. Control your 'Enter' key

If you're prone to overly-hasty replies, don't worry; Slack has your back. Change your 'Enter' key behaviour in your preferences. You can configure it to create a new line instead of sending the message. No more ‘oops’ moments or channel spamming!

5. Set your status

You don’t always need to broadcast your whereabouts to the entire office in a Slack message - just update your Slack status. Going on a quick errand? Update your status with a message and emoji, and even specify how long you'll be away so that colleagues know when you’ll be back online. It's the digital equivalent of a “back in 10” post-it on the door. 🚶

By following these best practices, you can take your Slack game to the next level, reduce notification fatigue across your team and get ever-closer to a state of digital tranquillity. And remember, Slack is just a tool; it's you who wields the power. Happy Slacking!

Click here to learn more about how we use Slack to streamline our communication at Brightec.

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