Are people using Slack to replace workplace email wholesale?
Yes, for a lot of three-person teams, a lot of 10-persons teams, and a lot of 100-person teams. It’s all or nothing. If half of your team was not on it, then the whole team would stop using it pretty soon.
We’ve been using Slack since February this year (yes, really). Initially, I thought it was just another app in the crowded messaging space. Nonetheless, I was impressed by its UI so I gave it a shot. I asked my team to sign up and try it out. Our usage eventually dwindled because we are using Skype as our primary communication tool. Slack as a communication platform just cannot compete with Skype.
This goes on for a while until I discovered Slack’s true power: third-party integrations. Because of our recently-implemented code review process, I wanted to be notified whenever a developer commits a code. Incidentally, this is right up Slack’s alley. Slack has an impressive roster of third-party integration, including Bitbucket. For every repo that I want to be notified, I simply create a hook and pair it with a Slack channel. Viola! Instant commit reminder. Here’s another cool usage scenario that we recently adapted: we wanted to be notified whenever a file is dropped in a certain OneDrive folder. This is part of our internal backup process. Using a third-party app called Zapier, we were able to bridge Slack with OneDrive, which is pretty sweet.
Overall, Slack didn’t kill email in our office. At least not yet. In spite of that, we’re a happy camper. We are now obsessing on how we can integrate it further with our internal processes.