Email vs Slack: Is It Time To Switch Away From Email?
Email vs Slack seems to one of the latest debates when it comes to the introduction of new and innovative technology into the business realm. Whether it be through automated marketing strategies, new partnerships or ventures, socially responsible practices. Getting on board and up to speed with the latest communication technology will ensure that your company remains competitive and focused.
When the introduction of new technology or software enters the market, it is there either to enhance another’s functionality in some way or another, or as a replacement of its predecessor. Slack has been launched, not a replacement to email, but as an additional means of inter-office communication. Let us get into Slack and what it is all about.
What is Slack?
Slack was designed as a tool to be utilised for internal communication between employees working on an internal project or task. It gives users the ability to store and search their entire internal correspondent’s information, received exclusively from company personnel, in one centralised location. While email performs the same basic function as Slack, Slack is a platform exclusively reserved for company personnel. This means that your Slack inbox only contains communications from fellow employees, nurturing an environment that promotes employees to operate with greater focus, not affording employees to be distracted by non-work related emails from Facebook or some automated marketing email.
Slack operates on a similar platform to that of WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger in that it stores conversation in threads, making it far easier to access specific information. Slack’s chatroom-style interface has allowed for easy third-party integration, allowing developers, for example, to instantly share code snippets with each other. The third-party integration that Slack uses allows users to paste links directly through Slack. Dropbox, for example, will be accessible through a link pasted into Slack, and the information retrieved without having to open Dropbox itself. Although email shares a similar functionality with Call to Actions (CTA) buttons and hyperlinks, it is unable to access the information you are looking for without accessing the website.
An advantage that Slack holds in document storage is that everything is centralised, meaning that messages aren’t fragmented throughout different email folders, again making accessing of only relevant information that much quicker. Slack hosts a function that allows new employees to access past information in its historical archives, that is relevant throughout the company, and specific to an internal project. Traditional email would require a new employee to stare blankly at an empty inbox while someone emails them the information that they need.
So What about Email?
The traditional digital document management system has been the basis of internal business communication since its inception still has its place, although its functionalities may be missing the communications evolution. External communication is of vital importance to companies as a priority source of information and information gathering, via email. Slack shares email functionality that allows you to share files with a large audience, or specific team members, but is limited to strictly internal communications. Creating email folders can be a somewhat painstaking and frustrating process. Having to set up filters through trial and error processes is time-consuming. Slack is a little more user-friendly, and because it has not been designed to replace email, messages received are not distracting because everyone received is relevant all the time.
When it comes to increasing efficiency and employee focus within the workplace, the fewer distractions, the better. Sorting through mounds of external communication, not related to company happenings, is a guaranteed distraction to employees, and a time waster. Slack’s exclusively internal communication network allows employees to exercise greater focus when working on a task, while at the same time, its third-party integration is a fantastic time-saving tool that will grow as it does. Slack’s unique integration across various document management and storage systems makes for a quicker gathering of information, without having to go on a mini scavenger hunt through various websites and folders.
Overall Slack seems to be ahead in the email vs. Slack debate, with strong features that make it easy to use, with a familiar-feeling user interface, multiple sharing capabilities, and let’s not forget the tons of time-saving applications, as well as increased employee focus. Slack seems to have all the internal communication bases covered. Not designed to replace email, rather introduced to enhance the swiftness and savvy of office internal communications.