Introduction to Slack for Collaborating with Remote Workers

Slack is an application any organization can utilize to create group chats and channels with various topics, with integration with custom-built apps and messages from bots. From its inception, Slack has recorded more than 12 million active users, and day by day, more businesses are taking to its use. Slack proves to be one of the best messaging apps an organization can ever use, and this post intends to equip you with the necessary information you require on how and when to use slack for business. As they say, change is the only constant thing and that is what Slack brings to the table.

A team’s Slack will comprise of several channels for group discussion on topics the team so desires. Rather than send short emails, Slack comes in to save the day. You can use your Slack to chat up absolutely anything. It clamps down on the tension between team members as you are able to dialogue on a platform with a relaxed atmosphere.

To better understand the way Slack was welcome amongst many, James Donkin, general manager of Ocado Technology had this to say. “It’ll take time to foster a collaborative attitude in your team, by building trust between team members and managers, giving staff autonomy to make meaningful decisions and encouraging cross-team working, but people are starting to realize, instead of an email that ‘That guy must be in Slack, I can message him’. That’s a huge success for me”. With Slack, you get to be versatile and your team becomes more organized. You have short tips all around the application so that you do not feel stuck in knowing what an icon or page stands for.

All in all, Slack is a platform you don’t want to miss its many benefits. So, here it goes.

How to Use Slack for Business

1. Sign up

Sign up on Slacks’ website. Anyone who signs up becomes the team’s administrator with general administrative controls. Usually, you will intend to change a few things such as the ‘messaging restriction’ and ‘channel and private group management’. The message restriction sets who is allowed to send ‘@ channel’ notifications and which team members can alert others when they send a message while the channel and private group management prevents other users from creating several channels.

Even emojis on Slack can be restricted to the admin, especially if you would prefer to have a somewhat formal conversation between team members. As soon as you are done setting as desired, invite your team members individually or at once (through the admin page). To get the most out of Slack, download the desktop app so as to get notifications about new messages and that way, you don’t have to open your browser every time a message is sent.

2. Slack commands

@channel: A channel in Slack is a chat room for discussions on topics. When you need to send a notification to team members, you simply type @channel followed by your message. It is the most useful to getting everyone’s attention and may become your best use.

@username: To send a message to a specified team member, you type @username, that is, @James if James is the username of the person you intend to alert.

: This is used to notify people that are online at the set time; Works just like @channel.

DM:This is used for a direct or private message between you and one other team member.

3. Private Channel

A private channel works like a public channel, but it is by invitation only. It can be used by team leaders of sub-teams for discussions intended to be kept away from other team members.

This adds a ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ to your message.

/open: Opens a new channel.

/leave: Used when a member is dropping out of a channel.

/collapse: This hides all images and GIFs in a channel.

4. People and User Groups

The team directory located at the top right of the menu lists each team member with their job titles and contact details.

5. Slack notifications

By using the commands above, you can set individual notification preferences. To do this,

1. Open the channel you want to change and click the name at the top of the screen, then

2. Click “channel notification preferences.”

You can then set mobile and desktop notifications or turn off @channel notifications the same way.

6. Search for people and messages

You can search for a contact in the search box. As soon as you start typing, Slack suggests things and people you might like to search for.

7. Use Slack like a Pro

To further enjoy Slack and use it like a pro, you can customise more features. Here’s how

  1. Click the menu at the top left,
  2. Select preferences, then ‘advanced’, change the setting to “hide any channels, DMs or groups with no unread activity.”

This allows you get only notifications in need of your attention.

Next, you can enable the ‘quick channel switcher’ which helps to get hidden channels. To activate this, use CTRL+K (CMD+K on a Mac) to bring it up, then type the first few characters of the channel or person you want to get to press enter key.

8. Editing your Slack messages

If you made a mistake in your message, you can edit it. To do this, select your message, click the cog, then ‘edit’ or press the ‘up’ key on your keyboard to edit the last sent message.

9. Set reminders

To set reminders on Slack, simply type /remind me to eat in 45 minutes in the Slack Bot, suppose you are on a diet, and need to eat at specific times. Slack will send you a private reminder.

10. Slackbot responses

Slack bot responds to common questions with the right answer.

11. Pinning messages

You can pin important messages and/documents in a channel so it shows in the information menu. To do this, hover around the message and click on the three dots icon for “more actions” and select “Pin to Channel”. The message stays there until it’s removed so don’t forget to unpin.

12. Change the theme

You can set a preferred theme to the usual purple one. In the preferences menu, select theme.


Slack is useful anytime, anyday and its features are awesome. You can use it with various services such as Google calendar, IFTTT, Mailchimp and more.

If you desire a better regulated team working relationship, then don’t even try ignoring Slack, it’s a bunch of sweet treats to message communication, packed in a free app.

Do you know some other ways to enjoy Slack? Get it rolling in the comment section below.

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