Free Friday: Messaging Made Easy

Imagine a world with fewer emails flying into your inbox each day — Slack can help with that! Slack is a free (with premium options) instant messaging tool that does so much more.

Slack breaks team messaging into Channels, that can be public or private, and direct messages for one-on-one communication. Each Channel can be focused on a single topic or project. Once that project or topic is no longer relevant, the Channel can be archived. But don’t worry, you still have the ability to search your entire archive using the built-in search functionality which indexes all public messages and files.

Slack interface

Within your messages, you have the ability to blend other tools such as Google Drive, Trello, Jira, and many more. Add in the ability to drag-drop files for sharing and you’re set. And for those who need a little fun during the work day, there are plenty of add-ons like Giphy:

Gif of Giphy

One caveat for the free version of Slack is the limitations put on the number of apps you can integrate and the number of messages that it archives. You can integrate 10 apps in the free version. And it will only archive up to 10,000 of your team’s most recent messages. You are also limited to only 5GB of document storage. It’s not all bad news though!

Slack provides mobile and desktop apps for both Windows and Apple products, so you can be connected to your team 24/7 if you want. If you prefer a nice work/life balance, there are Do Not Disturb options that can be set for specific times for yourself or your entire team.

If you’re not quite convinced that you need Slack in your life or don’t have colleagues willing to take the plunge, you can try out some fun library-related channels focused on user experience in libraries or that old library favorite, LibGuides.

Sarah Arnold, Director, TNT RoundTable

Come back next Friday, August 12th for our next installment of Free Fridays!

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