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Are your employees Slacking? An online communications tool in the workplace

Posted by Scott Fiore on January 29, 2018

If your employees work in teams or collaborate on projects, they might be using Slack, a cloud-based communications tool that facilitates planning, scheduling and chatting with co-workers.

With an estimated 9 million weekly users, Slack is one of the most widely used applications for communication and collaboration at enterprises and startups today, particularly popular with workers 40 and under. Slack is even beginning to replace email among co-workers in some companies because it organizes and stores communications within a group (“channel”) of colleagues, so no one is left out of the loop.

“We use Slack for quick and easy internal communications,” says Lauren Hunter, staffing manager at TriStarr. “It gives us the opportunity to touch base in a quick and efficient manner and helps build our internal community between departments.”

The benefits of online communities for planning and collaborating

A Slack public channel—a virtual workspace—is open to all team members who have been invited to join for collaboration and discussion. Private channels, used for smaller groups of members, help them break up projects into smaller tasks and communicate confidentially as needed.

“At our company, we value transparency, so we use Slack channels with broad membership for work-related chat to help keep conversations from being siloed,” says a 38-year-old product development professional whose organization has employees in offices across the country.

Employees at thousands of companies now use Slack, with many employers promoting participation in these communities for work-focused conversation and collaboration between employees. Software and web developers and designers are among the most frequent users of Slack.

Slack should be used to unite—not divide—employees

Employers should make clear to team members that Slack’s private channels should not be used to keep out employees who, by nature of their work responsibilities, should be part of the group.

After all, the tool is intended to spark collaboration and inclusion, so it shouldn’t be used to exclude certain employees from participating in the discussion.

Employees should keep in mind that their privacy on Slack has limits. Slack’s head of PR, Julia Blystone, says, “It is important to remember that it is still business software, and anything you communicate on a workplace device using a workplace network may ultimately belong to your employer.” In fact, companies may request access from Slack to archived messages and conversations, even ones on private channels.

Our job placement agency can assist you with all your staffing needs

At TriStarr, an HR consulting firm and employment agency in Lancaster, PA, we can advise you on all your HR-related needs, from hiring to terminating employees and all the related processes in between. Our recruiters can help you find candidates, as well as screen, interview and assess them. Whether you have full-time positions to fill or need temporary administrative staffing or professional staffing services, the experienced, professional staff of our employment agency can save you time and effort.

We back our recruiting with our Good People Guarantee. If a client isn’t pleased with a professional we have recruited, we will replace the person with another candidate at no cost or provide a refund.

Our skills, a result of more than 60 combined years of recruiting and temp staffing experience, typically lead us to candidates who are a great fit for our clients.

Contact us online, or give us a call at (717) 560-2111.