As we enter our eighth month of working from home, many organisations are prioritising long-term remote work strategies. According to J.P. Morgan, 79% of CIOs agreed that the pandemic will force their organisations to digitally transform faster than planned.
Company-wide digital transformation – harnessing the power of digital technology to rethink every aspect of an organisation – is proving to be the ultimate path forwards for businesses supporting a distributed workforce. By bringing together the right people, at the right time, in the right place, with the right tools, Slack can support alignment and digital transformation across your entire business.
At this year’s Slack Frontiers, our annual conference that saw a record 18,800 registrations in 2020, we’re sharing new remote work research and initiatives, as well as new product innovations to help you transform the way that you work. Read on for a recap of what’s in store for Slack customers.
Building an open, connected culture for people at your organisation
Slack is a channel-based messaging platform that empowers organisations to build an open culture so that teams can engage and connect with people to get work done. With the sudden shift to remote work, companies across the globe are looking for insights and guidance on necessary organisational and cultural transformations in order to thrive in the new economy.
This year we launched the Future Forum, an industry consortium to help companies to reimagine work in the digital-first workplace. To better understand the challenges and opportunities facing remote workers today, we’re launching the Remote employee experience index, a new quarterly report providing the data and analysis that organisations need to navigate this new world of work.
The inaugural index shows that knowledge workers are generally more satisfied with working remotely than they were with working in an office.
But it comes with a warning sign: a weakening sense of belonging. Personal and professional bonds – so vital to the long-term health of organisations – are proving more difficult to build and maintain while working remotely.
Ultimately, organisations need to:
- Reimagine old office-based routines for a digital HQ
- Empower employees to have flexible work schedules
- Leverage digital channels that create social cohesion
Slack is committed to offering a platform that enables organisations to adapt and thrive in a distributed work environment. With our exciting new product innovations, Slack continues to help connect your employees, partners and systems to make your work simpler, more pleasant and more productive.
Collaborate securely with partners
Slack Connect extends channel-based messaging to everyone that you work with – inside and outside your organisation. It replaces email so you can securely work alongside people from other companies in the same place, without all the back-and-forth.
Since our launch of Slack Connect in June, we’ve seen more than 52,000 organisations enjoying the benefits of working in Slack with their external partners. And now we’re making it even easier and more secure to work with people across organisations.
Introducing Slack Connect direct messages
Customers have been asking to be able to connect between organisations with direct messages since we first made it possible for companies to come together in channels.
Today we are unveiling Slack Connect direct messages, enabling secure direct messaging across organisations for the first time. Share your private invite link with a trusted partner, customer or vendor that you work with, and they’ll be able to send you direct messages from their own Slack organisation.
Let’s say you’re at the early stage of a project with a vendor and haven’t set up a channel yet, but you need to start coordinating with one or two team members from that vendor. Now you’ll be able to quickly communicate with Slack Connect DMs. This is a revolutionary step in how people can work quickly and securely with trusted external collaborators. To learn more about Slack Connect DMs, visit our website to get started.
Release time frame for Slack Connect DMs: Early 2021
Securely connect to external organisations
We build everything with enterprise-grade security in mind, and that’s why we’ve made it easier to spot your trusted partners in Slack Connect. Verified organisations will soon be denoted with a new tick mark feature. So, whenever a member of a verified organisation sends or receives invitations to channels, you know you’re connecting to the right company.
Release time frame for verified organisations: Early 2021
In addition to verified organisations, our launch of managed connections will allow admins to pre-approve channel requests with trusted organisations. You’ll be able to securely create the different channels that you’ll need to work with verified customers or vendors without admin involvement every time.
Release time frame for managed connections: Early 2021
Speed up work with partners using your favourite tools in Slack
We’re continuing our dedicated partnerships with other organisations so you can streamline work with best-of-breed tools right in Slack. The new DocuSign eSignature for Slack app enables users to send envelopes, use templates and receive notifications from DocuSign, all from within Slack.
Now partners can securely trade documents for review and signature, including directly from where they’re working in Slack Connect.
Release date for DocuSign app: Available now
Connect systems and bring key information directly to your team
By bringing events – key notifications, information, actionable alerts – into Slack channels, your teams can collaborate and respond quickly to incidents. And with best-of-breed software integrations available, our platform can accelerate digital transformation at any organisation.
We’re also giving users more flexibility to build custom solutions – no technical experience required.
Integrate apps that you already use with Workflow Builder
You can now further customise and multiply the impact of Workflow Builder, a visual tool that allows any Slack user to automate routine processes. Workflow Builder steps from apps, available today, enable any Slack user to build workflows that integrate tools outside Slack such as Zapier, Datadog and Polly – no code involved.
For example, a support agent can mark an inbound ticket with a pre-determined emoji, triggering a workflow that automatically sends the details to real-time digital operations platform PagerDuty, creating a new incident for engineers to dive into.
Release date for Workflow Builder steps from apps: Available now
Build secure, interactive apps behind your organisation’s firewall
Security-conscious customers can now build customised apps with peace of mind, streamlining multiple tools and processes into a single Slack app.
With the launch of socket mode, developers can securely receive events and interactions from your users behind your organisation’s firewall through a WebSockets connection. This means that your internal developers can now use the full suite of functionality that comes with our APIs, including building rich interactive apps, without exposing public HTTP endpoints.
Release time frame for socket mode: Early 2021
Give instant access to essential tools in Slack
Integrating enterprise-wide productivity tools with Slack is one of the most meaningful actions that an admin can drive, because it helps an organisation to get more value from its existing software investments.
That’s why we’re introducing org-wide app deployment later this year, so admins can install apps across all workspaces in an organisation with a few clicks, making it easier to give every team member instant access to essential apps such as 1Password, BlueJeans, Box, Cisco Webex Meetings, Envoy, Microsoft OneDrive, Polly, Salesforce, Simple Poll, Workast, Workday and more.
Release time frame for org-wide app deployment: Early 2021
Enterprise-ready app certification
We’re introducing an annual, paid certification program for App Directory apps that want to distinguish themselves as enterprise-ready. Our new enterprise-ready app certification program will ensure that these apps meet the requirements of our largest customers across security, policy, support and user experience.
Release time frame for enterprise-ready app certification: Early 2021
어서 오십시오 (Welcome!)
We strive to make our customers’ time in Slack the best it can be by delivering an experience that works the way that they do, in a language they use. That’s why, starting today, we’re offering Slack in Korean.
Once your language is set to Korean in Slack, the entire product is localised, from the copy you see in the UI all the way down to the very last emoji. Korean is the seventh language that Slack is available in and we’re excited to offer it to Korean speakers, making Slack even more accessible to teams around the world. In the coming weeks, Korean-speaking customer experience representatives will be available to support Slack customers.
Release date for Korean localisation for Slack: Available now
Thanks for tuning in to this preview of good things to come. As always, if you have any questions, feel free to get in touch with us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We’ll be happy to help.
The above information is intended for INFORMATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY, and not as a binding commitment. Please do not rely on this information when making your purchasing decisions. The development, release and timing of any products, features or functionality remain at the sole discretion of Slack, and are subject to change.