Slack turns ten!

Celebrating a decade of innovation and ten essential Slack features

By the team at Slack14th February 2024

Can you believe it’s already been ten years of Slack magic? That was fast!

As we’ve all embraced new ways of working, Slack has also evolved (a lot!) from our origins. What began as a simple messaging tool has transformed into a powerful AI-driven platform, bridging teammates and tools to make work more pleasant for everyone. And we feel like we’re just getting started!

Launching into our next decade, we wanted to put a spotlight on the ten most groundbreaking features that we’ve rolled out over the past ten years. From our early days as a glimmer in the gaming world to becoming the command centre for countless workplaces, each feature represents a chapter in our journey. *Cue the nostalgia*


  1. Channels: Where teams come together

    Opening your inbox to hundreds of unread emails is enough to send anyone into a spiral. Slack was built on the premise that channel-based communication would be a game-changer for getting work done – and it has been! From project discussions to water-cooler chats, channels keep the conversation organised and ensure that no message gets lost in the digital abyss.

  2. Threads: Dive deeper without drowning in details

    Clutter is productivity’s kryptonite. That’s why we introduced threads, allowing you to keep conversations organised and get into the nitty-gritty details without spamming the main channel. It’s like having a focused sidebar conversation without losing sight of the bigger picture. Looking back, we can’t really imagine Slack without threads.

  3. Emoji reactions: Express yourself without words

    Sometimes a clapping hands emoji says it all. We wanted Slack to enable true, transparent connections as we show more of our authentic selves at work. By being the first to introduce emoji and reactions, we not only made it easy to communicate things such as ‘I see this’ ( eyes emoji ) or ‘I agree’ (thumbs up emoji), we cultivated a culture of human connection between colleagues. Reactions allow you to share more of your personality, be more expressive and, dare we say, have more fun!

    These are the ten most used emoji reactions by Slack employees.

  4. App integrations: All your work, all in one place

    These are the ten most used apps in the Slack directory.

    We know that Slack isn’t the only tool you use during your working day – but toggling between them can get hectic! From Asana to Zapier, and over 2,600 apps in between, teams can integrate their best-of-breed tools into their workspaces, bringing all their work into the place where it’s already happening: in Slack. More than a million developers have built apps on the Slack platform, and we’re grateful to all our incredible partners who make the Slack App Directory as robust as it is.

    ‘On average, people switch between nine apps per day, which fragments communication and reduces efficiency. By integrating into our customers’ existing tech stacks, we bring that essential information into one central place: Slack.’

    Neel PatelProduct Marketing Manager, Asana
  5. Slack Connect: Break down walls, connect with colleagues

    Channel-based communication was the game-changer that brought value to internal teams, but collaboration isn’t always so confined. We went a step further and made Slack accessible to those outside your organisation. Slack Connect takes the benefits of channels beyond team borders by securely connecting you with external partners, clients or anyone that you want to work with, all within the familiar Slack environment. Today, 77% of the Fortune 100 use Slack Connect.

    Michael Westra, a corporate account executive at Snowflake, says that Slack Connect has helped him to increase his deal size threefold, year on year:

    ‘Having an external Slack channel with our prospects and customers really helps us stand out and communicate that our customers are our number one priority.’

  6. Huddles: Because typing can only say so much

    We’ve all been there: you’re in the middle of a project, and you need to chat with a colleague, but your thoughts are better expressed live – and that’s where huddles come in. Whether it’s a quick catch-up, a brainstorming session or holding ‘office hours’ in a channel, a huddle bridges the gap between typing and talking. Fun fact: huddles were adopted quicker than any other feature that Slack has launched in the past decade.

  7. Statuses: Let your team know if you’re in the zone

    Stepping out for an appointment? Heads down on a project? On holiday somewhere where you won’t be (shouldn’t be!) checking Slack? No matter what activity you’re busy with, statuses keep your team in the loop, simply and effectively communicating your availability without saying a single word… Because calendar invitations and OOO email auto-replies just don’t always cut it.

  8. Canvas: Centralise the need-to-know info

    Keeping essential information organised for the teams who need it – that’s the value of Slack. Introducing canvases in Slack gave teams new surfaces to create, share and collaborate on information of any kind, and even embed workflows. Plus, as with everything in Slack, canvases are searchable, so they can become part of your organisation’s collective knowledge base. Since we launched the feature, nearly 18 million canvases have been created!

  9. Workflow Builder: Automate the mundane, elevate the extraordinary

    Why waste time on repetitive processes when Workflow Builder can do it for you? Workflow Builder gives our users automation superpowers. Being able to drag and drop pre-made actions into a customised workflow to streamline all your team processes leaves you with more time for the work that truly matters. Since we released Workflow Builder, our users have created more than 1.3 billion workflows in Slack.

    ‘Employees outside of IT know their own problems and can leverage the capabilities of Slack to build their own workflows. It’s not just IT bringing a tool, but a platform that other people can build upon for their own departmental needs.’

    Russell LeaderDirector of Planning and Engineering, Verizon


  10. Slack AI: Launching productivity to new heights

    AI is everywhere! So it should come as no surprise that starting today, we’re officially rolling out Slack AI, an intuitive generative AI experience embedded in Slack. To harness the full potential of all the collective knowledge and organisational data in Slack, we’re giving users more powerful ways to search, distil knowledge and spark ideas. This includes features such as AI-driven search, channel recaps and thread summaries. Picture Slack AI as your trusty sidekick, ready to assist you wherever and whenever you need.

    We’ve got more features, focused on channel summarisation and AI-powered integrations, on the horizon. The future of Slack is AI – and this is just the start.

    Thank you for joining us on this journey. Slack wouldn’t be what it is without you, and as we prepare for liftoff into our next stage, we’d like to express our gratitude. Sharing this experience with all of you is the greatest birthday gift of all. We can’t wait for another ten years of doing what we do best: making work simpler, more pleasant and more productive. party popper emoji

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