About Slack's features

Ready to get to know Slack like the back of your hand? We’ve broken down some key features for you in this handy guide.

Effective communication

Communication is the backbone of any good project and collaboration. Slack supports how people work, making collaboration easy and efficient — just like working face-to-face. A workspace is a shared hub made up of channels, the spaces where members work together.


Your workspace is comprised of channels: a single place for messaging, tools, and files. Channels bring all the right people and information together.

  • Channels can be based on anything — teams, projects, or even office locations — and you can create as many as you need.
  • Shared channels connect separate organizations together, allowing you to work with external partners and contractors without leaving Slack. See how our customers are using shared channels.

Tip: Message threads allow you to respond directly to a message, keeping the replies organized neatly in a single, threaded conversation.

Direct messages

Direct messages (DMs) and group direct messages (group DMs) are best for ad-hoc conversations that don't require an entire channel to weigh in. DMs can be useful in a number of ways:

  • A substitute for an in-person, 1-1 conversation
  • An easy way to catch up with a teammate
  • A quick and simple way to ask questions

💡 Learn more about DMs and Group DMs.


Notifications are Slack’s way of telling you about items that need your attention. You can choose to receive notifications on your desktop, your mobile device, or by email. Slack notifications can even be customized by channel, so you can prioritize where your attention goes.


Mentions and user groups are an easy way to notify team members and get the right eyes on important information. Include an @mention or user group in your messages to notify the right people to keep the right people updated.

Access to your tools and services

Apps and integrations are the tools that will enable you to build your existing workflows in Slack. Bring important information and alerts into the right channels by connecting services like Zendesk, Salesforce, Jira, or even your own proprietary software. With these tools connected to channels, you can add meaningful context to discussions and complete simple tasks in Slack.

💡 Discover tools and services in our App Directory, and learn more about apps.

Robust company knowledge

Search is your way to narrow down and find what you need, fast. Search your messages and files or find anything that’s been posted in a public channel, even if you're not a member of it or if it’s been archived. Learn the context of past decisions or see if someone’s already solved the problem at hand.

You’ll find the search field in the upper-right corner of Slack: simply type a word or phrase to start looking. You can even use a number of modifiers to help narrow your results.

💡 Learn how to search for messages and files.

Secure working environment

At Slack, we're serious about security. That's why we offer a number of ways to secure your data.

  • For an added layer of security, turn on two-factor authentication (2FA) for your account. If your password is compromised or stolen, you'll have peace of mind knowing that only you can sign in.
  • Slack also supports SAML-based SSO which allows you to securely access to Slack through an identity provider (IDP) of your choice.