There is a lot of buzz about Slack which is as sort of instant messaging system with good channel management and lots of integrations. I wanted to learn more and I found these excellent articles
- Slack for a dev team
- Slack or Yammer (a more conventional user forum manager)
It seems to me that Slack is a tool for adhoc team co-ordination and competes against IM, Skype and Google Hangouts, I am very process orientated and take the view that almost every adhoc communication to more than one person is an example of a process failure. Therefore the more you use Slack the less efficient you must be. If you have planned properly, delegated well and are executing effectively using standard work* you won’t have much need for adhoc communications. They will be taking place within managed systems such a FogBugz or a helpdesk product.
However I do strongly recommend the use of IM (I like Skype) to smooth the communications of developers, designers and support during incident processing. This is everything from “the server is down” to “let’s build a a new home page”. It can be seen that this is an enabler to standard work – not a substitute.
* Well designed, repeatable processes with well-defined quality standards in which team members have been trained.