Service Provider Cloud

Slack Makes Big Enterprise Push

Cloud collaboration provider Slack on Tuesday introduced a new version of its popular team communications service, with tools tailored for the big enterprise.

Slack Enterprise Grid looks the same to end-users as the company's regular cloud service, but it provides added centralized management features. It provides controls for data security, with a single point of control for administrators, and integrates with other enterprise collaboration applications, according to a post announcing the service on the Slack company blog.

Users can set up unlimited workspaces for departments, teams, locations and groups. "For individual users, these workspaces offer much of the same day-to-day Slack experience that millions have come to know and love, including conversation channels, threaded messaging, voice and video calling, and support for platform integrations," the company says. Administrators can control permissions and configure integrations on a per-workspace basis. Teams can collaborate between workspaces when needed.

And the new service provides integration with tools for e-discovery, data loss prevention and offsite backup, along with US Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINFRA) and Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) certifications, Slack says.

Want to know more about the cloud? Visit Light Reading Enterprise Cloud.

The service integrates with products from companies including Salesforce, IBM, Box, Adobe, Google G Suite and SAP.

Slack has a cult following among workers who see it as a replacement for email and clumsy enterprise instant-messaging systems. It's taken off among tech organizations in Silicon Valley and elsewhere, and then spread into the enterprise. Until now, it's been designed to be installed and managed by non-technical users; Enterprise Grid is a bid to woo IT managers and get them on board.

Slack faces competition from Microsoft, which launched a Slack-killer collaboration tool, Microsoft Teams, in November, as part of its Office 365 suite. (See Microsoft Attacks Slack, Slack Whacks Back .)

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— Mitch Wagner, Follow me on TwitterVisit my LinkedIn profile, Editor, Light Reading Enterprise Cloud

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mhhf1ve 2/1/2017 | 2:16:50 PM
Re: Better for work Slack does have advantages over email for organizing documents and messages -- and Slack has integrations that allow apps to connect to it so that some things can be done nearly automatically. Sure, I suppose you could build a way to trigger apps with emails, but it wouldn't have the friendly interface that slack (sorta) has. 

Slack started out, though, as a kind of informal way to message with collaborators.. but now that it's added corporate oversight tools, that informal nature of Slack seems to be long gone. But it's somewhat dangerous in this way because some people might still use Slack with a certain amount of informality -- and not realize that all their work messages are being recorded and owned by their employer and subject to all the same rules as "work email" is (but with out the required footer about unintended recipients of Slack messages)....
Michelle 1/31/2017 | 11:15:05 PM
Re: Better for work If I didn't think it were silly, I'd say you just dropped the mic on that one.

So yes, you're right exactly. Typing is super easy so message volume is the real issue -- maybe not so much the platform.
Mitch Wagner 1/31/2017 | 11:12:14 PM
Re: Better for work Folks view Slack as a cure for email overload. But email overload is a function of volume of messages, rather than the user interface. 

When Slack gets as busy as email, it's just as hard to keep up with. 
Michelle 1/31/2017 | 10:47:12 PM
Better for work Slack is all grown up now that it's introducing enterprise features. I have read a lot about Slack fatigue. It's great when it's great, but people get tired of interacting on Slack. They're probably just a small number of users so maybe regular folks will join in.
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