By Peter Frankl.

I’m a one-year veteran of Slack messaging. The experience is not what I thought it would be.

The app encourages more communication than in a physical office

The people that you work with on a day to day basis are only one click away. A messaging app actually brings people closer to you than would be the case in a physical office. You are naturally hesitant to walk over and interrupt someone you can see is busy. On the other hand, with a messaging app, everyone assumes everyone else is busy but that doesn’t stop anyone from sending a message.

Email is the new snail mail

A standard email starts with apologies for the delayed / late / belated reply. The majority of the content of an email is logos, addresses, disclaimers and lengthy formalities. People in your team already have this information obviously.

Once app usage takes off in an organisation, email starts to be used mainly for external communications. It is great to declutter the email messages of clients, suppliers and spammers of course, from internal communications.

Improves the quality of gossip

A messaging app keeps the conversation professional. Depending on the firm’s app settings, it might not be possible to delete a message completely. In any case, because it is text you always have a chance to think before you write and edit after you think. The text record of it discourages the worst type of gossip which is probably a good thing.

Apps such as Slack are widely used for interoffice banter. In my opinion there is nothing wrong with that. In fact it makes the banter quicker than when a co-worker arrives in your physical office (uninvited) for a 15 minute chat about nothing to do with anything.

Thumbs up for apps

A good messaging system becomes an instant portal /notice board.

A thumbs up is all that’s needed usually. When a conversation or stream has concluded, all you need is a thumbs up rather than a lengthy reiteration, formal sign-off and launching of an email into cyberspace.