- Write and share code using snippets
- Surface git activity
- Utilize internal integrations
- Improve developer wellbeing
- Protect deep work hours
- Sort your slack channels in to groups
- Utilize EmojiOps
Ready to take your Slack game to the next level?
We’ve dug deep on developer centric Slack hacks that will make your working life easier.
1. Write and share code using snippets
Slack is a brilliant way to collaborate on code and get speedy feedback from colleagues. Snippets in Slack allow you to share log files, config files and code with your colleagues in a wide variety of languages. It makes downloading these snippets, reviewing the raw file and leaving comments rapid and easy.
Just type ⌘ + Shift + Enter (Mac) or Ctrl + Shift + Enter (Windows) to activate snippets within Slack.
2. Surface git activity
Slack should be your development collaboration hub, as having collaboration happen across multiple platforms can distort the conversation.
You can integrate with the likes of GitHub with ease, allowing your team to post commits, comments and pull requests through GitHub directly to Slack, keeping the team notified and looped in when requests have been submitted.
3. Utilize internal integrations
Sometimes the ‘out of the box’ integrations just don’t cut it. There will be times when your development team would benefit from a bespoke workflow, combining data and pathways from multiple integrations into a single message or flow.
Some example uses of internal integrations are:
- Managing help desk tickets, allowing developers to raise these tickets directly from Slack, whilst automating the triage process to help empower your support team to deal with bugs quickly.
- Managing new access requests, such as adding new users to Slack.
- Surface your deployment process, adding in approval steps, reviews and notifying colleagues when merging to main.
- Publishing content directly to your website from Slack.
But, the world is your oyster! Get creative and start analyzing your flows – would they benefit from some Slack automation goodness?
4. Improve developer wellbeing
Slack isn’t just a collaboration tool, it’s also a powerful insight into our working habits and wellbeing. A 2021 survey found that 83% of developers surveyed were suffering from burnout, so any tool at our disposal to reduce this figure should be pounced upon.
Slack now offers an integration with Adadot, the fitness tracker for work. Through just a few clicks you can integrate your Slack usage with Adadot, pulling through a host of collaboration and wellbeing data to the handy dashboards on offer. This will empower developers with a greater understanding of their collaboration patterns, helping them reduce burnout contributors such as long hours, fragmentation and out of hours communications. You can try Adadot for free here.
5. Go deep
As a developer it’s critical to get time to focus. Setting up your Slack account to facilitate this is absolutely key, otherwise that red notification and ‘click click’ noise will be pulling you out of your flow state in no time.
Agree an emoji (more on that shortly) with your team that indicates you’re currently unavailable and doing deep work, and update your status to this whenever appropriate.
There are also a ton of Slack commands that can help manage disturbances. For example, you can mute and unmute channels or DMs by typing /mute in the message field. Equally, pause all notifications and go into Do Not Disturb mode by typing the /dnd slack command along with a specific time of day or time frame.
6. Sort your Slack channels in to groups
The left hand nav can get a bit unwieldy at times, stuffed with far too many channels. A game changer for making this easier to digest is grouping these channels into sections.
To create a section simply right click a given channel and select ‘move to new section’. You might choose to theme sections by team, but an interesting approach is to instead do so by priority, such as ‘check daily’. You can then choose different notification settings for each group of channels, creating an efficient and bespoke setup to your comms patterns.
7. Use emojis
EmojiOps is an increasingly common practice with development teams, where the use of emojis shortcuts communication through quick, visual, and crucially trackable icons. Some uses are:
- Communicating status without conversation
- 👍🏼 Acknowledged
- 👀 Reviewing now
- 💬 Comments made
- ✅ Approved
- Message priority
- 🔴 Urgent priority, houston we have a problem
- 🟡 Middle priority, causing a blockage
- 🔵 Low priority, get to it when you can
Adadot are currently looking at how to surface the usage of emojis in your team, for example how quickly things get approved, or how many urgent messages occur in a given week. Keep an eye on our collaboration dashboard for updates.
Over to you
Take some time out of your day to reflect on how you use Slack. Can you revamp your approach to include any of the above seven top tips?
And remember, you are what you measure. Get onto Adadot to baseline your collaboration data for either yourself or your team as a whole, then see how any changes you make drive those numbers up.