Slack Hacks to Help You Say Goodbye to Email
PC Magazine|April 2016

Slack has become one of the most popular tools that groups use to communicate and collaborate, but it’s not necessarily any more efficient than email on its own. These tips will help you get the most out of this powerful new messaging application.

Jill Duffy & Matthew Murraw

Slack is good about letting you know when someone is talking directly to you (or to your channel, or to everyone), but you can make your experience with the software even more productive by adding custom notifications that will trigger an alert whenever someone in any channel uses the words you specify.

Click on your name at the top left and select Preferences. Go to Notification Settings. Scroll down to where you see Highlighted Words. Type in the words or phrases you want to receive special alerts for here. You don’t need to use quotation marks if you want to enter terms of more than one word, and words are not case-sensitive.

To make the notifications most useful, you should select words that have special meaning to you or are directly related to what you're working on. Seeing too many notifications can be worse than too few.

Custom notifications can ensure that you’re alerted to the discussions that are most important to you, but what about the times the opposite is true? After all, not every channel that you join is as important as all the others, and you might not want to hear a sound every time someone in a channel makes an @everyone shout-out.

Start by going to the channel you want to adjust. At the top of the page, click on the gear icon, then select the option about notification preferences. Here you can tweak notifications for both the desktop and mobile versions of Slack, suppress @everyone and @here mentions, or even mute the channel altogether.

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