This might sound dramatic, but I can’t remember (nor do I want to) what it’s like to work in a world without Slack. Especially in hybrid and remote environments, having the ability to ask a quick question, share a brief update before it gets lost, share files, and send GIFs and memes (to make work slightly more fun) is a massive value for team members.
So when I heard that Slack is yet another popular productivity platform announcing generative AI capabilities, I was thrilled to learn more! I’m excited to see what Slack has in store in 2024 and beyond, but in the meantime, keep reading to learn about:
- Slack GPT (what it is and how to use it, plus where to sign up)
- Artificial intelligence (AI) tools you can integrate with Slack
- Slack integrations with other AI-powered apps for even more automation
- The Clockwise integration with Slack and how to set it up today
What is Slack GPT?
First, let’s rewind to May 2023. At World Tour NYC, Salesforce announced Slack GPT—a new, native conversational AI experience integrated into Slack to bring customers efficiencies, enhanced communication, and more. As part of the announcement, Salesforce noted the new native AI, a newly released Slack platform with improvements to Workflow Builder, and an Einstein GPT app for Slack (read more about Einstein GPT and how it works in Salesforce as part of the broader CRM ecosystem).
CEO of Slack, Lidiane Jones, said in the Slack GPT press release,
“Slack GPT is the conversational AI platform of the future, helping organizations easily tap into their trusted customer data and essential employee knowledge so they can work smarter and make smarter decisions faster.”
Following the announcement in May, Slack AI entered the conversation at Salesforce’s Dreamforce 2023 conference in September. For the full rundown, watch the Slack keynote on YouTube here.
How to use Slack GPT?
Slack is releasing some exciting AI capabilities and new features, and at the time of writing, all of the features aren’t available yet, but there’s a lot to look forward to. You’ll be able to use these features right inside of Slack. Here’s the skinny on what’s to come:
- Instantly available channel recaps: If you’re a Slack user and anything like me, you might be in tons of channels and constantly receive access to new channels. Catching up on channel history can be time-consuming, but with AI, you’ll be able to get the highlights quickly to determine what’s most important. Channel recaps will also help you gather status updates without manually reading through tons of data. (Writing assistance to the rescue!)
- Thread summaries: Like channel recaps, Slack users can catch up on lengthy threads with one click. Conversation summaries will help team members focus on what truly matters—the work at hand.
- Ask questions and get answers: Slack customers can ask Slack a question through its conversational interface, and it will return relevant messages, files, channels, and an AI-generated summary. Say goodbye to lost information in Slack!
- New and improved Workflow Builder: Slack wants to make it as easy as possible for people to automate their workday, and the new and enhanced Workflow Builder will enable users to integrate multiple tools in one place.
- Slack lists for more efficient project and task management: Slack lists allow customers to track projects (complete with owners, status, and task details), manage launches and dependencies, and review approvals and requests quickly.
Image source: Salesforce
Slack AI and Slack lists are in the pilot phase this winter. Expect to see Slack lists available in 2024. The new Workflow Builder is available now on paid plans (read more).
Can I use other AI tools with Slack?
Yes! You can use other AI tools with Slack. A popular one is Claude, an AI assistant by Anthropic. There’s a Claude app for Slack available (in beta). You can mention Claude in channels and DMs, and Claude will respond. You can also message Claude one-on-one—just like messaging a helpful coworker.
You can also explore the Slack + OpenAI (GPT-3, DALL-E, Whisper) Zap by Zapier to create workflows, like receiving a response from GPT-3 when a prompt is posted in a specific Slack channel.
Slack AI Integrations
If leveraging AI in Slack excites you, I have more good news! There are some Slack AI integrations available that are sure to make your life easier. Below are some other AI productivity tools to integrate with Slack, listed alphabetically.
DailyBot | Standups, AI, ChatGPT
With the DailyBot Slack app, you can automate check-ins, standups, retrospectives, and team check-ins and run them asynchronously. In addition, you can automate kudos and recognition efforts, send forms directly in the chat, strengthen team relationships with virtual coffee pairings, and more. DailyBot now also has AI-powered chat and workflows built right in.
Otter AI Meeting Assistant
The Otter app for Slack is a neat one for making meetings more effective for everyone involved. The app automatically shares meeting updates with teammates in real-time for better alignment before (e.g., meeting reminder), during (e.g., meeting notes and assigned action items), and after meetings (e.g., meeting notes and an automated summary).
If you struggle to keep up with Slack channels and threads (and never have enough time to get caught up), consider trying the Spoke app. Spoke creates AI-generated Digests of your favorite channels, summarizes long threads and busy channels, and produces smart summaries with outcomes and action items.
And finally, the Talla app for Slack helps customer support and sales teams automate workflows and answer common questions to save time. This reduces time wasted digging up information and surfing through Slack channels to find answers. Another perk: Talla leverages team knowledge to answer questions, and when Talla doesn’t know how to answer a question, it orchestrates a workflow to eliminate the knowledge gap.
Clockwise Slack Integration
There’s one more Slack app I think you’ll love: the Clockwise for Slack app. This app helps users communicate their working (or nonworking) status to boost productivity and avoid interruptions. You can automatically sync your calendar to your Slack status, turn on Do Not Disturb (silence notifications) when you’re in a meeting or doing deep work in Focus Time, receive a daily preview of your meeting, schedule and cancel meetings directly from Slack, and more. You can learn more about Clockwise here.
And it just gets better from here! With Clockwise AI, you’ll soon be able to manage all of your calendar needs via chat, and you won’t have to leave Slack to do so. Clockwise AI Scheduler is a first-of-its-kind calendar experience (and the assistant we all need!) Clockwise AI uses natural language processing paired with your Clockwise preferences to help easily optimize your schedule (and others’ schedules).
You can chat with Clockwise and ask it to take care of your scheduling requests directly in Slack (or the Clockwise web app). Join the waitlist and get ready to watch your calendar handle itself.