Slack is building a work management tool designed to allow users to track team projects directly from the collaboration app.
The “lists” feature, announced Wednesday ahead of parent company Salesforce’s Dreamforce event next week, provides functions similar to the likes of Asana and Trello, with the ability to create, assign, and manage individual tasks as part of a larger project.
This can be done via a spreadsheet or kanban-style board layout view, with record cards containing information on related tasks, as well as information about status, due date, and which team member is responsible.
It’s also possible to attach files and documents, such as Slack’s Canvas, that relate to the project or task.
The tool will broaden the functionality Slack’s app, which is mostly focused on unstructured data, namely the conversations posted in channels and direct messages. Lists provides a way to track and manage the structured data that workers encounter as part of team projects, said Ali Rayl, senior vice president of product management at Slack, whether that’s tracking approvals and requests or managing a project launch.
“Work often needs structured data: everybody uses spreadsheets for a reason,” said Rayl. “We realized that there’s an opportunity to bring this more structured data concept into the product. What we can do is wrap our conversational interface around it, so it’s great for all kinds of work that’s more structured, more discreet, and more trackable.”
Users can discuss the progress of projects in the Lists tool; the discussions appear similar to threads in the main app, where an “@mention” can draw the attention of a coworkers. Conversations are kept with the List record, but can be shared into a channel if needed.
Lists will be available in private preview this winter to select customers, a spokesperson said, ahead of a planned launch next year. Pricing information will be announced closer to general availability.
To read this article in full, please click here