Slack redesigns user profiles for better connectivity

Slack lets users customize their profiles with more detailed personal information, including audio clips that reveal how they pronounce their names.

On Wednesday the company announced several updates to its products. User profiles accessed by colleagues have undergone a visual change to reveal more information about the user, including the addition of three new fields.

Under the contact information, a user can provide a list of ways to communicate, including additional phone numbers and email addresses. The About Me section provides space for information such as birthdays, pets, and spoken language. An organizational chart under the heading People is accessible.

Other additions include a namespace field that can be embedded in user profiles that play a short audio clip, as well as space for phonetic spelling. When hovering the mouse cursor over a username, hover cards will also appear to display their profile picture and an abbreviated version of their profile information.

Slack profile name pronunciation Slack

The audio clip lets colleagues hear how Slack users pronounce their names. (Click to enlarge image.)

UI updates are now being rolled out to all users from June 1, although the company says the changes may take weeks to take effect for all users.

The goal is to help build connections between employees using its platform, Slack said, especially those working in separate locations.

Maxwell Heyman, Slack’s product director, said, “In a world where working from anywhere, having a deeper background about colleagues not only promotes better collaboration, but also encourages a stronger sense of inclusion and inclusion.” He said updates to Slack’s profiles enable customer organizations to “provide more context about people and people to share more about themselves”.

Slack profile hover card Slack

Hover card reveals user profile pictures and information.

Raul Kastan, a senior analyst at 451 Research, a division of S&P Global Market Intelligence, said the newly added profile UI updates to Slack will help companies support a hybrid workplace, especially when it comes to team building.

According to 451 Research’s 2021 “Voice of the Enterprise” survey, more than two-thirds (68%) of companies expect to support a more distributed workforce over the next two years. Doing so would be significant (24%) or somewhat challenging (43%), according to respondents.

“Updates may seem small at first glance, a subtle improvement in the slack user experience; However, they highlight how the company is expanding its embedded role, the intelligence behind the behind-the-scenes collaboration tool, ”said Castañón.

Slack recently added to its Atlas product – a paid add-on that was launched last year in its Business + and Enterprise Grid plans for customers based on the acquisition of enterprise directory firm Rimeto in 2020. It includes smart tags, which enable user profile search for “tags” such as language or focus area. This can help a person find a fluent Spanish-speaking colleague in Spanish to test a translation, for example. The flexible text feature gives users a larger space to write an extended personal bio of 5,000 rich text characters, meaning the ability to include emoji, code blocks, line breaks and more.

Copyright © 2022 IDG Communications, Inc.

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