Last week’s Slack Frontiers had impeccable timing, aspirational messaging, creative imagery and a sense of purpose that turns casual users into cheerleaders. That’s a pretty rich buildup – and all of it is true – but there’s a bigger question that now must be asked: will the market buy it?
Sometimes a picture says 1,000 words, and at face value, that’s all I really need to say here.
Most people still associate Slack as being a messaging platform, and while that’s true, the main message from their Frontiers 2018 event last week in San Francisco was that you can “do practically anything in Slack.” I was one of a handful of analysts in attendance, and BCStrategies is the right place to share my takeaways.
Back in the 12th century – way, way before the Internet – the great Jewish thinker, Maimonides wrote his most famous work, The Guide for the Perplexed. I’ve tried reading it, but like Joyce’s Ulysses, it’s too dense and cryptic for all but the most studious readers. That said, from my Jewish education, I at least know that what the perplexed among us need is a better understanding of the relationship between religion and philosophy. Messy stuff – then and now – and I’m kind of feeling the same way lately about the relationship between communication and collaboration.
Earlier this week Microsoft announced a long-awaited update to Teams, its workplace collaboration software which was first launched last year. The announcement of a free version means Microsoft Teams can directly compete with Slack.
This offer is designed for small businesses and groups of coworkers that don’t have a commercial Office 365 subscription. Now with this free introductory experience, any group can use Teams as their hub for teamwork and discover the value of Office 365 as they grow and become effective using these enhanced collaboration capabilities.
I often write recaps of industry events, and I have first impressions to share for Enterprise Connect in two regards. First, I’m getting my thoughts organized while they’re fresh and the buzz is still strong, but also because this was my first time attending the event. Most of my BCStrategies colleagues have been going for years, so I’m seeing Enterprise Connect with fresh eyes.
Enterprise Connect 2018 happened last week, and, as always, there were interesting trends and new topics that emerged as important for organizations to consider in their strategy and vendor choices. These topics and disruptions show how the industry is changing. First though, while hot new technologies dominated the headlines, the reality is that organizations have to deal with the reality of their requirements and their current implementations. Brent Kelly and I did the Cisco/Microsoft comparison session (as we have for the last five years).
We are at a pivotal time in enterprise communications and collaboration.