Interview Synopsis

Slack Technologies enterprise growth trajectory

  • Public Equity
  • TMT
  • North America

Workstream collaboration has exploded in the past five years, changing the way people interact at work. Third Bridge interviewed a former global lead from Slack Technologies Inc, one of the leading companies in this space, to find out more about the company and the sector’s future.

Workstream collaboration: Slack’s competition and how it sets itself apart

Even though companies like Slack are relatively new, the specialist points out that collaborating on channels is seen as “the future” of how we will work together. A lot of smaller players, such as Atlassian, have dropped out of the race, and the focus is on Slack versus Microsoft Teams. In terms of the total addressable market, it was estimated that most knowledge workers will use one of these applications within ten years. 

Slack’s potential audience is mostly made up of small and medium-sized businesses (around 100 employees) and mid-market companies (100-1,000), with larger enterprises making up a smaller share. However, workstream collaboration may not be suitable for every type, as this is too different to what some people are used to. But, in time, this will change: “People will adjust to this way of working. It’s clearly superior to the alternative, so it’ll take some time, it’ll maybe take five, six, seven, eight years, but at a certain point, I believe the graph will be exponential.”

The Interview then turned to discussing the competition. Google has announced it will be entering the market but hasn’t released anything yet. There’s also Facebook’s Workplace, which doesn’t seem like a core part of their business. Indisputably, Teams is Slack’s main rival, with a free version of Teams being provided with certain Office 365 licences. Although this means that Teams gets a first chance to impress, many companies then may choose to move onto Slack because of its reputation: “They may be hearing from other CIOs that Slack has been a true game-changer… and at that point, they’ll have enough data to say, ‘Even though I’ve got access to this tool, it really may be worth moving to Slack long-term.’” 

Another differentiator is the Slack Fund, an investment initiative aiming to nurture “an ecosystem of applications” to appear on Slack. There are already some well-known tools, including: Guru, a knowledge-management application; Donut, to help people find mentors at their workplace; and Troops, which connects Slack with Salesforce. On top of helping promote Slack to different kinds of businesses, eventually one could end up becoming a unicorn.

To access all the human insights from Third Bridge’s Slack Technologies Enterprise Growth Trajectory Interview, click here to view the full transcript.

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