Slack Analytics: Using Data to Improve Collaborative Efforts

Happy Das
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Slack Analytics: Using Data to Improve Collaborative Efforts

Happy Das
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In managing a business, one of your primary goals is to deliver an effective service that creates a sense of customer appreciation, contributing positively to the bottom line. However, determining whether you're making a genuine difference can be challenging.

Introducing Slack Analytics — the lesser-known feature inside Slack. Although Slack is primarily known for its integrations with over 2,000 apps, customizability, and accessibility, it also possesses noteworthy data analytical capabilities. We’re not just talking about performing basic calculations within Slack itself, but a wealth of data that allows you to accurately measure your team's response times and monitor each customer interaction.

In this article, we will explore various Slack Analytics and metrics to help you gain insight into how your internal teams interact with the platform and how external organizations collaborate with your business. But before we get into the nitty-gritty, let us go through an overview of the feature.

What Is Slack Analytics?

Slack Analytics is a feature that provides insights into how an organization uses the platform, helping you understand communication patterns, usage statistics, and other key metrics. These insights can be valuable for optimizing team collaboration and productivity. The Slack Analytics dashboard displays information such as the number of messages sent, the percentage of activity in public vs. private channels, active users, and more.

How to Access the Analytics Dashboard in Slack?

Here's how to view the dashboard via your Slack workspace:

  1. Click on your workspace name from your desktop at the top left of your screen.
  2. Select Tools from the menu, then click Analytics. This is shown in the screenshot below:
  1. You can view data for the entire history of your workspace for the last 30 days or for all time by selecting the option from the drop-down menu.
  2. Click Export to review data outside of Slack or share with a team member.

What Slack Analytics Can Help You Understand

Slack provides crucial analytics for your team's activity, and it might be tempting to go into these reports to see if you can find new opportunities. Let’s quickly look at what they can and cannot tell you to help you make the most of them.

Membership

Members Joined the Workspace: It refers to the total number of members who have joined your specific Slack workspace, regardless of their activity or participation level.

Weekly Active Members: Understand the number of members in your workspace who actively use Slack every week. Active usage may be determined by actions such as sending messages, reading messages, responding to messages, making calls, and more. This metric is particularly important as it helps you understand the level of engagement with Slack within your team every week.

In addition to the aforementioned basic metrics, you can dive deeper into how users engage within the workspace by selecting the tab Members. You can find information about them below:

  1. How many days has a user been active within a given time frame?
  2. The number of messages each user has sent within a specific period.
  3. The timestamp of a user's last active interaction with Slack.

Additional metrics can be included to assess other aspects of user engagement. By closely examining these individual engagement metrics, you can identify areas for improvement and better understand your team's Slack usage patterns.

Messaging

Messages Sent on a Specific Date: It displays the number of all messages sent across the workspace on a particular date. This can help you identify patterns or spikes in communication.

Messages Read in Public vs. Private: This data shows the volume of messages read by users in public channels versus private channels or Direct Messages (DMs). It can illustrate where most collaboration and communication occur in your workspace.

Number of Direct Messages Sent: It helps you count one-on-one sent within a specific period. Tracking this can elucidate private or direct communication volume instead of channel discussion.

Messages Sent in Public vs. Private Channels: This metric contrasts the number of messages sent in public channels with those in private channels and helps in understanding how many messages were sent vs. how many messages were seen by the members.

Channel

The Slack Analytics dashboard allows you to access statistics and analyze channel usage, including:

  • The number of users in a channel.
  • The count of messages posted.
  • The number of individuals participating in communication within the channel - either by posting or reading messages.

For a customized analysis, you can filter the report by selecting channel names (including prefixes) and various date ranges, helping you understand trends over specific durations and channels. You can add more data to the report by clicking on the Edit columns option to refine your insights further. This feature lets you modify the displayed metrics and provide more detail about your team's Slack usage.

What's Missing from Slack's Analytics

Slack has so many nifty features that make it worthwhile; however, like any other tool, the data analytics aspect of the application is extremely limited. Here’s why:

  1. Equivalence between Customers and Agents: Unlike other platforms, Slack Analytics doesn't differentiate between internal and external interactions. It treats customers and agents on par, making it hard to discern customer queries from a sea of messages.
  2. Scarcity of Customer Support Metrics: Slack Analytics falls short of assisting teams in tracking essential metrics such as resolution time, customer satisfaction, and first response times - imperatives to efficient customer support.
  3. Absence of Thread-based Metrics: Despite supporting conversation threading, Slack Analytics doesn't provide insights on thread-specific interactions, limiting the understanding of issue discussions within these threads.
  4. Exclusion of Private Channels in Analytics: Slack's otherwise useful channel analytics exclude private channels - where customer interactions are often kept confidential, hindering tracking engagement or other customer-centric metrics.

In short, while Slack Analytics provides some useful information, there may be limitations to the depth and variety of insights it can offer. External tools such as ClearFeed may be needed for organizations better to understand their team's collaboration and communication patterns.

How ClearFeed Enables Advanced Insights in Slack

Businesses using Slack analytics to understand their team's internal collaboration and customer engagement can greatly benefit from integrating ClearFeed as it provides access to advanced metrics beyond Slack's native capabilities.

ClearFeed is an AI-powered platform that operates within the Slack environment to enhance customer service functionality. Its core focus is to refine customer processes by providing insightful analytics derived from team and customer interactions.

With ClearFeed’s Slack Insights, you can understand customer request load, response times, service level management, and more. This data can be broken down by channels, responders, owners, assignees, and collections. The reporting features several metrics, including:

  • Number of Requests (a request being a unit of customer interaction that can span many messages)
  • Number of Slack Messages
  • Time to First Response (to Customer Requests)
  • Time to Response (to any Customer message)
  • Resolution Time (of a Customer Request)
  • First Resolution Time (of a Customer Request)
  • First Response and Resolution Time SLA-Breached Percentages

For any applied metric, you can also slice through data by various parameters (request status, channel, agent, etc.). It also has sub-filters, for instance, channel, status, priority, etc., to refine the data further. 

By integrating Slack with ClearFeed Analytics, we can effectively address the frequent inquiries of Customer Success and Support teams. Here are a few illustrative examples:

How Can We Find Slack Channels with High Engagement?

By combining Slack and ClearFeed Analytics, the efficiency in addressing customer support inquiries can be significantly enhanced:

  1. Slack’s Channel Analytics: This feature allows tracking engagement within channels by message count or active user count. Consistent naming patterns for channels (like a common prefix) can streamline the analytics process.
  2. ClearFeed’s Insights Module: This add-on provides next-level insights beyond message counts - it focuses on interaction levels like customer requests. It filters out bot and support agent messages and includes analytics on private channels. This feature aids in easily tracking all customer interactions.
  3. Customer Interaction Reports: Using ClearFeed, reports displaying customers with the highest interaction rates over certain periods can be effortlessly generated. This is made possible by pre-creating a collection of customer Slack channels and utilizing ClearFeed to provide analytics on these channels.

How Can We Find the Response Time in Slack Channels?

Slack Analytics lacks features regarding response time. This shortcoming can be smoothly overcome by utilizing the ClearFeed Insights module. By selecting the "First Response Time" (or alternatively, "Response Time") metric, creating a channel-wise report becomes a breeze. The subsequent example illustrates this process for a "Customer Slack Channels" collection, encompassing all of our customer-based channels.

Want to know more about our Analytics and Reporting feature and how we can help you track every request on Slack? Get in touch with us here.

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