Ever step away from your computer only to come back to a flurry of messages in a Slack channel? Soon you can get caught up with the click of a button. On Thursday, Slack's parent company Salesforce announced Slack GPT — generative AI that works natively within everyone's favorite work app.
First, we need to clear something up. Back in March (which feels like years ago in AI time) Slack announced a ChatGPT bot that can be added to the platform as an integration, like Giphy or Google Calendar. With ChatGPT for Slack, you can talk to the bot as you would a member of your team and ask it to do things for you like summarize a thread or draft a message. But Slack GPT is different in that it's embedded within the app's core functions.
Generative AI tools like ChatGPT have been touted as the ultimate productivity tool. In a matter of seconds, large language models (LLMs) can generate code, summarize long documents, and draft humanlike copy all from simple prompts. Companies like Slack are seizing the chance to develop products around the revolutionary technology. Work tools like Zoom and Grammarly have also jumped on the AI bandwagon.
Slack GPT will have features that integrate into the app's native interface, as well as no-code tools to customize workflows. Next to the button that shows unread messages, you can click "Summarize it" to get an overview of what you've missed. If you're on a huddle, Slack GPT can generate a summary based on the audio transcript and drop it in the chat. You can also use Slack GPT to composes messages and adjust the tone, which also works within Canvas, Slack's digital whiteboard for planning and collaboration.
Slack's AI tools are designed to be very customizable. Businesses can use ChatGPT, Anthropic's AI chatbot Claude, or use their own LLMs or proprietary software to avoid any sensitive data leaks (cough, cough, Samsung). If users do end up using ChatGPT or Claude, their data won't be used to train the model.
But you also don't have to be a developer to set up Slack GPT custom workflows, e.g. notify users when a new customer lead comes up, draft an email response, share it in Canvas. The Workflow Builder tool has very user-friendly buttons for creating a sequence like that.
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ChatGPT and Claude for Slack are both available to install now, and Workflow Builder will launch this summer.
Sadly Slack users will have to wait a little longer for the native features, which have a later release date sometime this year. Guess we'll have to use our own human brains until then.