At Guru, Slack has been a core part of delivering on our mission to bring you the knowledge you need to do your job. As companies continue to rely on Slack for real-time collaboration and communication, it’s critical that Guru continue to live in Slack as well. Today marks another step forward in Guru delivering a best-in-class knowledge experience within Slack.

Slack + Guru: Slack Block Kit

The Guru + Slack story dates back to late 2015, when we built the first App for Slack that allowed users to easily capture, search, and distribute knowledge directly in the app. Now the Guru App for Slack is being used by category-leading companies like Shopify, Zoom, Square, Intercom, BuzzFeed, and Autodesk. Here's a quick rundown on our App for Slack's evolution: 

  • In December of 2015, we introduced the Guru App for Slack the same day Slack launched their App Directory.

  • In May of 2018, we introduced Slack Actions into our integration the same day Slack launched Actions functionality.

  • Today, we’re pleased to announce our support of Slack’s Block Kit launch, which introduces a new design framework within Slack that gives you simpler, more intuitive apps in Slack.

In the early days of the Guru app for Slack, the experience within Slack was mostly text-based, but this experience has grown in functionality as Slack has introduced more and more features like interactive messages and Slack Actions. Guru’s been there every step of the way, ensuring we full take advantage of Slack’s integration's functionality.

"We are huge users of Slack at Greenhouse. Internal conversations happen in Slack all day long. Having Guru + Slack ensures our team has a highly streamlined workflow with Guru ensuring all our knowledge lives right where conversations are taking place." -Victoria Moss, Director of Sales Operations at Greenhouse

When we were first introduced to Block Kit, we could immediately see how it was another massive step in the right direction. We could use Block Kit to build the kinds of deep, rich experiences our users have grown accustomed to having in destinations outside of Slack, with more familiar UI/UX patterns and more interactive content. The first and most immediate use case for Block Kit was to make our help menu more interactive and action-oriented, allowing users to more easily onboard and get value from the Guru App for Slack.

Block Kit helped us improve the help menu experience in two critical ways:

  • With styling and divider updates, we compartmentalized that list by grouping similar actions, and made the content more digestible and easier to read.
  • Inline buttons and overflow menus enabled us to make this an interactive, action-oriented onboarding experience. Now users don’t need to type key commands (and make sure they typed them correctly); they can just hit the button and take action.

The Guru Slack bot before and after using the Slack Block KitWith Block Kit, our help menu is now action-oriented, helping our users onboard faster.

Our help menu was just one place where we able to apply the benefits of Block Kit. We used inline buttons in our activity feed interface to bring actions closer to the feeds they were being performed on. We also used overflow menus to hide infrequently used actions and focus the user on the information they need. We’ve only scratched the surface of how we can use Block Kit to make our bot more interactive and we are excited to apply to more interactions.

We’re thrilled to continue to partner with Slack in building a best-in-class knowledge experience within the world’s leading collaboration hub. Stay tuned for more exciting upgrades to the Guru knowledge network in May with our Spring Launch.

To check out the Guru app for Slack for yourself, request a demo below:

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