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Slack’s Latest Outage – How Did Your IT Team Respond?

Slack’s Latest Outage – How Did Your IT Team Respond?

Monday, long regarded as the worst day of the week, made good on its reputation for several thousand Slack users a few weeks ago. What started as an initial server problem at Slack during the wee hours of October 5th, devolved into a performance outage that impacted users for more than six hours.

As shared by Slack, the popular collaboration tool experienced latency in almost all aspects of its service which included “the sending and loading of messages in threads and channels, as well as searching, calling, and accessing administrative features.”

Though IT disruptions are common among popular work tools like Slack (remember the MS Teams outage way back in the early days of the pandemic?) that doesn’t make them any more tolerable for IT leaders and digital workers. It’s often after an outage is detected that many IT teams go down divergent paths.

While Slack’s support team worked feverishly in the background to resolve their internal issues, I’m certain two very different timelines emerged that day for the typical IT department versus a Nexthink-backed IT department.

Nexthink-backed IT teams were able to respond to the Slack outage with far fewer actions and zero disruption to employees. By noon that day, IT had successfully transitioned all end-users to another company-approved collaboration tool.

This is how a standard IT team experienced the Slack outage:

  • 5:58 a.m. PDT
    Slack announces first signs of degraded API performance for users.
  • 9:00 a.m. PDT
    Help Desk starts receiving tickets from employees referencing poor functionality with Slack.

Total ticket count=23.

  • 9:30 a.m. PDT
    Help Desk sends email message to all employees urging them to switch to other company-approved collaboration tools until Slack service is fully restored.

Open rate for email: 7%

  • 10:00 a.m. PDT
    Help Desk leaves voice recording for employees: if you are encountering issues with Slack, please switch to another company-approved collaboration tool until service is fully restored.

Total ticket count=112.

  • 10:30 a.m. PDT
    Help Desk posts company-wide message on Yammer explaining the outage and once again, urging Slack users to switch to another tool.
  • 11:00 a.m. PDT
    Help Desk starts receiving tickets from employees asking for training and guidance on how to use their new collaboration tools.

Total ticket count=157.

  • 12:00 p.m. PDT

Help Desk agents start assigning themselves to upper management employees that have submitted tickets. Agents reach out via their company-approved messaging app and field any end-user questions.

  • 2:30 p.m. PDT
    Help Desk sends email to employees with training documents and videos on how to use their company-approved tools.

Open rate for email: 14%

  • 4:30 p.m. PDT
    Help Desk sends email survey to employees to discover if they’re encountering any issues with their business tools

Open rate for email: 6%

  • 10:30 p.m. PDT
    Slack announces they’ve resolved the majority of issues that were impacting users.

And this is how a Nexthink-enabled IT department responded to the Slack outage:

  • 5:58 a.m. PDT
    Slack announces first signs of degraded API performance for users.
  • 8:30 a.m. PDT
    IT’s End-User Experience Team receives alert for a drop in their company’s Productivity & Collaboration Experience Score. The EU Team quickly drills down into Nexthink’s dashboards and identifies several employees that are encountering issues with Slack.

Total ticket count = 0.

  • 8:35 a.m.
    EU Experience Team sets a Nexthink-automated onscreen message to send directly to Slack-enabled devices upon boot up. The message informs users about the Slack outage and instructs them to switch to another company-approved tool for the day. Users must engage with the message for it to disappear. A link to training documents and videos are included in the onscreen message, as is an option for users to schedule one-on-one help with IT.

Nexthink message engagement rate: 100%

Total ticket count = 0.

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  • 8:45 a.m. PDT
    EU Experience Team sets a Nexthink-automated message to send to all previous Slack users (in-office & remote) that are actively using their devices. Users will receive the message one hour after the first Nexthink message is shown. Those that still need help are reverted to Help Desk agents who are able to remote in and provide assistance.

Nexthink message engagement rate: 100%

Total ticket count = 0.

  • 12:30 p.m. PDT
    EU Experience Team finds Productivity & Collaboration Experience Score has returned to previous level.

Team breaks for lunch.

Total ticket count = 0.

  • 10:30 p.m. PDT
    Slack announces they’ve resolved the majority of issues that were impacting users.

How your IT team handles problems speaks volumes about your employee experience

Application performance issues are common in the world of remote work. But often, IT is defined by how quickly they respond to those issues and prevent a computing experience from going from bad to worse.

If your IT department is eager to improve its work anywhere setup, and they seek tangible, proactive solutions, then contact a Nexthink representative today.

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Tom Lauzon, Solution Consultant, Nexthink