Teams · Communication

Slack vs. Hipchat for team communication?

Pete Petrin Software Engineer at Onevest

October 31st, 2014

We have been using hipchat    for a long while and I'd say were happy enough. Some UI things that are annoying and mobile isn't great. Lately Ive been hearing great things about slack. I don't really want to switch systems for a week or two just to test it, so wanted to hear if others have used both and how the two compare and how your team has liked/not liked one or the other.

What I'm concerned with is team productivity and communication.

Kate Hiscox

October 31st, 2014

We switched to Slack from HipChat. It was the right decision. The only thing we struggle with is pricing for Slack. It's too expensive per user for big teams so we find ourselves trying not to use the archive feature.

Monica Borrell CEO and Founder at Cardsmith

October 31st, 2014

I'm becoming a HUGE fan of Slack!  My team switched from Skype to Slack about a month ago and everyone on the team is loving it.  We are a distributed mix of developers who tend to be more quiet and marketeers who are obviously not quiet and it provides a nice 'social' atmosphere for all in addition to being very useful to enhancing team communication.  We have 7 people total and a few public channels:  e.g. business, general, product in addition to private chat.  the public channels have reduced the clutter in my email significantly and we've had NO issues technically.  It is free to try, and very easy to setup and start using.  

Will Koffel Co-Founder at Outlearn

October 31st, 2014

I've used both (though more HipChat).  I find that Slack's UI is confusing for me.  The relationships between channels and people and chats isn't as obvious as HipChat.  And the UI feels "web-based" no matter what client I'm on.  HipChat has nicer native clients.

The main advantages I've seen for Slack are:
- Support for switching easily between multiple accounts, if you work with different companies who use it
- Better support for using it as a document repository, searching through attachments, managing screenshots, etc.

Lots of people rave about how many features slack has, which I suppose is good if "more features wins".  But it depends a lot on whether it's your central collaboration suite, or just something you need for chat features (HipChat has added video chat too recently).


Shingai Samudzi

November 1st, 2014

As with any communication system, you'll only get out what your team culture enables you to put in. That said, from my experience, Slack gets my vote because rather than prescribe the "how" of team communication as so many apps do, its basically a platform that allows you implement whatever method you prefer, with very simple UI for centralizing and making transparent conversations around key topics.

Barrett Sonntag Developer, Tech Evangelist, Entrepreneur

November 4th, 2014

I've had a chance to use several group chat solutions, and the favorite by far is Slack. The web interface is excellent, how they handle inline graphics and previews is very nice, the notification settings per group is essential when you get larger groups they enjoy having a nonsense chat group you can join but not be pestered by. We have our Slack setup to get Github notifications for pushes and issues. The mobile app, for iOS at least, is also excellent.

The killer feature for me though is support for multiple teams and projects. I can join more than one team, and switching between them is extremely easy on both the desktop and mobile interfaces. That is a killer feature if you work with different companies or teams.

LeeSend

October 31st, 2014

We switched too, Slack works better on mobile for sure

Tom Maiaroto Full Stack Consultant

October 31st, 2014

I'm a fan of Gitter.im if you use GitHub. At work we use HipChat. I feel like Gitter is a nicer product (I love its sidebar with history of issues and commits). I like it's integration for notifications as well (so certain events can send messages to the sidebar and such - ie. a build from a builder server)...But really it's just personal preference at this point. IRC works as well of course and many of us open source folk like to hang out on there.

As far as productivity is concerned, I'm not sure any of these solutions is going to provide a benefit there more than the next tool.

Chris Korhonen Experienced Product Engineer & Leader, CTO of Minibar Delivery

October 31st, 2014

We are currently in the HipChat camp having looked at both applications. The main reason for that is whilst Slack is maybe a bit nicer on the eye for general chat, we’ve found that HipChat is much better in terms of readability and information density when you are piping a lot of information into chat from external sources - in addition to internal communication we also use HipChat extensively for operations stuff. Over the past few months it feels like HipChat have stepped up their game a lot with their client apps, and I hope this continues. I will say that I think Slack has overtaken it a bit in terms of features (If you’re listening HipChat, just give me watch words!). Also I do like the ease of use when it comes to integrations. Pricing-wise they are about the same, while both have a free plan there is enough incentive to upgrade to the paid plans (for Slack its to have more than a few integrations, for HipChat archiving and search).

Angelo H

October 31st, 2014

We've been working on a product, Peer.im, to allow you to provide sales and service support to your customers and cross-teams communication from one account. We want to provide a simple external communication/collaboration tool that most of current internal tools lack.

This is what Peer.im provides:
- Sharable URLs for conversations
- Allow customers to send instant messages to your team
- Directory for your team and guests

Disclosure: I work for Peer.im

Gabriel Roybal Sourcing Manager at Science Exchange

November 4th, 2014

My team over at GroupHub.io has moved on to using Hall.com for all of our internal communications.  We have found this to be the best tool for organizing and communicating across multiple projects.  Hall's latest integrations have also contributed to our continued productivity and efficiency.