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What is Slack?

Slack is an instant-messaging tool that helps you to communicate and work with other National Centre for Atmospheric Science (NCAS) staff.

Slack encourages collaboration, regular updates and communication between all our staff – without clogging up your email inbox. It’s an easy way to stay in touch with everything that’s happening across our distributed organisation.

Most of our staff use Slack to talk to each other everyday, and we’d love you to join in too.

Joining Slack

You can use Slack via your internet browser or you can download the Slack desktop application.

To use Slack via your internet browser

  1. Visit the Slack website
  2. Sign into the NCAS workspace by clicking the ‘Sign In’ button at the top of the page.
  3. You will be prompted to enter your workspace URL. The NCAS workspace url is ‘ncas-talk’
  4. You will be prompted to log-in using your NCAS Google account or a guest account. You should choose to use your NCAS Google account.
  5. Enter your NCAS Google account details 
    1. Your NCAS Google account email is firstname.lastname@ncas.ac.uk
    2. Enter your NCAS Google account password
  6. You will arrive at the NCAS Slack workspace!
  7. Follow the ‘How to join a Slack conversation channel’ guide to start talking to your colleagues.

To use Slack via the Slack desktop application

  1. Download the Slack application. You may need help from your institutional IT team to install the application.
    1. For Windows users, download the Slack application. Click to install.
    2. For Mac users, find Slack in the App Store. Click to install. 
  2. Open the Slack application.
  3. Click to ‘Sign In.’ This will open a new internet browser window where you will be required to enter log-in details.
  4. You will be prompted to enter your workspace URL. The NCAS workspace url is ‘ncas-talk’
  5. You will be prompted to log-in using your NCAS Google account or a guest account. You should choose to use your NCAS Google account.
  6. Enter your NCAS Google account details 
    1. Your NCAS Google account email is firstname.lastname@ncas.ac.uk
    2. Enter your NCAS Google account password
  7. Your internet browser will now try to launch the NCAS Slack Workspace on your desktop Slack application. If you are asked whether you want to allow this website to open a program on your computer, click ‘Allow’.
  8. You will arrive at the NCAS Slack workspace!
  9. Follow the ‘How to join a Slack conversation channel’ guide to start talking to your colleagues.

Slack Channels

Slack uses ‘channels’ to organise conversations between colleagues. Each Slack ‘channel’ is essentially a chat group – where a group of people can talk about a certain topic.

When you log-in to the NCAS Slack workspace you will automatically be part of three channels. These are #general #random and #twitter.

You can join or create channels for different working groups, projects, office locations or anything else that’s relevant for your work. Quite a few channels have already been set up. Follow the instructions below to find conversation channels that you’d like to be part of.

How to join a Slack conversation channel

There are many conversation channels within the NCAS Slack workplace, such as #ceda_general, #ncas-comms and #webinars.

You can easily find and join channels that are relevant to your work.

  1. Open Slack and click the ‘Channels’ option on the left-hand side menu.
  2. This will open the channel browsing menu. You can browse the different channels that have been created by other staff members.
  3. Click on any channel that you’d like to join. This launches a preview of the channel’s conversation, giving you the chance to make a final decision before committing to join the channel.
  4. Click ‘Join Channel’ to enter the conversation. 

There’s a lot of channels to sort through, so you can also ‘Search Channels’ for any terms that are relevant to you (e.g “CEDA” or “Comms”).