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The 13 Free Slack Apps That Will Make Your Team Even More Productive

Emily Irish
Emily Irish / December 7, 2017

Slack is a natural hub for many businesses, thanks to its powerful chat tools—but chat alone isn't enough to get things done. For all those extra features to take action on your conversations and make decisions without opening another program or tab, you need Slack's apps.

These Slack add-ons add extra features to the Slack chat you already know and love. There are hundreds of Slack apps for all kinds of purposes, from managing your calendar to getting reminders to get up and stretch your legs. The most interesting ones are the free Slack apps that convert Slack into the hub for your business. Instead of switching between Slack and other apps, these tools let you do everything from basic HR organization to team-building and project management right inside Slack.

To select these apps, we combed the Slack directory, searching for apps that added a feature that couldn’t be easily duplicated natively in Slack. To meet the criteria for this article, each app needed to be useful across a broad range of team and company types, in addition to being free. Here are our favorites.

The Best Free Slack Apps

Icon:  App Best for
Arc logo Arc Google Analytics summaries in Slack
Meekan logo Meekan Schedule meetings with teammates effortlessly from Slack
TimeBot logo TimeBot Manage vacation time, sick leave, and holidays
BusyBot logo BusyBot Keep track of team tasks and reminders
BusyOn logo BusyOn Track task and activity progress for your team
Kyer logo Kyber Manage projects, assign tasks, organize meetings, add to-dos
Must-Read logo Must-Read Make sure your most important Slack messages are read by your team
Donut logo Donut Get to know your co-workers better
Icebreakers logo Icebreakers Introduce new team members
Lunch Train logo Lunch Train Plan team lunches with ease
Flexbot logo Flexbot Encourage healthy habits, automatically
GoodRipple logo GoodRipple Spread happiness throughout your company
StopBreatheThink logo Stop, Breathe & Think Practice mindfulness at work
Zapier logo Zapier Build your own Slack bot with no coding knowledge required

Slack Apps for Business Management

Slack can be an effective way to keep tabs on the pulse of your business. Beyond updates from your team, these apps put analytics, support, and HR tools right into your Slack workflow.

Arc

Google Analytics summaries in Slack

Arc Slack app summary

Google Analytics provides some of the most important data about your business's website performance, but it's difficult to check daily—and far easier to forget to check at all. Arc solves this problem by generating a daily summary of your key Google Analytics metrics and sharing it in Slack.

Connect as many Google Analytics accounts as you want, then define what information you want added to your summary. Arc will then track trends in your data and point these out to you—such as whether you're getting more or fewer site visitors this month versus last month. Set up daily, weekly, or monthly summaries from your Arc dashboard to regularly check on the health of your business, then share them automatically with specific teammates or channels, or with the company at large, depending on your settings.

Better yet, Arc describes your stats in plain language, such as "your audience increased and they were more engaged vs. last month." This way, your whole team and not just your data scientists can keep their pulse on the health of your key performance metrics.

Arc Price: free for one summary, unlimited connected Google accounts, and unlimited Slack channels; from $9/month Paid plan, with 5 summaries and additional analytics data

Meekan

Schedule meetings with teammates effortlessly from Slack

Meekan Slack app

Slack is where you communicate with your team, manage files, and run calls. So why not schedule your meetings in Slack too? Instead of turning to email or trying to find overlapping availability for four different coworkers, simply invite the Meekan app to any channel, then start your message with meekan to get the ball rolling.

Meekan understands human-readable requests, such as "Meekan, I need to meet with @dscrute @jhalpert and @abernard about sales stats next week." Meekan will then analyze each person's calendar to find the ideal meeting time, then suggest the best times in a Slack thread beneath the original message.

Once a few times are suggested, attendees simply vote on which time works best. When the votes are in, the command book it will confirm the meeting time with the most votes and automatically send everyone an invitation. You can even accept or decline meeting invites from Slack or reschedule them. All you need to do is integrate Meekan with your calendar of choice and you can run the rest of your scheduling from Slack.

TimeBot

Manage vacation time, sick leave, and holidays

TimeBot Slack app screenshot

Time off, holidays, sick leave, and out-of-office reminders…These are enough trouble when you're just managing it for yourself, let alone your entire company or team. TimeBot saves your sanity by letting employees request time off (or notify of sickness) within Slack and automatically log the time off in one step.

Employees need only type in an OOO request command to TimeBot, then fill out a few questions, such as the type of time off requested (vacation, sick leave, holiday), dates requested, and any additional notes. It's the same way you'd normally ask your boss about time off in Slack—only this time, you don't also have to add the time to a calendar.

Managers and administrators can view requests from their teams and approve within Slack. TimeBot will then alert managers if other team members are scheduled to be OOO that day to help with scheduling. Have a global or distributed team? TimeBot includes holiday reminders for over 100 countries, so you don't have to worry about miscommunication over holiday time with employees across the world.

Slack Apps for Project and Task Management

You likely already have a project management tool or to-do list app to plan your work and keep your team on track. But it's still easy to forget about important tasks when you don't check your to-do list. A Slack to-do list app can help. Maybe you simply need a quick project update or a reminder on a task that's due soon. Instead of switching to another app, try one of these handy Slack apps:

BusyBot

Keep track of team tasks and reminders

BusyBot Slack app screenshot

BusyBot offers you the convenience of Slack reminders with the functionality of a fully-fledged task list. Invite @busybot to any channel, then simply add the command /busybot to any message to create a task for yourself or a colleague.

You then have two options for viewing your tasks. You can view and edit basic task details and deadlines, and complete tasks in Slack under the BusyBot app. If you want more details and management control over your tasks, pull up your BusyBot dashboard (viewable in the right half of the above screenshot). This dashboard mirrors your Slack organization so you can view tasks by the channel in which they were created. This is especially useful for Slack channels dedicated to a particular project.

From this dashboard, you can manage every task you created in Slack in a handy "card" format. Add more details via the card's description, comment on the task, manage due dates and assignees, or add functions like labels, attachments, and (for Pro users) checklists and subtasks. BusyBot will automatically remind you in Slack of any tasks you created or are assigned, so you can manage your daily task list within Slack.

BusyBot Pricing: Free for all core features; $49/month Starter plan for subtasks, checklists, and a team calendar

BusyOn

Track task and activity progress for your team

BusyOn Slack app screenshot

Keeping track of what everyone's working on can be difficult, especially if your team is distributed across several time zones. So instead of trying to manage tasks through a bunch of direct messages, just use the BusyOn Slack app.

BusyOn gives team managers real-time reports about their team. Team members can update what they're working on with a simple /busyon xyz task message in Slack. These updates then go to the BusyOn dashboard, as well as to the designated channel.

Managers can then review and filter through activity logs and run reports via the BusyOn dashboard, or simply have BusyOn email you a daily report with the updates from all your team members. The dashboard also gives you a general overview of task analytics, to help you keep your eye on the big picture of your team's productivity.

Kyber

Manage projects, assign tasks, organize meetings, add to-dos

Kyber Slack app screenshot

If Slack is your primary communication tool, you likely get dozens of task requests or project updates throughout the week. If you're anything like me, you find these requests disruptive—after all, if you don't take care of that right away, you'll forget, right?

Kyber solves this problem intelligently without taking you away from Slack. Within this Slack app, you can create and assign tasks, project task lists, and even schedule meetings, all with just a few keystrokes.

Need something from your coworker or direct report? Don't risk your request getting lost in the noise—directly assign them a task. They'll get the message as a task, and you'll be notified when they mark that task as completed.

If you're working on a project within a channel, you can create shared project task lists with attachments, sub-tasks, and team assignments—all visible to the entire channel, so your project team can keep track of everything.

Scheduling meetings is now as easy as delivering a command via /meet—Kyber will keep you up to date on replies to your meeting invitations, and will automatically sync appointments with your calendar of choice.

Best of all, Kyber compiles all direct tasks, project tasks, and meetings into a personal task list that is updated daily so you'll never miss an important Slack task again.

@Must-Read

Make sure your most important Slack messages are read by your team

Must-Read Slack app screenshot

If you've ever shared an important message in Slack only to have that request seemingly lost to the void among other ongoing conversations, you are far from alone. @Must-Read solves this problem by letting you flag outgoing Slack messages as urgent and delivering a digest of all your need-to-read messages.

Just have your team mention @must-read in any message that your team really needs to see. @Must-Read then adds to a customized daily must-read list for everyone on your team. Each participant can then browse all these messages in one batch so you don't have to waste time digging through Slack to find can't-miss messages.

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