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Workstreams task Management support

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Creating tasks

It’s unbelievably easy to create tasks in both the Slack app and the web app. The steps below show you how using the same example of adding the task Recruit Programmers to the #recruit-development-team channel.

Creating a task in the Workstreams Slack app

  1. Go to the channel where you want to add a task. For example, #recruit-development-team.
  2. Type /plan Recruit Programmers.
  3. Press Enter and the Recruit Programmers task is created. The Workstreams bot shows the task details in the channel and sets an initial status of planned.
  4. Click the Edit button to add a Due Date or a Description. Use the Set Status, Assign to or Labels drop-downs to further modify the task.
  5. Click the Recruit Programmers hyperlink to jump to it in the web app where you can also modify task details.

TIP--With the Slack app, you can create tasks within a discussion. So your brainstorming sessions end up with action items! For example, a team member indicates that a Project Manager also needs to be recruited for the team. Just type /plan Recruit Project Manager and the first step towards hiring is in your plan. Next, type /plan Interview Project Manager and then /plan Send Offer to Project Manager and then /plan Hire Project Manager and all four steps of your plan are in place.

Creating a task in the Workstreams web app

  1. Locate the channel on your Kanban board where you want to add a task. For example, #recruit-development-team.
  2. Click the blue + icon on the far-right side of the channel window.
  3. In the Create a task dialog that displays, type Recruit Programmers.
  4. Press the Save button and the Recruit Programmers task displays on the board.
  5. Click the triple-dot icon in the upper-right corner of the task box to edit the task, set the status, assign a resource, assign a due date, set up or assign a label, and more.
  6. Open Slack and you see the Workstreams bot, which tells the channel you just created the Recruit Programmers task. A New Thread also appears detailing the addition of the task.

Editing tasks

It’s even easier to edit tasks and you can do so in either the Slack app or the web app.

Editing a task in the Workstreams Slack app

  1. Go to the channel where you want to edit a task.
  2. Type /tasks.
  3. Select the task you want to edit from the drop-down list. For example, Recruit Programmers.
  4. The task details display along with various buttons and drop-downs that let you modify the task.
  5. Click the Edit button to edit the task.
  6. Edit the Title, Due Date or Description in the popup dialog. For example, you could type "We require both Java and Swift programmers for our project" in the Description.
  7. Press the Save button when you are done.

TIP--If you prefer to edit the task in the Kanban board, click the Recruit Programmers hyperlink to jump to the task in the web app where you can also edit it, as described in the steps below.

Editing a task in the Workstreams web app

  1. Select the channel where you want to edit a task.
  2. Click on the task box in the Kanban board and Add description displays.
  3. Click Add description.
  4. Type: "We require both Java and Swift programmers for our project".
  5. To edit the task some more, click the triple-dot icon in the upper-right corner of the task box and a wide variety of options appear, including Edit.
  6. Click Edit to further edit the task.

Adding due dates

Due dates are a Premium feature but they are totally worth it! Assign deadlines to all your most important tasks to ensure you’re not just on schedule, but ahead of schedule.

Adding due dates in the Workstreams Slack app

  1. Go to the channel where you want to edit a task.
  2. Type /tasks and then select the task from the drop-down.
  3. Click the Edit button to edit the task.
  4. Add a Due Date in the format: MM/DD/YY. For example, if the task needs to be completed by the end of the week, which is Friday May 18, 2018, type 05/18/18.
  5. Press the Save button.

TIP--Once again, a fantastic feature of the Slack app is that you can modify tasks immediately after the conversation takes place in the channel. For example: Team Member 1: We really need a User Guide for the product?! You: Can anyone on the team write it? Team Member 2: Not me. Team Member 3: No way. I write code. Not user Guides. Team Member 2: We have to hire a tech writer! And soon. We have to have them on board by end of week!! You: /plan Hire Technical Writer. And then you can just edit the due date so that it is the end of the week. Here’s how you do that in the web app...

Adding due dates in the Workstreams web app

  1. Select the channel where you want to edit a task.
  2. Click on the task box in the Kanban board.
  3. Click the triple-dot icon in the upper-right corner of the task box.
  4. Click the Set Due Date… drop-down option.
  5. You see some preset dates, such as End of Week.
  6. Using the same example as above, this is exactly what you want, so select End of Week.
  7. The due date displays in a small yellow rectangle inside the task box. Fri May 18 in our example.

Assigning tasks to team members

Your entire team is already set up in Slack, so it takes minutes to assign them to tasks. Plus, it makes a whole lot of sense to assign a task as you are discussing it. For example, when you are discussing the recruiting of a Project Manager, you can request that the team member who made the suggestion take on the task. If they agree, then you can just assign the task to them right there in the Slack channel, immediately after you create it.

Assigning tasks in the Workstreams Slack app

  1. Go to the channel where you want to edit a task.
  2. Type /tasks.
  3. Select Recruit Project Manager from the drop-down.
  4. Click the Assign to drop-down. All members of the channel display.
  5. Select the team member to which you want to assign the task.

Assigning tasks in the Workstreams web app

  1. Select the channel where you want to edit a task.
  2. Click on the task box in the Kanban board. For example, Recruit Project Manager.
  3. Click the triple-dot icon in the upper-right corner of the task box.
  4. Click the Assign to… drop-down option and your team members display, along with their photo from slack.
  5. Select the team member from the list to which you want to assign the task and their photo displays in the upper-left corner of the task box, indicating that they are now assigned to the task.

Setting up and Using Labels

We have seen how you can quickly and easily set up and manage all your tasks and all your projects. To analyze and track tasks across projects, you can use labels. Labels are color-coded task groupings that enable you to quickly and visually identify types of tasks in your Kanban board.

Even more powerful, a label can be associated with a Goal, and Goals enable you to track your progress with Progress Bars and Burndown Charts. More about this awesome feature shortly! For now, just keep in mind that if you carefully set up your labels you can then use them as Goals.

Setting up a Label in the Workstreams Slack app

  1. Go to the channel where you want to add a label to a task
  2. Type /tasks.
  3. Select Recruit Project Manager from the drop-down.
  4. Click the Label drop-down to see a list of labels.
  5. Click Add Label. ***
  6. Type Recruiting.

Setting up a label in the Workstreams web app

  1. Go to the channel where you want to edit a task.
  2. Click on the task box in the Kanban board. For example, Recruit Programmers.
  3. Click the triple-dot icon in the upper-right corner of the task box.
  4. Click the Apply Labels… drop-down option.
  5. Type: Recruiting.
  6. It does not yet exist, so select +Create New Label. The label displays in the drop-down and a color is automatically assigned to the label.
  7. Locate any other tasks to which you want to assign this label. For example, Recruit Project Manager.
  8. Click the triple-dot icon in the upper-right corner of the task box.
  9. Click the Apply Labels… drop-down option.
  10. Select the Recruiting label. Both recruiting tasks are now assigned to the Recruiting label.

Filtering on a label in the Workstreams web app

  1. To filter on the label that you just created, type label:Recruiting in the Type to filter field in the upper-right corner of the window.
  2. Only tasks with the Recruiting label display on the Kanban board.

Setting up and Using Goals

We just looked at how you can color-code and group tasks using a label. We looked at the example of setting up a Recruiting label. Now, let’s use this label to create a goal: Complete Recruiting. All the recruiting in the world doesn’t add up to much unless you achieve this goal.

So Goals are a great way to organize and track all your tasks related to a specific objective. And you can use the powerfully visual Progress Bar and Goal Burndown Charts to track the progress of your goals. More about this later. First, let’s set up a Goal and this can only be done in the web app.

Setting up goals in the Workstreams web app

  1. Click Goals in the upper-right corner of the window, and the Goals drawer opens.
  2. Click + Create New Goal.
  3. Type the title for your new goal. For example, Complete Recruiting
  4. Type a description. For example, It is crucial we recruit great people for our team by the end of the week, so that we can hire them next week.
  5. Click in the Due Date entry field to display a calendar.
  6. Select May 18th on the calendar.
  7. Select the Recruiting label from the drop-down list. Note: You cannot change a label 12 hours after setting it up. This restriction is necessary so analytics around progress can be properly tracked.
  8. Select a Reporting Channel where you want the goal tracking to display.

TIP--Typically, you can report the progress on goals to the channel with the related tasks, #recruit-development-team in our example. However, you can also set up a new channel in which to display the results. For example, if you only want a select group of managers to see the reporting you could set up a new channel: #recruiting-reports.

Attaching files to tasks

Yet another fantastic feature of Workstreams is the ability to attach files. For example, you might have a scanned image of a whiteboard that lists the qualifications you are looking for in the programmers that you are recruiting. You can attach a file in two easy ways:

Attaching files in the Workstreams Slack app

  1. Go to the channel where you want to edit a task.
  2. Drop the WhiteboardQualifications.png file into the Slack channel.
  3. Click the More actions button and select Attach to task option.
  4. Select Recruit Project Programmers from the drop-down

Or alternatively:

  1. Go to the channel where your task is
  2. Click Reply to thread
  3. Simply upload the WhiteboardQualifications.png file in the thread. Easy!

Archiving tasks

We are quite sure you will use Workstreams to create hundreds, if not thousands, of tasks. So archiving is another great features that allows you to move historical items out of your Kanban board to ensure that your overall view remains pristine and uncluttered.

Archiving tasks in the Workstreams Slack app

  1. Go to the channel where you want to edit a task.
  2. Type /tasks.
  3. Select Recruit Programmers from the drop-down.
  4. Click the Archive button. A dialog displays asking you to confirm your decision.
  5. Click the Yes button.

Archiving tasks in the Workstreams Web app

  1. Select the channel where you want to edit a task.
  2. Click on the task box in the Kanban board. For example, Recruit Programmers.
  3. Click the triple-dot icon in the upper-right corner of the task box.
  4. Click the Archive option. A dialog displays asking you to confirm your decision.
  5. Click the Archive button.