31 January 2017
For a month now, I’ve been working from home. I dial into meetings with the team, and pair with team mates remotely.
It hasn’t felt like I’ve been far away from the team though. Thank God for Slack! I’ve been able to chat with my fellow developers every time I’ve wanted help. I call out on the channel, and whoever is available gets back to me instantly. I can reach out to the testers on their channel, and talk about the bugs they’d like me to look into. I don’t look at our CD tool at all! I’ve set up notifications for broken builds and get alerts from our monitoring tool. I don’t miss the chatter from the office – all the team banter is on our Slack channels. (I’ve muted our lunch train channel though – I don’t want to know what good food I’m missing out on!). Best of all, I’ve almost never had to check my email!
The latest addition to our Slack team is the integration with Mingle. This is a powerful partnership! I’m now opening up Mingle on my browser far fewer times each day. My project manager no longer has to hound me to make updates to the cards I’m assigned to on Mingle. A couple of quick commands on Slack, and I’m all set.
Take our morning standup, for instance. I’m not by the physical wall, so the team has had to find other ways to involve me. We talk over a Slack call in our team channel. As we’re chatting, we pull up cards we want from Mingle – without actually opening Mingle!
We sign up for work soon after standup. I hit the Sign Up button on the card I’d like to work on, and everyone does the same. It takes us seconds to be all signed up and ready to go!
Through the day, we check in on the team channel for updates and discussions. Occasionally, testers find bugs they’d like us to discuss. We create bug cards quickly using the /addcard command, and file it away for follow-up.
Occasionally, another developer asks for my help. They send me the card number of the story they’re working on. I quickly run the /show command to bring up details of the card, so I can help them right away.
When I’d like to get one or a pair of my teammates to take on my task, I quickly assign them to the card. All I need is the card number and their Slack name.
We use Mingle’s murmurs a lot to leave comments on cards. I like that I’m now notified every time someone mentions me in a murmur. It gets my attention right away, and I don’t miss them any more.
I can also post murmurs straight onto cards from Slack, and mention my teammates to draw their attention to the card too. Works great!
I can’t wait to see what else the Mingle + Slack integration has in store. If I could make status changes on cards from Slack, that would be the icing on the cake!