Create guidelines for channel names

Creating guidelines for naming channels is one of the best ways to keep your workspace organized. By using clear, predictable guidelines, members are more likely to ask questions in the right places, connect with the right people, and feel empowered to work efficiently in Slack.

Best practices for naming channels

  • Start with broad channel topics and get more specific as needed
  • Create and share a guide for naming channels with your workspace
  • Encourage all members to stay on-topic

 

Establish naming guidelines 

Start with broad channels

Organizing your workspace into basic categories your team already knows will help keep everyone on the same page. Add new channels named for major topics most members are familiar with:

  • Departments (e.g. #design, #marketing, #finance, etc.)
  • Office locations (e.g. #sf, #paris, #tokyo, etc.)

We suggest renaming the #general channel to something like #announcements. Save this channel for workspace-wide messages and alerts.

The #random channel is just that — use it for anything you’d like!

Note: Visit Rename a channel to learn how to change a channel's name.


Create specific channels

Consider using a set of standard prefixes to keep channel names consistent and descriptive. Here are a few of our favorites:

help- To ask questions or find information.
Example: #help-benefits, #help-finance, #help-it
team- For groups to coordinate team-related topics and activities.
Example: #team-design, #team-support, #team-ops, #team-sales
feat- or proj-  For cross-functional teams working together. 
Example: #feat-mobileapp, 
#proj-café-rebuild, #proj-logo-rebrand 

 


Build and expand

As your workspace grows, it can get harder to keep channels focused and productive. Remember to keep channels broad, and only to add specific ones as needs arise.

For example, when your #sales channel gets too crowded with conversations, add new channels like #sales-training to plan for new hires, #sales-leads to track contacts, and so on!

Tip: Add a channel topic and purpose to let people know what they can expect to find in a channel.

 

Document the guidelines 

Once you’ve tailored your channel naming system, it’s time to share it! This will help encourage consistency and efficiency amongst your members. 📝

Creating a post in Slack is a great way to share this type of information:  

  • Share the post in your channel for workspace-wide messages.
  • Pin the post in appropriate channels for easy reference.
  • Send the post to new hires and guests so they can navigate your workspace.
  • Let others edit the post so anyone can add new prefixes and guidelines. 

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Keep conversations relevant

To keep things organized, it’s important that members have conversations in the right places. (Remember to include channels just for fun or social topics!) 


How to redirect 

If a conversation is best had in a different channel, find a courteous way to let members know. Designate an emoji (or create a custom one) that signals members to move a discussion.

Here's an example using the 🔀  twisted arrows emoji to redirect conversations: 

redirect.png

Note: When you need to move a discussion, share your message in the new channel. 


Manage existing channels

Things change: projects are renamed, shelved for another day, or canceled entirely. Here's how to keep your channels organized: 

Note: You can't create folders or sub-channels, but if you're on a paid workspace, prefixes can help organize your channel list if your sidebar is set to sort alphabetically.   


Learn more

Channels are where the magic happens in Slack. Consistent names will go a long way in keeping your workspace organized. Here are some additional resources:

 

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