Slack Beats Out Microsoft, Selected By IBM As Exclusive Chat App

Slack was recently selected by IBM to serve as its exclusive chat app for its more than 350,000 employees. The move was seen a huge win; Slack had to compete with none other than Microsoft Teams -- and all of the resources that come with it -- before finally coming out on top.

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What this means for IBM is that it has taken yet another step forward in its CEO's plan to modernize its operations in entirety, which involves adapting to the 21st century's ways of getting work done. As for Slack, the win proves that it can scale up successfully to the point of being able to support one of the largest global corporations.

Half a decade in beta

It is said that IBM's decision to choose Slack over Microsoft Teams for its companywide communications took at least about half a decade before becoming official. There are reports that the tech giant first started experimenting with the chat app back in 2016, while others state that some teams in IBM first discovered it as early as 2014.

According to Slack CEO Stewart Butterfield, it's the kind of thing that will allow them to keep pushing forward.

"Going wall to wall in IBM -- it's basically the maximum scale that there is," said Butterfield in a statement offered to Business Insider. It shows with great certainty that Slack will work for literally the world's largest organizations.

The simple reason for the decision

IBM's Konrad Lagard, the manager in charge of the companywide transition to Slack, shared that the whole move started due to the simple fact that their employees liked the chat app.

"They started explaining what they were doing and how they were using Slack to communicate," he explained. "It was bringing transparency to conversations and helping this team, which was very complex, as we were moving to cloud, continuous delivery, shipping code all the time, it made their work move faster."

Slack may have scored a huge win with this move from IBM, but it still has a long way to go to catch up to its main rival Microsoft Teams. It now trails behind the MS Office-integrated platform by nearly 10 million users. It goes to show that simply being able to scale is not enough. But standing on the shoulders of a giant like IBM will surely help in slaying any Goliath.