EMS announces full availability of Slack Bridging

January 20, 2021

Channel your excitement!

Element Matrix Services (EMS), our Matrix hosting platform, is formally launching Slack Bridging!

Having soft-launched Slack Bridging last year, EMS already provides bridges to Slack for a wide range of customers and thousands of simultaneous users.

Fully managed Slack Bridging lets EMS customers bring their Slack users straight into the open Matrix network, meaning organisations can:

  • Knock through Slack’s walled garden to bring internal communities together
  • Let users stay in Slack, even when messaging those outside of it
  • Save serious $$$ by taking advantage of the Matrix open network

EMS Slack Bridging is powered by matrix-appservice-slack, the open source Slack bridge written originally by the core Matrix team with thanks to many key contributions from the wider Matrix community.

The EU’s Digital Markets Act calls for exactly this type of silo-busting interoperability to ensure users are not forced, or locked, into a particular service or have limited options for switching to alternative services.

Bridging internal stakeholder and communities

EMS Slack Bridging brings internal communities together, rather than leaving them segmented in siloes throughout an organisation.

Indeed EMS recently established its first dual-bridge environment for a customer, bringing together different communities within a single organisation. The deployment sees the Matrix-based EMS environment connecting more than 500 Slack users with thousands of IRC users.

“EMS and Matrix are the glue that brings communities together,” says Rick Lewis, VP, Element Matrix Services. “The beauty is that everyone gets to stay in the app they are used to; the whole organisation gets connected, but no one has to adapt to a new front-end.”

Faster, cheaper connectivity with external parties

Slack Bridging brings considerable benefits for organisations that use it to collaborate with external parties. Perhaps most conveniently, it enables a Slack-based organisation to connect with ecosystem partners that don’t use Slack (and vice versa).

The open Matrix network also makes connectivity as universal as email, which empowers end-users to simply connect directly when collaborating with external partners.

And while there is a cost for the EMS bridge itself, it supports up to 20 bridged rooms with unlimited conversation which is a far more cost effective way of connecting people across an ecosystem.  

In short, imagine Slack Connect but without:

  • Additional admin burden of constant approval
  • Hoping your various external partners are also locked into Slack
  • No connection limits and significant $$$ savings

Winning hearts and minds

Slack Bridging is the ‘big one’ for many organisations wanting to move to Matrix. “Slack is often in-situ with groups or individuals who are in a position to resist attempts to modernise,” says Rick Lewis, VP, Element Matrix Services. “Slack Bridging lets those people stay in Slack, while the rest of the organisation gets to benefit from a more powerful and all-inclusive messaging and collaboration platform.”

While Slack Bridging is intended to let Slack users remain in the app, many Slack Bridging customers have taken the opportunity to move part of their workforce directly from Slack to Element using the new Slack Migration Wizard.

For those facing frustrating conversations to explain the virtues of Matrix and Element, there is a straightforward guide that explains the benefits of decentralised, data sovereign messaging available here.

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