In an era of hyper-communication, chat management and organization are critical to effective enterprise communication.
To de-clutter instant messaging channels, threaded messaging allows individuals to take a public conversation offline into a more private discussion without pinging the rest of the group.
According to a study presented at the AAAI Conference on Web and Social Media, there is a dramatic increase in discussion responses when using threaded messaging. Using a thread, employees feel less intimidated to ask questions or provide insight when a thread is between fewer people.
Using threaded messaging in private messages, group chats, and topic channels, your enterprise will encourage more cohesive collaboration and innovation.
When Threaded Messaging Is Effective
Threaded messaging is the most effective when it allows employees to clarify information without disrupting the broader group discussion flow. By allowing multiple discussions to stem from a more general topic, threads can simultaneously involve specific individuals who are relevant to the subtopic. This enables communication and innovation to grow without derailing or flooding the larger group discussion.
By allowing a person to start a thread with specific individuals, it can sideline conversations to:
- Ask a question related to the topic
- Respond to a question or give feedback on a subtopic
Threaded messaging also encourages effective asynchronous communication where messages and threads do not require an immediate response. By eliminating turn-taking & time constraints, individuals can contribute to threads and channels when it is convenient for them. This way, individuals can ask questions or address problems as they arise and are relevant to their workflow rather than just the discussion.
By starting threads to earlier posts, individuals can correctly address previous responses without interrupting the current conversation. This effectively creates a categorized environment for individuals to collaborate and innovate without overloading employees with all the sideline conversations.
When to Use Threads vs. New Messages in a Channel
Sometimes it can be challenging to decide if information should be shared in a thread with a couple of individuals, or to the group through a more prominent channel. The best way to determine when to use a thread or start a new message is to evaluate:
Is the channel currently busy with an active discussion?
If it is, you may want to start a thread so that you don’t disrupt the current discussion and stifle innovation. But if your response is entirely relevant to the discussion, then a new message to the group would be more prudent.
Are there many people on the channel, and is my response relevant to everyone?
Some channels can be company-wide or involve several members. These announcement channels are to inform internal teams of company-wide updates. These channels should have rules and regulations on who can post to these channels. These channels are for big-picture, strategic ideas, and project updates.
If this is the case, threads are the best solution to questions that may arise in these channels. Company blasts that aren’t relevant to everyone can become annoying and very disruptive.
Does your response require a lot of detail?
If your response requires highly detailed descriptions, you may want to put these messages in a thread if it would derail the broader discussion or doesn’t benefit the entire group. In some cases, detailed responses may be beneficial to the group discussion.
What Shouldn’t Go in a Discussion Thread
Some things shouldn’t be shared in a group channel even as a thread. Communication that is better as a text message or individual message would be:
- Social notes, images, and videos
- Private conversations
- Disagreements and congratulations
- Quick conversations that are not relevant to channel topics
Basically, channel communication and threaded messaging should be on topic and relevant to the individuals in the channel discussion. While you can sideline with individuals through threads, these subtopics should reflect the bigger topic discussion.
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Related: Direct Messaging Modular Features
Benefits of Threaded Messaging
There are many benefits for utilizing threaded messaging in your direct messaging or chat applications:
- Keep discussions organized, focused, and readable.
- Encourage open discussion without distracting others.
- Provide more clarity on specific message topics.
- Track and categorize conversations to provide logic and structure to a discussion.
- Keep the main channels clear of clutter.
- Share threads when you need to involve others.
- Sideline conversations, so they don’t distract from the main group discussions.
- Provides context of whom you are addressing.
- Allow team members to respond at their convenience.
In today’s work environment, threaded messaging is an essential feature of enterprise direct messaging and chat. By creating threads within messaging channels, users can easily understand the structure of a discussion, identify specific points that are nested within threads, as well as extend a discussion by adding a new message or thread without time constraints.
Utilize Threaded Messaging for More Effective Communication
Enterprises that enable threaded messaging create productive work environments for collaborative communication. It also encourages individuals to ask questions and participate in discussions where they might feel intimidated in larger channels. Threaded messaging also creates an organized environment for tracking and monitoring business communication.
In-App Chat‘s direct messaging enterprise solution includes customizable chat features like threaded messaging, user management, container security, E2E encryption, and image and video sharing for effective communication.
Do you need a turn-key, customizable, feature-rich Chat API with threaded messaging? In-App Chat offers Cloud-based and On-Premise Chat API solutions for effective enterprise communication. Contact us today!