userguide

Table of Contents

NextPlane App Users Guide for Slack Federation


Why NextPlane App

Not everyone is on Slack. Increasingly your colleagues, inside and outside your enterprise, can be on other collaboration platforms such as Microsoft Teams or Cisco Webex. Others may be on legacy platforms such as Microsoft Skype for Business.

The nextplane App lets you connect with colleagues that are on different platforms. You can stay on Slack and be able to:

  • Invite and add each other as contacts
  • Send direct messages with rich text, GIFs, and emoji reactions
  • Share presence status
  • View each other’s profiles
  • Find non-Slack conversations
  • Add non-Slack contacts to channels
  • Mute your direct messages with non-Slack contacts

To get started with the nextplane App, you need to add it to your Slack application. You will then be able to add non-Slack contacts to your workspace and start communicating with them.



Get Started with the NextPlane App

1. Add the NextPlane App to Your Workspace

Go to the following NextPlane page https://nextplane.net/slack and click Add to Slack .

  • If adding third-party applications is not restricted for your workspace, in the upper-right corner, check if the necessary workspace is selected, and then click Allow  to grant the required permissions.

    The granted permissions allow the nextplane App to access your Slack workspace, act on your behalf to invite external contacts, as well as notify you of the incoming requests from non-Slack contacts.

  • If adding third-party applications is restricted for your workspace and requires additional approval from the workspace App Manager, you will be redirected to the request approval page.

    By clicking Submit , you will request permission from the workspace App Manager to add the nextplane App to your workspace. Once your request is approved, you can add the nextplane App either from the Slack App Directory or by going back to the NextPlane page (https://nextplane.net/slack/) and clicking Add to Slack .

Once you have successfully added the nextplane App to your workspace, it appears in Apps.



2. Add a non-Slack Contact

Select the nextplane App and on the Home tab, click Add Contacts . Enter your non-Slack contact's user ID in the email address format, e.g., john.doe@gomaxine.com, and click Add .

Important! You can also add non-Slack contacts from any messaging area using the /nextplane invite + user ID slash command, e.g., /nextplane invite john.doe@gomaxine.com.





3. Wait for the Contact to Accept Your Invitation and Access Your Workspace

The nextplane App will notify you when the non-Slack contact accepts your invitation to connect.
When you receive the notification, click Confirm .

  • If adding third-party applications is not restricted for your workspace, in the upper-right corner, check if the necessary workspace is selected, and then click Allow  to grant the required permissions.

  • If adding third-party applications is restricted for your workspace, the request approval page opens.

    By clicking Submit , you will request permission from the workspace App Manager to add the non-Slack contact to your workspace. Once your request is approved, go back to your direct message with the nextplane App and
    click
    Confirm  > Allow .

The invited contact is added to your workspace and appears in Apps.



4. Start a Direct Message with a non-Slack Contact

Go to Apps and select the recently added non-Slack contact. In the message field, compose your message and
click Send message  or press Enter. This starts a direct conversation with your non-Slack contact.

Important! Due to security restrictions, direct messaging with non-Slack contacts is only possible on the workspace the nextplane App has been added to.



5. Find a Direct Message with a non-Slack Contact

If you lost your direct conversation with a non-Slack contact, type your contact's name in the search field at the top of Slack. From the search results, select the necessary contact and start messaging.



Key Features


1. Accept the Incoming Invitation from a non-Slack Contact

The nextplane App will notify you of any incoming requests from non-Slack contacts whose companies are a part of the NextPlane ConverseCloud Network. When you receive the notification, click Confirm .

  • If adding third-party applications is not restricted for your workspace, in the upper-right corner, check if the necessary workspace is selected, and then click Allow  to grant the required permissions.

  • If adding third-party applications is restricted for your workspace, the request approval page opens.

    By clicking Submit , you will request permission from the workspace App Manager to add the non-Slack contact to your workspace. Once your request is approved, go back to your direct message with the nextplane App and
    click
    Confirm  > Allow .

The non-Slack contact is added to your workspace and appears in Apps.



2. Find Your NextPlane ID for Slack

NextPlane ID for Slack is different from your email address. Your non-Slack contacts can invite you using this ID.

To find your NextPlane ID for Slack, do one of the following:

  • In any messaging area, type /nextplane help, and then click Send message  or press Enter.
    In the help message, under the instruction on how to find your NextPlane ID, click Show My ID .

  • In any messaging area, type /nextplane showmyid, and then click Send message  or press Enter.

The nextplane App sends you a direct message with your NextPlane ID for Slack. You can right-click it, copy, and then share it with non-Slack colleagues.



3. Add a non-Slack Contact to a Channel

To add a non-Slack contact, select the necessary channel* and do one of the following:

  • If you selected the newly-created channel, below the channel description, click Add an app .

  • If you selected the already existing channel, in the upper-right corner, click Show channel details , and then
    select More  > Add apps.

In the list of workspace apps, next to the app representing the necessary contact, click Add .

Wait for the non-Slack contact to accept your invitation to join the channel. Once they accept, all the channel members will be able to see their messages posted to the channel.

If you have the necessary permissions, you can remove non-Slack members from the channel.

* You can add non-Slack contacts to public channels only. Adding non-Slack contacts to private as well as shared channels will be available soon.



4. View a non-Slack Contact's Profile Details (V-Card)

Open the direct message with the necessary non-Slack contact and navigate to the About tab below the contact's name. Here, your contact's profile details are displayed.



5. Mute Direct Messages from a non-Slack Contact

To stop receiving notifications from a non-Slack contact, you can mute your direct messages.
Go to Apps, right-click your contact's name, and then select Mute conversation.

To unmute, right-click the contact and select Unmute conversation. You can also open the direct message with that contact and click Unmute  next to their name at the top.



6. Star Direct Messages from a non-Slack Contact

Not to lose important conversations with non-Slack contacts, you can star them.
Go to Apps, right-click your contact's name, and then select Star conversation.

To unstar, right-click the contact and select Unstar conversation. You can also open the direct message with that contact and click Star conversation  or Unstar conversation  next to their name at the top.

* NextPlane does not recommend using this feature with Slack Enterprise Grid.




Frequently Asked Questions

What commands can I use with the nextplane App?

With the nextplane App, you can use the following commands:

  • /nextplane invite – to invite non-Slack contacts
  • /nextplane showmyid – to display your NextPlane ID for Slack that you can share with non-Slack contacts
  • /nextplane help – to show help guidelines on how to use the nextplane App
  • /nextplane echo – to check the connectivity with the nextplane App

How can I add the nextplane App to a different workspace I belong to?
You need to repeat the process of adding the nextplane App for every workspace you belong to. You can select the necessary workspace in the Allow step when granting the App permission to access your workspace. The menu with workspaces you belong to is available in the upper-right corner.

Do I need to request permission to add the nextplane App?
Only if adding third-party apps is restricted for your workspace.

Do I need to request permission to add the nextplane App if my colleagues have already added it to our workspace?
No. If the nextplane App is once added to a workspace, you can find it in your workspace apps without having to go through the approval process.

Do I need to request permission to add non-Slack contacts to my workspace?
Only if adding third-party apps is restricted for your workspace.

Do I need to invite non-Slack contacts if my colleagues have already added them to my workspace?
No. If the non-Slack contact is once added to your workspace, you can find them by using search at the top of Slack. However, if you need to add that contact to another workspace you belong to, you will have to invite them and then confirm adding them to that workspace.

How can I add a non-Slack contact to a different workspace I belong to?
You need to confirm adding a non-Slack contact for every workspace you belong to. You can select the necessary workspace in the Allow step when granting the non-Slack contact permission to access your workspace. The menu with workspaces you belong to is available in the upper-right corner.

Can non-Slack contacts invite me from their client applications?
Yes, if their companies belong to the NextPlane ConverseCloud Network. To invite you, they need to have your
NextPlane ID for Slack.

What is my NextPlane ID for Slack?
NextPlane ID for Slack is different from your email address. Your non-Slack contacts can invite you using this ID.

How can I find my NextPlane ID for Slack?
You can find it by typing /nextplane help or /nextplane showmyid in the message field.

What if the contacts I need to invite do not belong to the NextPlane ConverseCloud Network?
Please provide them with the NextPlane contact details to establish federation between your companies.

What if I haven't received the confirmation that the invited contact accepted my invitation?
It might take some time for the non-Slack contact to accept your invitation. Please wait until the nextplane App confirms that your invitation is accepted. If the confirmation won't come, you can try to invite the contact once again. If the problem persists, get in touch with the NextPlane support team.

Why the invited contact does not appear in my Slack application after I click Allow on the request permission page?
The problem might be with the selected workspace. If you belong to multiple workspaces, please ensure that the right workspace is selected in the Allow step.

Can I see my non-Slack contacts' presence status?
Yes. Once the contact is on your workspace, you can see their presence status.

Can my non-Slack contacts see my profile?
Yes. Your profile details (V-card) become available for non-Slack contacts right after you add them to your workspace. Depending on the external platform capabilities, your non-Slack contacts will be able to view your profile details.

Why some of my non-Slack contacts' profiles are not available on the About tab?
The information displayed on the About tab largely depends on whether the external contact’s profile is filled out. It can also be limited by the external platform capabilities.

What does it mean if I receive the notification that the non-Slack contact is temporarily unavailable?
It means that direct messaging with the non-Slack contact you last communicated with is not available due to some technical issues on their side. Please try later, but if the problem persists, get in touch with the NextPlane support team.

Can I @mention my non-Slack contacts?
NextPlane is currently working to provide the possibility to @mention your non-Slack contacts.

Can non-Slack contacts participate in channels?
Yes. Your contacts can be invited to join and participate in any channel within your workspace.

Can I share files with my non-Slack contacts?
NextPlane is currently working to provide the possibility to share files with your non-Slack contacts.

Can I remove non-Slack contacts from my workspace?
No. Only Workspace Admins or App Managers can remove non-Slack contacts from your workspace.





Have trouble using the nextplane App? Get in touch with the NextPlane support team.
Need to subscribe? Contact NextPlane at sales@nextplane.net or book a free call with the NextPlane expert.

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