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10.01.2022 Organisation & processes

Our favourite keyboard shortcuts for Slack

Our favourite keyboard shortcuts for Slack

Slack is supposed to make our lives easier at work. But sometimes there are too many messages coming in, with notifications going off left and right, and different teams pinging you in all those countless channels you’re a part of. 

There are faster ways to use Slack. And once you’ve used these shortcuts a couple of times it will become like second nature for you to use a shortcut instead of doing things the manual way. 

There are a huge amount of keyboard shortcuts for Slack, and we’ve scrolled through them a lot ourselves. So we thought of giving you a more comprehensive list of our favourite (most useful) shortcuts for Slack below.

We’ve included our top ten time savers:

Tip: In case you didn’t know, you can see the full list of Slack shortcuts within the Slack app by clicking Command + / on Mac, or Ctrl + / on Windows.

Set your status

Setting your status is something that we do here at JOIN several times a day. It’s one of our favourites because it’s so simple, but so useful.

You can set your status to essentially whatever you like. Out for lunch, walking the dog, on the way to the office, out for a walk, focus time, in a meeting, on a call, coffee break, remote working, etc.

If you’d like to see the emoji library we use most here at JOIN, head over to our article on emojis and polls

Instead of going manually to your profile and then updating status, you can use this shortcut. If you’re anything like us, it will become one of your most-used shortcuts at work:

Mac Windows
Shift + Command + Y Ctrl + Shift + Y 


Upload a file

Uploading a file in Slack makes it that little bit easier to access things and keep track of everything shared. 

There’s something satisfying about not having to use more than a few apps during the day to get all of your work done. So, if you have documents, images, e-books, spreadsheet files, or presentations, you can use this shortcut to access them easily. 

Slack displays your last few downloads for even easier access, too.


Mac Windows
Command + U Ctrl + U


View all downloaded files

I dread to think about the number of hours I’ve spent during my professional life just simply trying to locate that rogue document. I swear I had it in that file, but it’s definitely disappeared forever (and it certainly was my computer’s mistake and not mine).

Thank goodness for the ‘view all downloaded files’ shortcut so that I can stop asking the same people over and over to resend that file they sent last week.


Mac Windows
Shift + Command + J Ctrl + Shift + J 


Create a snippet

If you’re a programmer, or working with developers, you should find the ‘create a snippet’ shortcut really useful. 

It allows our developers to discuss best practices for coding, as well as finding and fixing bugs and offering suggestions and improvements to sections of code without editing.


Mac Windows
Shift + Command + Enter Ctrl + Shift + Enter


It’s easy to get lost in conversations. So being able to search within one to find what you’re looking for can save you all that annoying time scrolling back through the messages wondering ‘what did they say about that project in the end?’ 

This is one of the most useful shortcuts for me as it’s difficult to keep track when so much is going on. Especially within a fast-paced startup environment that changes all the time and where many decisions are being made at once.

I find it really easy to tap my little Search Conversation shortcut, and just remember one or two keywords, so I can stop wracking my brain and get down to the action plans.


Mac Windows
Command + F Ctrl + F

Toggle mute on a Slack call

If you’re using Slack calls to catch up with remote workers or external colleagues then you’ll want to be able to quickly toggle your mute button so that no one becomes distracted by the background noise.


Mac Windows


Jump to next unread DM or channel 

This shortcut will make it that tiny bit faster to navigate Slack in general.

If your Slack is consistently busy with questions and conversations from many different people and channels, it would be great to be able to jump around those conversations quicker. This keyboard shortcut will become second nature to you.


Mac Windows
Options + Shift + Down Alt + Shift + Down


Mark all messages as read

Now, this shortcut isn’t one of our best practices, but it’s definitely useful in some situations. Maybe you’ve had a conversation with someone in person, so you don’t need to read the messages in Slack. 

Maybe you’ve been on vacation, in which case it’s much easier to have an update meeting, instead of scrolling through hundreds of messages to catch up. 

Marking all messages as read made the list because it’s just simply so much faster than opening all the channels individually to mark a message as read.


Mac Windows
Shift + Esc Shift + Esc


Pin or unpin a message 

Pinning a message makes navigating back through the forest of messages, files and important information a breeze. Once you’ve pinned a message to a channel with the shortcut, you can get an overview of all the pinned messages per channel.

Think you’re definitely going to forget that spreadsheet link? Pin the message and get easy access later.

Note that to use this shortcut, you first need to hover over the three dots for ‘more options’ in the message you want to pin.


Mac Windows


Create a reminder about a message

Reminders serve a similar purpose as pinning a message. It gives you an opportunity to catch up on the things you missed at a more convenient time. 

To do this, go to the message that you’d like to be reminded about, click on the three dots, and scroll to ‘create a reminder about this message’. You can then press ‘M’ to set a custom reminder time.


Mac Windows


Slack is making it much faster for us to communicate with each other at work, and shortcuts just make our work lives that tiny bit easier. 

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