Slack

Slack and Webex Integration - Connect Slack and Webex

Learn to connect Slack and Webex efficiently using interoperability, workflows, webhooks, tubes, and Webex in Slack to boost productivity.
Dominic Kent
Dominic Kent is a content marketer specializing in unified communications and contact centers.
Connect Slack and Webex

Connecting Slack and Webex needs to be native, seamless, and simple to administer.

Standalone, both these apps have achieved this messaging nirvana.

To go one step further and connect these apps to work across platform, there are several ways to achieve this. Some better than others.

We often hear from customers trying to connect Slack and Webex to get the most out of each solution.

However, this often results in another chat app being introduced and limited or loss of functionality.

In this post, we highlight four ways to connect Slack and Webex…

1 - Connect Slack and Webex via workflows

Pros:

a. Workflow apps allow IT admins to quickly connect Webex and Slack. Generally, workflows only take a matter of minutes to set up. If you want to set up a one-off integration or trigger from one platform to the other, this is the ideal solution.

b. Most workflow engines come with intuitive interfaces so no back end coding is required to configure behavior between platforms.

Cons:

a. Integrations need to be set up one by one and are time-consuming if you need to connect entire organizations.

b. When triggers and actions need to be modified, integrations must be modified one by one.

c. Workflow software is limited by number of integrations.

d. Workflow triggers sometimes only work one way. Communications in Slack could make it to Webex but not vice versa.

Workflow setup for Slack and Webex triggers and actions

2 - Configure webhooks for Slack & Webex

Pros:

a. Webhooks are a simple and cost-effective method of joining Slack and Webex together for certain events. If the scenario resides in a single channel, webhooks provide a good solution to connecting Slack and Webex..

b. The Slack API enables you to “make it fancy” with advanced formatting. Interactive buttons and menus are available when using configuring webhooks in Slack.

Slack integration notification
Example of a Slack webhook

Cons:

a. Webhooks require lots of manual configuration. If you have multiple Slack channels or Webex spaces, this means configuring on a one-by-one basis.

b. Events triggered by webhooks in Webex are only near real-time. Whilst both Slack and Webex are persistent chat tools, the instant messaging experience is no longer instant in only “near real-time”.

Webex webhooks

News also broke in April 2020 when it was discovered some Slack webhooks has been exposed as potential phishing hooks.

Researchers said there are nearly 131,000 Slack webhook URLs available on the Internet.

3 - Connect Slack and Webex using tubes

Pros:

a. Tubes provide a two-way, real-time collaboration between Slack and Webex.

Cons:

a. In 2017, Slack introduced Shared Channels which provides the functionality that tubes were set out to do. Essentially, this is providing a federation solution so that two different companies using Slack can communicate on the same platform.

b. The company behind these tubes was acquired in 2017 and has been off the radar since.

c. Like webhooks, tubes require lots of manual configuration. If you have multiple Slack channels or Webex spaces, this means configuring on a one-by-one basis. You probably need a full -team sync that will add any new channels created in the future automatically to the other side too, so you don’t have to keep setting up more tubes

d. Tubes are considerably more expensive than any of the other methods mentioned in this post i.e. webhooks, workflows and even the solution below.

Alice opens a tube and connects Slack and Skype

4 - How do I use Webex in Slack?

The Cisco team knows you use several apps every day.

This is why Webex technology is adapting to work better with other tools.

Cisco even produced a video on how teams can combine Slack and Webex:

How do I use Webex in Slack (internal):

If you’re an internal colleague, you can use the Webex Meetings and Slack integration. This app lets you schedule and join Webex personal room meetings. You can also launch scheduled meetings within Slack.

To start, you’ll need an admin to install the Webex Meetings integration for Slack.

Search for Webex Meetings in the Slack app directory to install the app.

After installation, clicking the call button in Slack will launch a Webex meeting. You can also see a list of upcoming Webex meetings in the Meetings list.

Internal users can use shortcuts in Slack like /WebexSchedule List today to see upcoming meetings.  

Real-time notifications display when a meeting is about to begin.

The Webex Meetings app doesn’t support users outside of your business.

How do I use Webex in Slack (external)

Using Webex in Slack with external team members is more complicated.

One option is to set up a Slack shared channel.

Shared channels let two companies or organizations work together in Slack. Shared channel members can use apps and integrations to start calls.

If you and your external user have the Webex Meetings integration, you can use it for calls. This only works for Webex Meetings, not Webex.

To set up your shared channel:

  • Click the + icon next to Channels
  • Create a channel
  • Add a name and description
  • Tick the box for Share Outside (name)
  • Enter the email address you want to send the invite to
  • Click Finished

Invitation links to shared channels expire in 7 days.

Posted in:
Related stories
Industry News
Mio enables cross-platform collaboration through partnership with Google Workspace and SADA
Slack
How To Set Custom Status Messages In Slack For Enhanced Team Collaboration
Slack
The History Of Slack & Its Impact On Business Communication

Get the latest news from Mio in your inbox.

Join over 4,000 people who get collaboration tips once a month.