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Migrate to Webex Teams in 5 Simple Steps

Blog February 25, 2019
Remote working can be anywhere
Joe Beutler

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Migrate to Webex Teams in 5 Simple Steps

Migrate from Slack to Cisco Webex Teams

Planning to migrate from Slack to Webex Teams this year? You’re going to need a strategy.

Maybe you recently merged with a new company, and need to get everyone on the same platform.

Perhaps you already use Cisco Webex Teams as your UC client, and you want to stick with the same brand.

Whatever your situation, here’s what you need to do.

Cisco Webex Teams vs Slack
Enterprises often compare Webex Teams and Slack

Step 1: Get to know Cisco Webex Teams

Though best-known for its voice solutions, Cisco’s identity is evolving. Through acquisitions of Webex for meetings, Tandberg for video, and BroadSoft for VoIP, Cisco built a fantastic portfolio.

Cisco is continuously rolling out new capabilities for its collaboration tools. Recent innovations include quoting people’s messages, searching through content, and a new UI.

What’s more, at the end of 2018, Cisco announced interoperability with the Jabber client too.

That means that you can connect your on-premises tools with your cloud experience.

Even if you’re familiar with Cisco as a telecoms provider, it may take some time to figure out what you can accomplish with Teams.

Spend some time reading through resources like:

Cisco Webex Teams
Cisco Webex Teams

Step 2: Set up Webex Spaces

Migrating from Slack to Webex Teams means moving from channels to spaces.

In the Cisco Webex Teams app, all your work will take place in a “space” where you can share files, host video meetings and draw on digital whiteboards.

Before you begin migrating your employees into their new space, it’s worth understanding some keywords used by Cisco:

  • Direct Messaging: If you need to send a direct message to one person as you did in Slack, you can do this with direct messaging. You won’t be able to add other people into the conversation later, but you can create a different space.
  • Spaces: A Cisco Webex space is where groups of people collaborate together on a single topic. If your original intention for the space changes, you can move the “space” into a “team”. It then becomes a team space.
  • Team Spaces: These environments help to keep knowledge organized by placing multiple spaces under a common theme. Team spaces are intended for groups of people working on various projects over time. Every team needs at least one team space.

It may take some time for your employees to get used to the concept of spaces and team spaces.

Make sure that they have plenty of opportunities to test out the Webex application before they need to rely on it each day.

Cisco Webex Spaces
Webex Spaces and Slack channels must be synced when migrating

Step 3: Recreate your Slack knowledge base in Webex Teams

As you’ve been using Slack for a while, you’ll have shared crucial files and information in those channels.

Your spaces in Webex Teams can also keep track of all the files your users need to access.

People can post documents into the Space, and other employees can download them. Additionally, documents are saved securely on the cloud.

Before you can start using Webex Teams Spaces as your go-to knowledge base, you’ll need to migrate your files from Slack. To export data from Slack:

  • Go to Your Profile > Admin > Workplace Settings
  • Click on Import/Export Data and download all of your information
  • Your content will appear on your computer as a zip file
  • If it’s less than 2GB, you can export it straight to Webex Teams
  • If it’s larger than 2GB, you’ll need a document storage service like Dropbox
Slack knowledge base
Slack knowledge base

Step 4: Webex Meetings strategy

If your team is used to the free version of Slack, then they won’t be familiar with voice and video calls being part of their chat tool.

When you move to Webex Teams, you may also need to introduce employees to the concept of calling and setting up meetings via a single app.

Webex Teams allows you to schedule meetings in-app, share agendas, and connect to video calls with a single click.

The biggest issue is that if people don’t feel comfortable using the new tech, they might avoid taking part in meetings or sticking to their previous tools that you need to phase out.

Enterprise collaboration strategy often requires additional training.

This training should cover all the tools in Cisco Webex Teams, that were different for users in Slack.

For instance, you’ll need to look at:

  • Webex whiteboards: Will your teams be expected to use whiteboards through Webex instead of Slack plugins for visual collaboration?
  • Security standards: Cisco Webex Teams has different security standards to Slack. Your employees may need additional advice on how to remain compliant.
  • New integrations: There aren’t many overlapping integrations between Slack and Cisco Webex Teams. If your employees relied on integrations in Slack to get work done, they’ll need to learn how to use the closest value in Webex. This may also mean third-party tools to host the integration.
Cisco Webex Meetings
Cisco Webex Meetings

Step 5: Migrate Slack users to Cisco Webex Teams

This can take some time.

For example, if your Slack data files are too large, you’ll need to adopt workarounds to take them into Cisco.

This could mean that data ends up getting lost, so you will need to back-up your systems beforehand.


It is definitely worth developing an adoption plan for your teams.

This involves bringing your teams together to discuss the features of Webex Teams, and how they work compared to Slack.

Explaining the benefits of each tool to your employees and offering training can help to drive adoption.

However, it’s likely that some team members will continue to use unsanctioned apps regardless.

The best you can do in this case is hope that too much information doesn’t get lost and that you don’t face any major privacy issues.

Slack and Cisco
Slack and Cisco

The better way? Don’t migrate Slack to Cisco Webex Teams

Migrating from Slack to Cisco Webex Teams isn’t easy.

From over-sized data packets that get lost during transition, to team members who refuse to use a new system, there are plenty of roadblocks.

The good news is that there is another way.

Instead of choosing between Slack or Webex Teams, give your teams the option to use both.

By bringing multiple messaging apps together seamlessly, you can avoid migration headaches.

What’s more, you’ll keep your teams happy and benefit from a productive workforce. Employees feel more satisfied at work when they use the tools they like.

Mio is a solution that keeps everyone in your team connected – regardless of what app they use.

Whether your users prefer Slack or Cisco Webex Teams, you can sync their conversations with ease.

Check out this video where we power seamless communication between workplace chat apps.

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