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An overview of Slack’s new search window. (Slack Photo)

Workplace collaboration app Slack is great for chatting with co-workers and discussing project plans in the moment, but if you want to find a discussion that happened a month ago, good luck. New improvements to Slack’s search functions introduced Tuesday aim to solve that problem.

Over the next few weeks the 8 million people who use Slack every day will start to see a new search interface pop up when they enter a query into the search bar, Slack announced Tuesday. The update is designed to let users filter queries by team member, channel, and file type in order to hone in on the message or file they want through a new window that pops up over the main Slack feed.

Here’s how the new search interface will work:

Slack redesigned its search interface and also built new indexing technology on the back end. (Slack GIF)

The company has been working on its new approach to search for over a year, according to one of those behind-the-scenes access pieces from Fast Company. Slack not only needed to change the design and filters associated with its search function, it also decided that it needed to overhaul the back end of the service to better index all the data that is shared in a typical Slack group.

The results should make it easier to use Slack at the heart of the workday, which is the promise that has led investors to pour $841 million into the enterprise software company. Around 3 million daily active users are actually paying Slack for advanced features, a group that includes 65 percent of the Fortune 100 companies.

Slack’s Milena Talavera, senior engineering manager, talked about how the company developed a new caching system called Flannel to deal with increased demand at our GeekWire Cloud Tech Summit last month, and a video of her talk follows below.

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