When it comes to your view on email, you pretty much have two choices: You can join the crew that screams email is a dying breed and devise a plan to replace it, or you can check out ways it’s evolving to become more of a benefit than a hassle and better meet your company’s needs.
The Dying Breed Crew
The email naysayers do have some valid points, such as the amount of time it typically takes to manage and respond to a load of messages. Management can lose a colossal 20 hours per week playing around with their email accounts while corporate bigwigs receive an estimated 200 emails per day, about 18 percent of which is spam.
Keeping track of all the emails can be a major hassle, as can managing them into neat little folders that often end up forgotten or unused. Communication via social media is on the rise, further pushing email out of the spotlight, but that doesn’t necessarily mean email is on its way to extinction.
Despite the debris clogging up your inbox, or perhaps because of it, solutions are cropping up to help email evolve to fit current needs.
An email facelift of sorts is one potential solution, with applications like Ping designed to upgrade the interface of email. Rather than email viewed as a big, long to-do list, such applications aim to make email more akin to instant messaging. Messages are filtered into personal conversation messages and those that contain alerts, notifications and other info to which you need not respond.
Ping makes additional interface changes that make your email inbox look more like an IM platform. It presents your conversations in little speech bubbles that encourage brevity instead of a big, blank white page that encourages something like a thesis. You can still send and receive attachments. The goal is to change your mindset of email, viewing it as a stream of messages you can access and use when you need to or feel like it instead of an ominous list of issues with which you must deal.
Email Integration and Organization
Another way to update your email is to integrate it with calendars, notes and other useful company info you can share throughout the enterprise. Managed email servers aim to do just that, and the cost of signing on an email host may be more affordable than you think.
Time-saving features include a streamlined inbox with touch response capabilities, the ability to manage loads of communications on any on-site or mobile device, continuous email availability and the choices of keeping email boxes in house or on the cloud.
Email hosts also often provide an easy-to-use management panel for admins, data loss prevention features and the ability to set up mailboxes specific to certain projects or collaborative efforts so everyone involved can quickly communicate and review what’s going on.
One of the major pluses of email is familiarity. Most everyone already has it and knows how to use it. Updating and streamlining your company email practices can be easier and less costly than pulling the plug.