Email is one of the most important communication channels for many businesses. However, most businesses manage their email ineffectively. Your business could potentially reap significant benefits from a few simple improvements in how you manage emails.
In 2019, there were 3.9 billion email users and that figure is set to grow to 4.3 billion users in 2023, which means email isn't going away anytime soon, despite the number of alternatives available. Especially for business-to-business communication, email provides a relatively efficient and secure means of sharing important documents, such as contracts, proposals, and plans.
While email can be an effective way to share important information, especially compared to couriering and faxing documents, it's not without risk. People can get overwhelmed with other emails and priorities, which means they can miss critical deadlines, or key information may be shared with one individual at a company rather than the relevant team.
The beauty of email is that it's an asynchronous mode of communication, so you don't require the other person to be at their desk when you send them an email. But that very feature also makes email somewhat risky, as you can't necessarily confirm that the person has seen your email, opened it, dealt with it, shared the information with relevant teammates, and saved it appropriately.
Internally, email can also significantly slow the pace of communication between teams, leading to more inefficiencies and, in some cases, duplicated content. For many of today's knowledge workers, it can seem as if they simply spend their entire day dealing with emails.
How can we improve our communication when email remains such an integral part of the communications channel?
The need to communicate more accurately and efficiently has led to increased adoption of collaborative platforms. While email remains a key means of communication with external parties, more companies are turning to collaborative platforms such as Microsoft Teams and Microsoft SharePoint for their internal communications.
By moving internal conversations away from email and into a more collaborative environment, teams can communicate with each other faster and more effectively. Collaborative applications provide a centralised source of content that teams can access and work on simultaneously. This can help to minimise the risk of version control issues and missed deadlines while improving visibility.
Though critical documents can be shared over email and saved in a central location, information and approvals can be lost when email conversations are left in the inbox. While these can still be saved in a central location, this can be a cumbersome process and team members are at risk of missing important documents.
By shifting work into collaborative environments, teams can communicate within documents and discuss edits and changes in real-time. This helps to ensure that all team members have access to the latest updates and conversations on the work as they happen.
While collaborative environments facilitate better communication and teamwork for colleagues, organisations still heavily rely on email to communicate with external parties. But this means that team members can miss key client updates and approvals if they aren't included in those emails. Though staff can still ensure relevant emails are saved for their colleagues' reference, this time-consuming process is often forgotten, which can compromise the team's ability to collaborate.
OnePlace Solutions makes saving documents and emails from external parties easier for teams. We provide extensions and add-ins for Outlook that connect it to SharePoint, which makes saving emails along with their metadata as easy as clicking a button. This saves teams time and enhances productivity across the board.
With OnePlace Solutions, previously slow communication can transform into a more fast-paced and collaborative process that enhances your team's and your organisation's productivity. OnePlace Solutions empowers a more collaborative environment and streamlines the internal communications process, so you can ensure you are delivering high-quality work on time for your clients.
To find out how OnePlace Solutions can transform your workflows, contact us today.