The end of the E-Mail in the Digital Economy
The end of the E-Mail in the Digital Economy
Business without e-mail is impossible but at the same time business with e-mail is becoming annoying because it is starting to impact negatively on productivity. E-Mail was created to communicate but it is used also to collaborate and my feeling is that is not working properly. So, in the area of collaboration there is the danger of “playing golf with a baseball bat”…just the wrong tool.
The Digital Economy is demanding for internal and external collaboration at productivity rates, which are drastically much higher than the levels we know from today. Therefore internal e-mails and a also a great portion of external e-mails will be replaced by next generation collaboration systems that help to manage projects with their respective data, activities, and project-related communication.
It is very probable that in 10 years from now more than half of the amount of e-mails we handle today will disappear and will be replaced by software that already exists or will be built in near future.
Today’s young generation doesn’t see e-mail as a communication platform any more and even if these young persons are forced to use it at their future workplaces, they will find new tools and better ways to collaborate without e-mail.
So, how can companies start today improving their team productivity within collaboration projects in order to be prepared for the future?
Thinking in terms of Projects
First, getting teams to think and act in terms of “projects” as a unity for goals, data, activities, communications and results. Business activities can be organized in projects and team members are contributors to one or several projects in parallel. It will be quite a challenge to change the thinking from “my personal productivity” to “our team productivity”.
Sharing information centrally
Second, getting teams with internal and external members to share information in “virtual project spaces” and stop sending files through e-mail. The productivity gains come automatically from quickly accessing the information and using always the newest version of each document. This may sound trivial but it is actually not because a great portion of miscommunication comes today from using the wrong level of information.
Collaborating within shared documents
Third, sharing documents in the cloud and collaborating on unique documents instead of sending documents and cutting and pasting the responses from all reviewers. The technology for sharing and collaborating on documents exist today but we are still far away from making this a standard for project teams.
Fourth, sharing project activities and scheduling them in a central project in which everybody can see the own responsibilities and the level of achievement of all the project activities. Only very modern systems allow doing this in an easy and intuitive way. Traditional project management software does not apply because it was built for complicated projects like building bridges but not for the standard simple projects that make up 95% of all the projects we handle on a day-to-day basis.
And last not least, managing past experience to re-use it and enhance it in future. Today the experience is in the people and when they leave the company they take it with them. So, the company’s biggest asset, which is experience, is on a movable ground.
Are you prepared for the next technological wave in Collaboration?
In the latest years new collaboration technology has been created and we are at the beginning of a big next wave in which we can be surfing comfortably or we can be suffering from the wave swirl. It is our decision where we want to be.
Do you agree that the use of e-mail may decline in future? Do you have strategies to overcome that situation before it happens?
Creating new offerings based on the digital market needs
In case you are planning to create your future collboration strategy or you are looking for the right collaboration technology which implements all the ideas noted above, feel free to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Best wishes and regards,
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End of E-Mail usage
Some companies are already abolishing email. The questions is what is next?