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No Email Day 2018 - Why do businesses take part?

Happy No Email Day 2018!

Starting in 2011, No Email Day is designed to raise awareness of the productivity gains you can make when you’re not distracted all day long by emails.

“But how am I supposed to communicate with colleagues without email?” I hear you cry. Well, that question is the whole point of No Email Day. It’s supposed to get you thinking about other ways and means of communication that might be faster, more effective or more appropriate – or question whether you really need to communicate something at all.

Email’s impact on worker productivity is well-documented: employees spend almost a quarter of their workday (23%) on email alone, and on average it takes 64 seconds to return to work you were focusing on before switching to your email. A further study suggests it can take up to 25 minutes to return to maximum productivity.

So how often are we checking our email? We open new emails only SIX seconds after receiving them, and we check our emails an average of 74 times a day (Loughborough University). That’s a lot of distractions, which equates to a huge loss in productivity.

Enter No Email Day.

According to the Plan Digital website, “the main purpose of the campaign is to get people to think about how they are communicating, how often and whether it’s the best way to work or if they are actually creating more work for themselves and the recipients.”

Effective communication

When you next need to contact a colleague and you open a blank email – or even hit reply to their correspondence – why not stop for a moment and think about the other ways you could communicate with them.

Are you in the same office? If so, why not pop over to their desk? Surely your colleagues would be happy to see you.* Are they in a meeting? Perhaps a post-it note on their desk will prompt them to visit your desk when they’re back, or maybe you could pick up the phone to them if they’re not in your immediate surroundings?

The great thing about advancements in technology is that you’re no longer tied to these communication methods. With enterprise-level technologies now available at a budget-friendly price point, why not use the tools to your advantage?

Take Skype for Business as an example. For those unfamiliar, it’s more than voice or video calling. Skype for Business includes business instant messaging; perfect to grab your busy colleague’s attention if it’s important, and more free-flowing than endless emails. If you need to call that person, you can do so in Skype – you could gaze lovingly into their eyes or, more productively, share screens to collaborate on any number of tasks.

Microsoft Teams, the breakthrough collaboration tool of the last two years and soon to be the home for all Skype for Business functionalities, also makes for an excellent communication tool. In addition to the Skype for Business functionalities, you can easily categorise all of your conversations by teams and channels. The stream layout of Teams conversations allows you to post messages and files, and tag relevant colleagues in them.

Rather than explaining Teams in the abstract, check out some of the blogs our experts have written on their own utilisation of Teams:

Some may argue that these communication methods are an additional distraction but communicating with your colleagues will always require some of your attention. No Email Day is a great opportunity to look at these alternative methods, rather than defaulting to a long, rambling email for anything and everything.

*We’d hope so

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