80% of businesses still use email as a primary collaboration tool

The decades-old format is still the most popular way to work across organisations, despite a wide availability of specialist tools

Graphic of a man with a megaphone with email icons and his team on a blue background

You might think that there has never been a better time for collaboration. With a number of high-profile communication tools now available to businesses, such as Slack, Microsoft Teams, Trello,  Dropbox, G-Suite and Skype, it's difficult to believe that email is still a key player.

But new research from Ingram Micro into how people work in small and mid-sized businesses has revealed that 80% of respondents see email as their primary collaboration and communication tool.

The main reason given is because it is easy to use, despite not being fully optimised for collaboration. Because most of us have used email for decades, it is an easy fall-back, particularly when communicating with clients or other external people.

Almost a third of respondents to the survey say that modern tools such as Skype and instant messaging need to be introduced in their workplaces. In these cases, it may well be that email is being used as the only viable option, with other tools provided by businesses either being too complicated, or simply not up to the job.

Advertisement
Advertisement - Article continues below
Advertisement - Article continues below

The survey also highlights generational differences in employees' use of such software. A whopping 85% of under 35's admit to using workplace technologies such as instant messaging, Skype, file hosting and sharing tools that aren't supported or authorised by their employers.

Use of unauthorised tools like this is called shadow IT, and it raises serious security questions. When IT teams aren't aware of hardware or software being used in the business environment, they aren't able to secure it, or enforce any policies around usage.

A rise in use of tools like this is likely to be a response to companies not providing adequate ways to communicate or share files. The survey respondents who used technologies not supplied by their organisations said they did so due to ease of use, value for money, and the ability to save time.

Featured Resources

How inkjet can transform your business

Get more out of your business by investing in the right printing technology

Download now

Journey to a modern workplace with Office 365: which tools and when?

A guide to how Office 365 builds a modern workplace

Download now

Modernise and transform your sales organisation

Learn how a modernised sales process can drive your business

Download now

Your guide to managing cloud transformation risk

Realise the benefits. Mitigate the risks

Download now
Advertisement

Recommended

Visit/agile-working/33528/it-pro-panel-why-collaboration-platforms-are-so-hard-to-deploy
agile working

Why collaboration platforms are so hard to deploy

29 Apr 2019

Most Popular

Visit/mobile/28299/how-to-use-chromecast-without-wi-fi
Mobile

How to use Chromecast without Wi-Fi

5 Feb 2020
Visit/cloud/cloud-computing/354767/google-cloud-snaps-up-multi-cloud-analytics-platform-for-26bn
cloud computing

Google Cloud snaps up multi-cloud analytics platform for $2.6bn

13 Feb 2020
Visit/operating-systems/microsoft-windows/354789/microsoft-pulls-disastrous-windows-10-security-update
Microsoft Windows

Microsoft pulls disastrous Windows 10 security update

17 Feb 2020
Visit/operating-systems/27717/how-to-fix-a-stuck-windows-10-update
operating systems

How to fix a stuck Windows 10 update

12 Feb 2020