IT Pro is supported by its audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more

Email is killing productivity, new research finds

UK-based employees spend almost a full working day each week managing their inboxes

Poor email processes are killing productivity, with a quarter of UK-based employees spending nearly one working day each week managing their inboxes.

That's according to research by Mail Manager, which surveyed 500 business leaders and decision-makers in the UK. It found that one in four respondents spent at least one hour a day going through their inbox, which amounts to almost one full working day spent on managing emails.

This is despite email being the most-often used form of communication. 90% of respondents indicated that they use email to communicate with their clients, while Skype and WhatsApp, by comparison, were used by 55% of those surveyed. Just 15% of those surveyed said that Slack was their go-to communication platform. 

Jacob Wardrop, commercial director at Mail Manager, described email as the “letter of today”. 

“While tools like Slack and WhatsApp are great for informal correspondence and chat, email remains the core correspondence method for formal communication. Before the digital era, companies would send formal correspondence as letters, which would be physically stored. Now, email is the tool for formal correspondence, but the need for filing and securely storing this communication remains, even though it’s digital,” he said.

Related Resource

The future of frictionless work

Navigating the digital workplace

Download now

The additional time spent on sorting emails has a negative impact on employees emotions and work. More than half (55%) of respondents said that they were frustrated by not being able to find specific documents in their inbox, which left them feeling as if they were wasting time (63%), being less productive (48%), and losing track of project information (52%).

In some cases, poor email management led to missed customer and client opportunities, an experience shared by 45% of those surveyed.

The findings come after last year Slack added a feature to send messages beyond the walls of a company and connect organisations into shared channels. 

Aside from productivity gains, Slack’s CISO Larkin Ryder also pointed out safety benefits of switching to the messaging tool.

"Email is an open front door to security threats to an organisation - $12 billion in losses are caused by business email scams, and 90% of data breaches are from phishing. If you want a more secure collaboration solution for your organisation, the first thing you can do is take your employees out of email and into Slack,” he said.

Featured Resources

Accelerating AI modernisation with data infrastructure

Generate business value from your AI initiatives

Free Download

Recommendations for managing AI risks

Integrate your external AI tool findings into your broader security programs

Free Download

Modernise your legacy databases in the cloud

An introduction to cloud databases

Free Download

Powering through to innovation

IT agility drive digital transformation

Free Download

Most Popular

Former Uber security chief to face fraud charges over hack coverup
data breaches

Former Uber security chief to face fraud charges over hack coverup

29 Jun 2022
Macmillan Publishers hit by apparent cyber attack as systems are forced offline
Security

Macmillan Publishers hit by apparent cyber attack as systems are forced offline

30 Jun 2022
FCC commissioner urges Apple and Google to remove TikTok from app stores
data protection

FCC commissioner urges Apple and Google to remove TikTok from app stores

29 Jun 2022