Email has the potential to enhance work, collaboration and communication processes by enabling employees to deliver information online in an instant.
But used inappropriately, it can also serve to hinder business productivity, according to one commentator.
Email management expert Kimberly Medlock, president of Productive Matters, claimed this week that inefficient email practices rob the average small business of more than 2,000 hours a year.
“A company with 50 employees, each spending just ten minutes a day on unnecessary email, wastes 2,000 hours a year of productivity,” she commented.
Ms Medlock urged administrators to create systems for managing email that reduce stress and improve productivity.
“Consistently doing the right ‘little’ things can often pay off with big results,” she added.
In her view, business leaders and employees need to learn how to clear out their inboxes with a system that helps process email.
She claimed there are a number of very useful email features which “can save tons of time”, but relatively few people are fully aware of them.
“I believe in the power of organisation for your time, mind, spaces and information,” Ms Medlock stated.
“When your work environment is disorganised it can drain mental energy. There’s something about having clarity and control over all the loose ends that makes a person feel confident to handle situations.”
She claimed that in order to improve office productivity, employees need to limit places for notes, reminders and lists, cease using their inbox as a to-do list, and aim to read, respond and then remove email.
This can help save time, improve peace of mind, eliminate paper notes and reduce mental clutter, it has been claimed.
“You can be smarter and more in control of email, time and information in less than one day,” Ms Medlock argued.