Employees fail to embrace social media

Employees are spending an average of six hours or more a week reading and sending internal e-mails, according to research from business consulting and technology services firm Concenra.

It’s the equivalent to 41 working days, or just over eight weeks, every year, despite the exponential rise of social media channels for business use over recent months.  The study, which was completed by British employees in a range of industries including healthcare and the financial services, revealed that 33 percent of employees questioned admitted they spend 6 hours or more drafting and reading e-mails every week.  A further 28 percent said they take between three and five hours a week to keep on top of internal mail.

Guetz Boué, director at Concentra, said: “Internal communications are a vital part of running a successful business, but organizations clearly aren’t getting the value they should from these processes.”

And with the abundance of communication channels available today, such as social media channels linked to intranets and portals, Boué believes there’s no place for e-mail, adding: “There’s no excuse for relying on mass e-mail. The alternatives provide a wealth of opportunity for effective communication.

The research also showed that e-mail is still the communication channel of choice for 85 percent of senior managers, and 88 percent of HR teams. Conversely, 56 percent of respondents believed that less than half the internal e-mails they receive are useful.

“For a long time, e-mail has been seen as a necessary evil, but the amount of time and energy wasted on it proves that it’s gone too far. The volume of e-mail sent and received has to be cut down, and our dependence on the ‘Cc’ culture of mass e-mailing has to stop,” continued Boué.

Source: Strategic Communication Management, Volume 14, issue 3.

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