How Much Time is Wasted on E-mails Every Day? How Do You Get That Time Back?

For the new year, you have decided that you want your company to run in a more efficient and timely manner. Whether you've had complaints from customers about slow service, or you would just like to see your company reach even higher levels of productivity. However, when employees are spending so much time dealing with emails every day, you are worried about how any of those efficiency-focused tasks are going to come to fruition.

The Facts

Essentially, the amount of time that your company spends with email every day is going to vary depending on a wide variety of factors. No one, clear-cut answer exists that fits with every company. For example, some businesses are more email and interest-based than others are. A large company is going to have to deal with more emails than a small one. Also, the number of emails depends on how readily consumers can find answers to their questions on advertisements, websites and the like. However, The Huffington Post and The Washington Post both estimate that employees spend about 25 percent of their day with emails.

Eliminating Non-Work Related Tasks

First of all, you have to focus on getting employees to stop checking their personal email accounts at work. What they do on their lunch breaks and other breaks is their business, but you want to ensure that when they are supposed to be working, that is what they are doing. You can set up monitors on the computers to block certain websites, and you can ask the managers of each department to go around to check that employees are not attending to these tasks when they are on the clock.

Providing More Answers on Your Website

Chances are, you have at least a few questions that seem to keep appearing in the corporate email box time and time again. Instead of continuing to respond to the same inquiry, you should post a frequently asked questions section on your website. Before people go to email you, they can check this section. You need to make the label for the section clear so that individuals know it exists. Also, if people have to click on a link to email you, a pop-up can ask them if they have checked that portion of the site.

Customer Service Online

Another way to handle the volume of emails is to set up a department that specifically focuses on handling customer service issues through chats. Many people like to send emails because they may not have the time to make a phone call, or they may feel awkward doing so. A chat ensures that they are still able to pursue an avenue of communication with which they are comfortable, and if you set up a team specifically to attend to those tasks, you can cut down on the amount of time you have to spend emailing.

Put Together Pre-Packaged Emails

Some questions are difficult to answer in a frequently asked questions section, but you can put together formats that can be tweaked based on what the person specifically is asking. For example, if you run a restaurant that is popular for hosting parties, you can put together all of the food and drink packages into a document. When individuals write to inquire about what is available, you have the option to update the documents if the prices need to be changed to match current market prices, but you can also leave other information, such as the sales tax, gratuity and menu items, the same.

Wasting nearly a quarter of the day dealing with emails is too much. All of that time could be better spent focusing on new marketing strategies or finding better ways to address the needs of the target audience with products. When your company takes steps to cut down on the time spent with email, you can start to see some other improvements in the business.

About the author: 
The writer, Brennen Kliffmueller, is a small business consultant focused on maximizing efficiency to ensure that companies are able to squeeze every second out of every day that they can. To help with this process, he recommends good project management software that you can find through websites like You can learn more about Brennen on Google+.
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