Breaking the Cycle of Email Dependency

Every employer has a duty of care to protect their employees, even when they aren't working in the office. This means ensuring employee safety and well-being by having a reliable way to reach your remote, mobile and frontline workers with critical updates and news.

Many things have changed over the last few years, with many employees now working on the go, from home or in the field which means an overreliance on email for communication, especially when it is time sensitive, can be problematic. Email is ineffective and inconvenient for employees that are mobile and field or factory based who don't have a corporate email address or are only able to check emails periodically. Even those employees who are desk-based may be working from home, or aren't necessarily tied to their desktop computers 24/7.

There are also those employees who may be working flexible hours, or split time between the office and home, which means they might only be logging on after hours. Not everyone is working the same hours anymore and many organizations have large groups of employees that work shifts. What happens when there's important information or a critical update that needs to be communicated after hours? How will you be able to communicate with employees who are remote if there's an email outage? Are you still relying on the inefficiencies of cascading communication to frontline employees? If there's an emergency, or when you need to share something that effects everyone, you need to be able to reach everyone no matter where they are or what time of the day it is, which means email alone isn't going to be enough.

Common Areas that are Effected by Email Dependency

Here are just a few common scenarios where email dependency can lead to missed notifications and delayed communication:

  • Hourly and frontline employees: Workers in as retail stores and distribution centers are not typically given corporate email accounts, making it impossible to communicate urgent and relevant information via email.
  • Field-based employees: Service technicians and construction workers are often on active job sites or in customers’ homes, performing duties not conducive to receiving information via email.
  • Mobile employees: Employees that must drive during the workday, like sales reps or drivers, to carry out their job duties can’t receive emails while driving without safety implications.
  • Remote employees: For desk-based employees working from home, emails sent outside of business hours, while an employee is in a meeting or away from their desk, or in regards to an IT outage may not be received in a timely manner or at all.
  • Contract employees and consultants: On-site external contractors such as auditors and maintenance staff often aren’t given a corporate email address, making it difficult to communicate about facility-related emergencies or information that may impact them.

Why Email isn't Enough

Email is a tactic, not a strategy. It’s a great medium, but not the only one that should be used, especially during critical events when time is of the essence or when you want to create a communications strategy that is driving digital inclusion throughout the workforce.

Here are a few reasons why email isn’t always the most suitable channel for all your communication:

Email fatigue is real

People working from home are receiving more emails than ever before. Emails can be easily missed or overlooked due to the sheer volume of email employees now receive. On average, internal emails only have an open rate of 66 percent, and even then it can be days between the time an email is sent and when it is finally read. Emails just don’t create the sense of urgency that is needed in certain situations and they don’t typically get the same level of attention as a message alert or similar form of communication.

Email isn’t for everyone

From retail to warehouse employees to fleet drivers and maintenance workers, nearly every organization has employees that don’t have or can’t frequently check email. Being able to send information via message is far more likely to be received in a timely manner than an email. Think about last minute shift schedule changes or key information that you're needing to send. Chances are email probably won't be the best way to notify everyone and make sure that they get the message.

Email is reactive

Email is just a messenger. To keep employees informed a dedicated employee, or team, has to log in to their email, craft the message, choose the right distribution list, send it, and hope for the best. This process takes too long during critical events when timely communication is a must. You're just not going to reach everyone when email is your only mode of communication.

Email can't track effectiveness

Email also provides no streamlined way for the business to know that everyone actually got and received the message. Even if you're using read receipts somebody would then need to individually review receipts, cross-check those against your employee database, and try to personally follow up with any non-responders. This time that could be better spent elsewhere, especially in an emergency situation where that's time you juts don't have.

Expand Your Reach With a Multichannel Strategy

With field-based employees, remote work, and a generally more dispersed workforce, the nature of the modern workforce brings with it a number of new challenges for HR and business leaders who must be able to communicate with employees at a moment’s notice and make sure that everyone actually gets the message. Implementing a multichannel employee communication strategy should be a top priority for every organization.

Including mobile messaging platforms, tools and apps as part of your communication strategy means that you can reach employees wherever they are, whether they are desk-bound or on the ground in factories, warehouses or store fronts. Using an application can help integrate the flow of information between all employees, making sure that you are communicating effectively to everyone.

By ensuring that internal communications reach everyone in the organization employees are empowered to work with a higher level of efficiency, higher quality and greater levels of accountability, all of which contribute to driving improved customer service and a better bottom-line.

Leverage the power of WhatsApp

WhatsApp might be the solution you need to add to your multi-channel communications strategy. There's a lot of uses for using WhatsApp to send information to your employees that could very easily streamline a lot of the effort you're making when using only email to send information to your employees. You can read more about using WhatsApp for Internal Communications here.

There's a world of possibilities with the WhatsApp Business API for your internal communications, but we understand if it may feel a little overwhelming to get started. Get in touch with us to find out how Sweesh can help you kick your communications into high gear without needing to develop any complicated tools.

The Sweesh platform offers an all-in-one WhatsApp messaging tool to help you create, send and track messages you need to send to your employees.

See Sweesh in action by booking a demo with one of our Product Specialists -