Melbourne, June 9 : While Internet and emails may be boosting co-ordination among workers in an organisation, but on the flip side, they are also increasingly making people slaves to the electronic form of communication and offices less efficient, says an email consultant.
Email Management Solutions managing director Sharon MacNevin said that there is 40 per cent increase in email use per year since 1996.
''It has grown wild and out of control. Searching for emails can be one of the biggest time wasters,'' Theage.com.au quoted Ms MacNevin, as saying.
Email Management Solutions is a consulting firm that trains businesses on the best ways to reducing time checking inboxes and using workers' time more effectively in the office.
It has found that on an average, an employee spends 14.5 hours a week reading and responding to email.
''That is over two hours a day just reading and replying to your emails,'' said MacNevin.
She further added that workers were not ''time managing'' now. She pointed out that before the introduction of email, employees would collect the daily mail from their pigeonhole, and may be the morning mail used to contain internal memos. ''You sorted thorough that mail, worked out what was the priority and what was not important. That was effective management of communication, and we did it well,'' she said.
Also, she said that memos were written in a concise way, so that everyone understood it, unlike today's wayward use of email.
''You were told the style of the memo was all about, and it was part of your induction program. There are few protocols as to how you stylise your email, on what you can say. There are email policies about language and no sexual intonations,'' she said.
She even pointed to the culture of 'NRN' - No Reply Necessary - on the sent email, in order to avoid replying a 'thanks' via email.
''NRN gives the person the right not to send a message they got it or not to acknowledge it. You would never go into the tea-room and say thanks to 20 people for the email, would you? Or send a thanks for a memo'' she said.
Also keeping a regular check on a worker's email breaks down time management skills and reduces a worker's productivity.
''If you go from the work at hand and see a little pop up that says you have a new email, you are more than likely going to get trapped and you'll be in the email cycle. It could take up to a good 20 minutes before you get back to the same point in concentration you were at with the work beforehand," she said.