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The High Cost of Email Overload

By September 29, 2015June 17th, 2017Blog

Do you ever wonder how your employees spend their workday? While several recent studies have found that many workers are wasting time on Facebook and with online shopping, it’s also important to note that the vast majority of employees are actually spinning their wheels coping with an all-too-common problem in the business world: email overload.

Employees spend an average of 28 percent of their day on email—which includes reading, responding, filing and flagging messages. In fact, email management is the second most time-consuming task other than job-specific duties. (Aren’t you glad Facebook wasn’t Number 1?)

Of course, email overload sounds like a pain, but is it truly doing harm to your company? In most cases, the answer is yes. Let’s take a look at the high cost of email overload:

Lost productivity

Employees now spend more than a quarter of their day managing email. This email overload makes it impossible for them to be productive as they could be. Email was designed to be a work tool—not a hindrance—and yet it is killing employee productivity every day. Consider that some studies have found that reading and addressing a single email can require up to 20 minutes—time that could be spent on the other important business tasks.

Monetary costs

Not only does email overload mean your employees are struggling to keep their heads above water; a flood of emails can also impact your company’s bottom line.

For organizations who face too many incoming bulk and spam messages, the IT department will often “dial up” the company’s overall email security filter, pushing more emails into the spam folder. However, this opens you up to the possibility of false positives: legitimate emails that are incorrectly flagged as spam—usually because of content that includes lots of numbers or unique formatting.

False positives either go completely unnoticed, or employees have to regularly root around in their spam folders in order to flag them as legitimate message. In the worst-case scenarios, they can be costly. Consider the case of one law firm that missed emails about a court date. After their team failed to appear in court, they had to pay thousands of dollars in legal fees.

A typical organization with around 1,000 end users spends about $3 million a year to fight and manage spam. Your company doesn’t need to add to that cost by also missing important messages because of your spam filter.

Potential exposure to security threats

About 20 percent of emails the average worker receives 80 or more emails a day are spam. In an 8-hour workday, that equals at least 10 emails an hour. No wonder employees are feeling overwhelmed.

As workers struggle to keep up with a rising tide of incoming emails, the likelihood that someone will accidentally open a malicious message only grows. With more than 80 spam messages coming in each day, it’s easy to imagine an employee distractedly downloading an infected attachment or falling for a phishing scam. Then, your entire local network could be exposed.

In addition to the monetary costs mentioned above, successful email security schemes can be incredibly costly. Cybercrime costs U.S. companies about $38 billion a year, and that number is only expected to grow in the coming years.

As you can see, email overload isn’t simply a nuisance: it can be extremely costly and highly dangerous for your company. That’s why it’s important to end email overload for good. To learn how to better manage email and take back your inbox, contact Sendio now.