£203 billion ’email drain’ affecting UK productivity

Workers spending an average of 492 hours using email each year

The process of reading and responding to emails is costing UK businesses as much as £203.4 billion a year and could be one of the root causes of its productivity problems, according to an email management specialist.
The average annual cost of the time spent monitoring and using emails could be as much as £6,554.90 per employee, suggests Mail Manager’s recent research.
The company also found that workers spend an average of 492 hours using email each year and sends or receives an average of 114 in a single day.
Alec Milton, Managing Director of  Mail Manager, said: “Email has become a drain on our economy and a key contributor to poor productivity. It is meant to be a critical business tool but few people use it efficiently now and the massive volume of emails flooding inboxes means filing and searching for information has become harder and more time consuming.
“The UK economy is steadily growing but suspicions remain about our ability to sustain growth without a stronger output per employee. A steady improvement in our use of email would generate significant capacity in our economy and allow more time to focus on tasks – on production and growth.”
Milton says the increasing inefficiencies in the way people use email means that this time is costing the UK economy more and more as the value and usefulness of those emails reduces.
He claims Iit points to the duplication of email through superfluous copying and the lack of effective email filing and search facilities as contributing factors to the ineffectiveness of time used on email.
Milton added: “Barely an hour passes without most of us wondering why we were copied on a certain email. The amount of email duplication in our business communications is huge and it is taking its toll on productivity.
“The sheer volume of emails we receive means filing and storing them effectively is also much harder. Employers have to address this, either with practical advice or by investing in software to aid email management.”