Email: we all use it, we all have it, and we all have a hard time managing the flow of it. Worse, enterprises use it, store it, and have difficulty managing it. When I talk with business and technical people, they tell me that the most important and challenging problem they face today is how to effectively manage email.
Current solutions to the email management problem have all failed:
• Email Archives – Archives fail to add any intelligence to email; essentially, archives are just document warehouses that help offload server capacity stress. Management of important business communication falls to the person who received the email , never to be shared or managed by the organization. If that person leaves the company, their email remains as an orphaned silo of information where no one will likely go until there is a lawsuit. Risks are not mitigated and efficiencies in sharing information are thwarted.
• Inbox Management Solutions – Designed to help individuals better organize their own emails, these solutions fail to centralize email and fail to allow information sharing across users. Inbox management solutions are essentially consumer solutions, not enterprise solutions. Users may have a slightly more organized inbox, but they do nothing to help the enterprise organize and manage their important business communications.
• Enterprise Content/Document Management Systems – Document management solutions were never designed to solve the email problem. Originally designed to handle documents, the management of email was an afterthought making it difficult for users to easily file and find emails once filed. While add-ons have made the filing experience better (after a lot of effort being expended), these solutions almost entirely ignore the “findability” requirement. If you want people to file their emails, shouldn’t you expect they will in turn want to retrieve them easily? The low adoption of these solutions can be largely attributed to their failure to deliver value to the individual—which in turn means their failure to deliver for the enterprise.
So what can an enterprise do about email management? If email archives, inbox management tools, and ECM systems can’t solve this problem, what can?
Recommind is very excited to introduce to the market a new category of software specifically and intentionally designed for managing email. We call it Enterprise Email Management. This new product category addresses the key issues around email faced by enterprises. Enterprise Email Management adds value to organizations in key areas:
• Risk Mitigation, Compliance, and Litigation: Enterprise Email Management creates a central repository of business-related information, moving risk from people’s individual email to one location that can be easily managed and controlled by the organization. This not only reduces risk but also easily enables proper compliance within the organization around business-related emails. At the same time, it greatly reduces email collection risks in the course of litigation or regulatory requests because all business-related emails are in one place.
• Knowledge Sharing: Because Enterprise Email Management collects emails across all users, employees get a 360° view of the customers, projects, or products they are working on. One side of the organization can now know what the other side is doing. This both enables and promotes consistent information flow across the organization and provides a consistent experience for the organizations customers.
• Exchange Offloading and Archive Retirement: Having a centralized repository also provides the ability to move business related emails off of Exchange and the ability to get rid of any non-business related emails after a specified period of time. Only unfiled emails would be left in Exchange and thus could be deleted, while all business related emails would continue to be managed in a centralized store.
Of course, some software solutions have tried to address some or all of these areas with a varying degree of success. It is important to look at the reasons why Recommind’s enterprise email management solution, Decisiv™ Email, works where others have failed. The reason Decisiv Email succeeds—unlike the other solutions discussed above—is that Decisiv Email was designed from the ground up to address the Enterprise Email Management problem. As form follows function, the product design and many of the product features make it unique for holistically solving these problems:
1. Predictiv™ Filing: Using Recommind’s advanced analytics, Predictiv Filing understands email content and user patterns in order to accurately predict where an email should be filed. Decisiv Email allows the user to file email with just one click.
2. Enterprise Crowd Sourcing: Because of the massive number of emails people get every day, along with the very limited time people have to deal with it, it is very important to leverage every filing decision. With Decisiv Email, as soon as an email is filed by one person it is filed for all recipients, everyone see this immediately through a checkbox icon, providing full transparency for all users and eliminating the need for duplicative filing.
3. Decisiv Explorer: One of the biggest—if not the biggest—issue legacy email systems have had with addressing the enterprise email management problem is the lack of thought and design for the user. If this email problem is to be solved with user involvement then the user must benefit from the solution or it will not be readily adopted. As such, the findability of user-filed emails and related email filed by others should be paramount. Decisiv Explorer addresses this acute user pain in a way that gives something back starting with the very first email a user files. Users want to use this system, making adoption much more certain and ensuring that not only does the enterprise get what it wants, but the users get leverage out of using the solution as well.
At Recommind, we are passionate about this new category of Enterprise Email Management and believe that Decisiv Email is unique in its ability to address all the key issues around managing email in the enterprise. To learn more, click here for a customer case study.