Email Wastes Time, Procurement Can Turn to Other Social Collaboration Tools

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Workers are increasingly demanding collaboration and communication tools that are efficient and easy to use. It’s why messaging apps like Slack, and now Google Spaces, are becoming so popular. Facebook even has its Facebook at Work, which connects teams and allows them to share information internally. Email, however, is becoming less relevant in the workplace, and many leaders think it actually can waste time, according to a recent survey by Robert Half.

The survey of more than 2,200 chief financial officers showed 17% of the time they spend on email is wasted. A major culprit, besides spam messages, is being copied on emails that are not relevant, CFOs said. Nearly 30 percent of CFOs said irrelevant emails were the main reason for wasted time on email, suggesting coworkers often copy people on messages they do not need to see.

Nearly 20% of CFOs surveyed also said they receive email messages that could be better delivered another way. And 14% cited long, rambling messages as a main contributor to wasted time on email.

A recent article in The Economist pointed out why solutions like Slack are more attractive work communication tools than email. For one, Slack can structure communication into threads that focus on a specific topic or project — places where team members can share information and files associated with that project. This can be more effective than sending separate and various emails with attachments, which can be harder to organize and keep track of.

This idea also translates into procurement-specific collaboration tools, such as those embedded into SpendLead’s platform. Buyers within the procurement department can search for vendors on the platform and share information, send comments and discuss the potential supplier with other team members, all within communication forums within Spendlead. It’s a mix of a project management, collaboration and communication tool, Fabrice Saporito, founder and CEO of SpendLead, has said of the solution.

It’s also a tool that can prevent wasted time on emails. SpendLead’s forums keeps procurement professionals communicating and collaborating in one platform, instead of having to send information and communicate over separate emails. All the information and discussion is kept in that forum, Saporito said, making it easy for procurement to keep track of the organization’s sourcing activities.

To find out more on how procurement can take advantage of social collaboration, register for our upcoming webinar: The Sharing Economy and What It Means for Procurement and Social Networking, on May 24 at 12 p.m. central.

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