Are traditional ways of communicating surviving the e-mail revolution in
Europe? In the workplace electronic mail has taken a massive hold potentially
undermining other forms of communication.
The chart below shows its uptake by managers in various countries in the
past three years to communicate with employees. Denmark leads the way, showing
a massive 94 per cent of organisations increased their use of e-mail, with the
UK not so far behind with three-quarters of organisations.
E-mail has taken off in the second half of the decade as a valid means of
sending corporate messages. Just five years ago one third of Danish
organisations and almost half of UK organisations were reporting not using
e-mail at all, compared to none and one in seven respectively in 1999.
However, how far this explosion in use is beneficial is uncertain. It has
prompted a need for information management to stop employees suffering from
information overload, and this will intensify over the next few years.
Despite this massive growth, e-mail does not necessarily appear to be
replacing other forms of communication. Organisations are reporting increases
in their use of all forms of communication, creating more opportunities for
getting their message across effectively. E-mail is one means of facilitating
rapid feedback which is particularly useful for workers in organisations with a
direct client interface wanting to improve their service quality.
There are, of course, many issues associated with the various channels of
communication available. Which are the most effective for getting across what
types of information? How can these different channels be used effectively to
achieve a motivated and well-informed workforce? These are some of the issues
companies need to consider as e-mail use is set to continue its explosive