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Email is dead

by Nick Willis December 07, 2011

​I appreciate that the title of this blog is both attention seeking and perhaps ignorant, however there may be an element of truth to it.

Whilst I write this blog I occasionally catch a glimpse of a new email entering my inbox, probably to be skimmed over (or deleted) later this evening. This raises the question of how much of your inbox contains useful information, and how much of it is junk. Now junk can be separated into a number of different categories including:

  • An offer of 3 months free membership to that marketing magazine you never read

  • A daily email with the latest technology news which was useful a while ago, but now makes no sense at all.

  • An email from your friend who thinks it is productive to spend working hours talking about ‘hilarious’ online videos of cats.

So going through my inbox now, I can assure you that the majority of my emails can be classified as ‘junk’. What does this mean? Should I create rules to filter out the sales targets from the dancing cats video? Maybe. Do I sign up with too many websites promising the latest market news and insight? Probably. But I’m not alone in this. One such gentleman who clearly agrees happens to be the CEO of Atos: Thierry Breton.

The leader of this global tech company has recently announced plans to phase out internal emails over the next 18 months. In an attempt to improve employee communication, Breton has outlined a plan to utilise alternative techniques such as online networking platforms and instant messaging services. Obviously this is a huge step for a very large organisation, and will surely involve high administration costs. Breton though, clearly believes that any upfront costs will be insignificant compared to the improved productivity and efficiency of his workforce. This got me thinking about the most effective form of communication, and consequently, the declining use of face to face interaction.

The huge growth in online platforms promising exciting new ways to collaborate with colleagues and clients has meant that traditional face to face meetings have become a thing of the past. However in the recruitment industry, the ability to meet face to face is an important factor in the hiring process, and one that many recruitment agencies tend to miss out on.

Here at Freshminds Talent, we understand the importance of face to face communication, which is why we interview all of our candidates in person before being shortlisted for a role. This opportunity to meet candidates in person allows us to pick up on those personality traits and soft skills that are impossible to identify via a CV. Recognising these soft skills enable us to source and select the most suitable candidates who not only fit the bill on paper, but will transition into the company culture with ease.

So whilst the number of organisations utilising online communication platforms continues to growth, we are keen to ensure that our candidate facing interaction is kept very personal, very tailored, and ultimately, face to face.

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