How to Maintain a Client-Focused Inbox
Let us paint you a picture: like many professionals, you use email for anything and everything, including communication with clients and internal staff. If emails aren’t the first thing you wake up to and the last thing you look at before going to sleep, they’re certainly the first thing you check when you get into the office. Indeed, you’re so inundated with emails it’s practically another job to keep up with them all. You prioritize the ones from clients and the ones with immediate to-do’s, but it’s still hard to identify the emails that require action and the ones that don’t. Sound familiar? A cumbersome email process such as the one we just described makes it easy to miss things and drop the ball on tasks.
Using robust communication applications might be the best way to reign in the crazy and keep your inbox focused on clients. The right app will create a place for employees to communicate, track tasks, and reduce the flood of internal emails. Here’s how your firm can leverage from using collaboration apps Slack, Asana, Teams, and AIMI:
Slack: Dubbing itself “the collaboration hub that moves work forward”, Slack offers a variety of features that organizes chat conversations. You can create communication channels relevant to your firm’s workflows and share them externally with clients, vendors and partners. You can collaborate over video and voice calls, share your screen, and send relevant files. Slack comes with a robust search feature that can be used to provide insight on past conclusions and integration options for Zendesk, Salesforce, and more.
Skype: An intuitive way to chat and make calls, Skype helps people around the globe stay in touch. Skype’s well-known for its video capabilities, but not everyone realizes it also offers screen sharing. Over Skype you can send photos, emoticons, files, and more to individuals and groups. Skype’s other features include the ability to connect over artificial intelligence devices, an extension for your browser, and a translator for voice calls, video calls and chats. Implement Skype in your corporate communications strategy to foster collaboration across your whole firm.
Teams: For an efficient way to communicate with your whole firm, bring everyone together in Microsoft Teams. Teams’ seamless experience includes reliable calling, instant messaging, and conferencing or audio, video and web. Teams’ add-ins help you tailor the program to your firm, while its file sharing feature helps your employees collaborate in real time without leaving their desks. Teams comes with every advantage of Office 365 – including end-to-end security, administrative controls and the most current compliance procedures – and offers built-in apps, like Word, Excel, PowerPoint, SharePoint.
AIMI: AbacusNext’s own accounting practice management platform, OfficeTools, comes with its own collaboration and messaging tool called AIMI (Alerts and Instant Message Interface). AIMI lets you view your current chat conversation, see the groups you’re associated with, and create events. You can use AIMI’s Event Log to keep track of specific events via “Pop-up Bubbles” and chat internally with your colleagues. AIMI also functions as a task manager, alerting you of impending tasks with pop-up reminders. Train your whole firm on the benefits of using AIMI, and emphasize how this communication tool will minimize your onslaught of emails.
When you download communication apps that were created with chat, calls, and task management in mind, you’ll see a drop in burdensome internal emails and be able to focus on the actionable, business-driven ones that come though. Analyze your internal processes, then implement any of the solutions we listed above to organize your workflow and make email more manageable.