Some days the mountain of emails in your inbox can seem impossible to tackle. Email is the most common form of communication both internally and externally. However, this means that you’re getting more and more emails every day and the mountain continues to grow. Forbes estimated that the average person spends 13 hours a week just reading and processing emails! In this blog post, we’ll talk about what email overload is and how you can overcome it.

What is email overload? 

Regardless of whether you’re working from home or back in the office, email is a huge cause of stress for people. Email overload is the inability to keep up with the number of emails that you receive or send. Email overload is becoming increasingly more common as people are struggling to keep up with answering emails in addition to completing their normal tasks. 

Here are some signs that you’re struggling with email overload: 
  • Emails are falling through the cracks. You’re experiencing lost and missed messages. 
  • You feel like you can never seem to catch up on your emails and are constantly behind. 
  • You’re stressed and overwhelmed every time you check your email because of the number of messages. 
  • Actual projects are set on the back burner so you can dedicate time to answering emails. 

If you’re experiencing any of these, you’re not alone. With email as a primary means of internal communication, people are almost expected to always be available to respond, sometimes even outside work hours. Remote work hasn’t helped this either, as normal in-person interactions have switched to email communication as well. The need to constantly check your email has negative consequences, such as  

  • Decreased productivity 
  • Difficulty staying focused  
  • Trouble meeting deadlines 

So how do we combat email overload and effectively manage emails? 

1. Avoid unnecessary emails 

While this might seem like an obvious one, I’m sure we’ve all read an email at one point and thought “really?”. If you’re struggling with email overload, it’s likely that your coworkers are as well. Avoid sending emails that you don’t need a response to, especially if your reply is going to be a simple “thanks” or “got it”. Implementing a guide about what emails need a response can effectively reduce unnecessary emails. Create rules about using the Reply All function, or when people should use CC or BCC, and rules on when people should use email instead of a different internal communication tool (such as Microsoft Teams). 

2. Implement an email management solution 

An email management solution can make all the difference and save you time to focus on what matters most. Emailgistics offers intelligent rules, a routing system and mailbox schedules. With this, you can define mailbox and user schedules, so emails are only routed to available agents and those whose inboxes are not already full. You can ensure that an email never falls through the cracks by using the snooze function, which will send you a reminder to reply to any given email after you’ve already seen it. 

3. Allocate time to check your emails 

If you’re dealing with email overload, it’s likely taking up so much of your time that you can’t complete other important tasks. Dedicate a certain amount of time to just checking your emails. This can be first thing in the morning, after lunch, and an hour before the end of the day. Allocating specific time to emails means you’ll have more time to complete other tasks and you won’t constantly feel the need to check your messages. 

With these tips, you’re set to reach inbox zero and avoid email overload. To learn more about how Emailgistics can help you manage your inbox, click here.