in Blog, OfficeExpert, Products
Co-Author: Ben Menesi, Read time: 4 minutes

You’ve heard millions of times e-mail will disappear by 2020. It will be replaced by more sophisticated collaborative tools. They should increase both the productivity and effectiveness for everyone.

Well, 2020 is just around the corner and the volume of e-mail continues to increase! A recent study shows that there is an annual increase of the email volume of 4%:

The total number of business and consumer emails sent and received per day will exceed 293 billion in 2019 and is forecast to grow to over 347 billion by the end of 2023.

Can MS Teams alone reduce the volume of emails?

Using Teams instead of email gives you multiple advantages in terms of collaboration and knowledge sharing. Knowledge can be lost if emails don’t have all the correct recipients. Persistent chat capabilities (MS Teams) vs. asynchronous communication (email) is another important aspect.

MS Teams gives an organization the chance to reduce the amount of internal e-mails. A successful MS Teams rollout (incl. adoption) should always analyze the internal mail communication. As the usage of Teams goes up, the volume of internal email should go down.

Analyzing the success of your Teams adoption by just measuring the usage numbers within Teams and without reference to email volume is the wrong approach. Your goal should be to improve collaboration, not to add additional clutter. Remember the golden rule of business: work smarter, not harder.

Messaging – a new approach to measure user adoption

The key is to distinguish between internal and external emails and their contribution to the total volume. The number of external mails received are mostly outside your control. It is, however, possible to use internal measures and a mutual understanding to impact internal messages.

Based on the ratio between Teams messages posted vs. internal mails sent one can identify if a Department for instance is adapting to the MS Teams world and at the same time reduces the amount of emails significantly. The higher the ratio is the better the adoption is.

We used panagenda OfficeExpert to show you how this information can get displayed comprehensively and neatly on different levels (User, Department, Country, Location).

Figure 1 shows you 4 ratios for different time intervals for a selected department. For instance, the 18% figure tells you that only 18% of the total communication was done via Teams. So, there is a high potential to reduce the internal mail sent number and to increase the number of Teams messages posted.

So, this is only one item out of many you should be aware of and where you can trigger actions and campaigns within your organizations. Analyzing the adoption of MS Teams should include many different datasets. We now have the best opportunity ever to reduce email volumes and improve effective collaborative. Will MS Teams, finally, raise to the challenge? Data Analytics can show you the way.

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Comments
  • Sean McDonough
    Reply

    Show me the data!

    I agree that relying solely on raw Teams usage data is of limited value when trying to determine Teams acceptance and adoption. It’s almost like wetting your finger and holding it in the air to determine which way the wind is blowing. Usage and pattern data from other messaging options (like email) must be integrated to completely understand what users are doing and where they’re spending their time. I would argue that Yammer and other “inner loop” workloads (to use Microsoft’s parlance; see https://blogs.technet.microsoft.com/cloudyhappypeople/2017/09/28/now-it-makes-sense-microsofts-collaboration-story-in-a-single-slide/) like SharePoint (specific site types like discussion boards and wikis) should also be included to form a more complete picture.

    I know OfficeExpert is capable of gathering and interpreting data on many of O365’s workloads, and the OfficeExpert dashboards provide an excellent way to visualize what the collected data is trying to say. It seems to me that an organization could probably justify the cost of licensing Office Expert on the user behavioral data that can be gathered from Teams alone. Throw other inner-loop workloads into the mix … and wow! Organizations could probably save quite a bit on cloud costs from Microsoft by highlighting (with confidence) which workloads are actually in-use and which ones aren’t to more precisely buy services.

    Great write-up, Stefan and Ben!

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