Part 2: Is Email an Outdated Form of Business Communication? Email’s Replacement.

Posted by Eric O. Schueler, Senior V.P. of Information Technology

HRCT Instant MessagingIn Part 1 of this blog, Email’s Replacement, I introduced the thought that email is an old technology that is being replaced by better ways of communicating, like social media. This is true for both personal and business communicating. All you have to do is watch how people live their lives. They want immediate information and efficiency.

The Case for E-mail’s Replacement – Part 2

HRCT Instant Messaging and Chat

In Part 1, we talked about the youth and how using Yammer can benefit your business. If you missed it you can read about it by clicking here. Today we will talk about another inbox reduction technology – instant messaging. Look at your inbox for a minute and count how many e-mails you received that are a one sentence question? Now count how many replies are one word, “Thanks!” The chances are this count is very high. This is because people are looking for instant answers to questions.

If you had a quick question and needed an answer to right away, would you send an e-mail to them if you knew they were out of the office? Of course not. Typically you don’t know someone is gone unless they use an out-of-office response or simply don’t reply. That email was a waste of time. After you got their out-of-office response, you’d be sending your question on to someone else who could help.

What are the alternatives?

HRCT and Microsoft LyncIntroducing Microsoft Lync. Microsoft Lync is best known for its instant messaging, but it’s really much more than that. In the example above the process could have gone much different. First of all you’d see in your list who was at their desk and available because of the “presence” feature, and since your question was time sensitive, you would never send it to someone offline or away. Instead you’d send your message to someone online and available. You’d get their reply immediately; thus, eliminating several e-mails that would clutter your inbox.

Wait a minute, this communication is important, and you need a record of it! Good news! All chat dialogs are saved into a special folder in Outlook called “Saved Conversations.” Another thing worth mentioning is that Lync is completely controllable unlike public instant messaging. You can decided if users should be able to chat with folks from another company or which companies. You can do this with other organizations with Lync or even with Skype and other consumer IM products.

Wait, because there’s more. So far I’ve only focused on the ability to send instant messages, but Lync can make voice calls, video calls, host online meetings, share a virtual white board, share screens, and more.

How can you get Microsoft Lync?

Office365 HRCTIt’s available with many Office 365 packages and you can run it on premise with a few servers. Contact me for help on picking the right one for your business. Stay tuned for the 3rd and last installment of this 3 part series.

Microsoft Office 365 “Your complete Office in the cloud.”

Click the banner below to try Office 365 Business Premium Trial or Office 365 Enterprise E3 now FREE for 30 days. Click the Try Now button to start your trial.

HRCT Microsoft Office 365 Trial

If you want to learn more contact me, Eric O. Schueler, Senior V.P. of Information Technology(757) 399-3350

Stay tuned for Part 3 of this series where I will go over another technology called Microsoft SharePoint.


Posted by Eric O. Schueler, A+, MCP, MCSE, MCTS, CSSA, ACSP – Senior V.P. of Information Technology at HRCT. Eric has been in the business of providing IT and consulting for small and medium business for more than 15 years.

Hampton Roads Communication Technologies (HRCT) provides quality business telecommunications solutions, like Microsoft Lync and Office 365, computer and IT support and managed service agreements to companies and organizations throughout the United States, Mid-Atlantic and the Hampton Roads Virginia cities of Virginia Beach, Chesapeake, Norfolk, Portsmouth, Suffolk, Newport News and Hampton, north into Williamsburg and south into the Outer Banks of North Carolina. HRCT keeps your company connected with 24/7 emergency service.

Call today. (757) 399-3350

Images courtesy of by patrisyu