It’s been scientifically proven [1] that a higher email workload equals higher levels of stress. We know that emails are a necessary element of business life, but there are ways in which you can make it easier on yourself. You can try to prevent the stress that a build-up of emails causes by managing your business emails effectively. Make a start with our five email management strategies to make your working-day easier.

1. Allocate time in your day to deal with business emails

The first step is to set aside time in your working day to tackle emails. You might need several points of time throughout the day to check your inbox. Choose times in the day that will work well for you. As soon as you get into work probably isn’t the best time to start, you could get distracted and spend longer than necessary dealing with emails that aren’t a priority. Be strict with yourself; make sure you move on to another task once your allocated email time is over.

2. Use email technology to your advantage

The majority of business email providers, such as Gmail, Outlook or Webmail providers [2] have the ability to set rules and preferences within your email account. You can use these rules to filter emails before they even hit your inbox. Choose the way you filter and file your emails to suit you. For example, you could filter by sender and set up folders for each person, filter and file by subject matter or by email priority; the choice is yours. The tools are all there to make management of your emails more efficient.

3. Streamline your inbox

Limit the number of emails that sit in your inbox, the previous step will help you to cut them down somewhat. Be ruthless in deleting irrelevant emails and filing away the more important ones. Unsubscribe from newsletters or email marketing that is not of interest to you or is no longer useful. Select a business email provider with antivirus or spam protection [3]. This will prevent unsolicited mail from clogging up your inbox. The fewer emails you have, the less daunting a task email management will seem.

4. Create business email templates

If you find yourself writing the same email on a regular basis, create and save templates for these email responses. You will find it quicker and easier to respond to similar emails that often appear in your inbox and you’ll save time writing the same thing over and over.

5. Keep email content short and sweet

Try to keep email conversations to a minimum; business emails should be just that, business-like. Keep the content polite and try to cover the essential information only. By limiting conversation within your emails, you are likely to curb the number of emails that go back and forth. If you want to catch up with a colleague, you could grab a coffee and have a chat face to face.

There you have it, five email management best practices that will simplify your working day.

[1] https://www.emerald.com/insight/content/doi/10.1108/ITP-10-2017-0321/full/html

[2] https://www.names.co.uk/email-hosting

[3] https://www.names.co.uk/email-hosting/features/anti-virus