April 27, 2017

How do business professionals communicate?


Business professionals use a wide variety of communications modes each day.  In preparation for our Workplace Productivity and Communications Technology Report, Webtorials surveyed our subscribers with specific questions about how they communicate and collaborate within their workplace environment.  Some of the results surprised us.

  • Telephone Call.  The fact that telephone calls captured the #1 spot is perhaps what surprised us the most, with 61% of the respondents indicating that telephone calls are either their first or second most frequent method of communicating.

    Note that this is how employees are communicating as dictated, in part, by their employer culture and communications infrastructure.  This is not necessarily employees' preferred method of communication which will be shared in a future post.

  • Email.  No surprises here.  For many reasons.

  • Face-to-Face.  Ugh, meetings.  We all know that a majority of an employee's time is spent (and often wasted) in endless meetings - both one-on-one and in groups. 

  • Chat/Text/IM.  In fourth place, we are not surprised.  It is difficult to have a complicated business conversation via chat, text, IM or SMS.

  • Video Call.  Quite surprised at the low volume of use in business communications -- still.  However, we have every reason to believe that as Millennials dominate the workforce, video calls will be the preferred method of communications.

As observed by Duncan Miller, Director, Global Public Relations at Mitel, "Email is a default setting for many.  It's a proven, easy way to communicate quickly one-to-one or one-to-many.  Ultimately we know everyone has a telephone and it's a pretty safe guess that a large majority of people use a device that has email capabilities. Yet, as the final report highlights, email and phone calls take up the majority of employees'  time and as a result are also the most unproductive.  I wonder if the Chat/Text/IM infrequency is a result of people not knowing they could have this functionality on their desktop/laptop." 

A trend to watch is whether video calls -- especially person-to-person video calls will eventually replace face-to-face communications, or at least merge to being one in the same.

Comments from the survey:
"I would like my organisation to embrace more adhoc and video conferencing solutions."
"The mode of communication needs to be matched to the task.  For example, chat is  good for quick answers, but not good for complex conversations."



For demographic information, please click here.  To access the companion Workplace Productivity and Communications Technology Report, click here.

This perspective is authored by Steven Taylor, Publisher and Editor-in-Chief at Webtorials, and is brought to you in part due to the generous support of:



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