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Large Mail File Crushes Network Technician!

Sounds like a headline from a supermarket-tabloid. But if your organization has been using e-mail for more than five years, then chances are there are more than a few people with mail files the size of Saturn. Being that large isn't bad if you are talking about a planet. It is another thing altogether if you are talking about a mail file.

The reason for this is simple. The mail file has become the filing cabinet of choice for millions of people in organizations throughout the world. Everyday, everyone sends and receives anywhere from a few e-mails to hundreds of e-mails. All e-mail systems make it easy to file incoming and outgoing messages. These are all good things until, five or so years later, you have a mail file that would be an embarrassment if you had to wear it around your neck.

If that wasn't bad enough, large mail files cause problems. Lots of problems. They are slower than fit and trim mail files. They crash more often. They take longer to back up. They don't work as well on laptop computers. And, worst of all, most of the information in large mail files doesn't belong there anyway.

Actually, most of the information in any mail file doesn't belong there anyway. Besides spam, bad jokes and Uncle Jack's cider recipe, what is in your mail file? Information about:
    • customer requests
    • customer issues
    • project reports
    • to do and action items
    • meeting minutes
    • product information
    • newsletters
    • project proposals
    • sales reports
    • lots of other organizational information

Wouldn't it make more sense to put all of the customer requests, issues and to do items in a central customer database?
Wouldn't it make more sense to put all of the meeting minutes, status reports and action items for your projects in one or more project databases?
Wouldn't it make more sense to put all of the sales and marketing brochures, press releases and product/service information in a central sales and marketing database?

With all these central, shared databases, all of the chaos in everyone's mail database goes away. With this innovative approach, the real information is in a shared database and everyone receives, in their mail file, notices of the new and pertinent information. So who needs to save notices of information already stored in a shared database? Nobody.

Sounds to good to be true? Well, we made it simple to get from here to there. Our Mail Integration solution makes it easy to file incoming and outgoing messages in customer databases, project databases, whatever databases. Our approach is based on the simple principal that there are two major classes of shared information:
    • Internal information that is never or rarely shared with those outside your organization.
    • Information that is shared with those inside and outside your organization.

Setting up an environment for the first class is easy. It is just a matter of setting up the shared database or databases and then making a soft change to your business processes so that everyone uses these databases instead of e-mail for sharing information. These shared databases typically have several easy to use features that simplify the process of notifying those who need to know about a particular new entry. As with any change, it will take a little while to get used to the new system. But once you do, you will be amazed at the results.

Setting up an environment for the second class is slightly more challenging. The reason for this is that most everyone outside your organization still uses e-mail to share information. So, that leaves you with two options. The first option, which is the preferred option, is to implement a shared database similar to the one described above, and let your customer/vendor/partner have secure, password protected access to the information in the shared database. Then, like the solution above, you can send them e-mail notices of new information. Likewise, they can enter information into this shared database and notify you of the new item via e-mail.

The second option for the second class is to use a shared database internally that has mail-enabled forms in it. So, instead of creating an outbound message to a customer/vendor/partner in your mail database, you create it in this shared database. Your customer/vendor/partner receives a normal e-mail with the pertinent information. Everyone internally sees the e-mail message in the shared database. No more copies to clutter up the mail files of ten other people. Incoming messages still flow into your Inbox. But now, when you file the message in a folder in your mail file, it is also filed in a same named folder in the appropriate shared database. Again, your external contact is using regular e-mail. Everyone inside your organization is using shared information databases.

Does your brain hurt yet? It takes longer to describe than it does to demonstrate. So call us today. We would be happy to discuss how our Mail Integration solution can make a difference at your organization.

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