Email is growing by leaps and bounds, both in importance and volume. So it's not good news that nobody's in the wheelhouse.
Yet that's what turned up in a survey of 1,043 email users conducted by a the Association for Information and Image Management, which calls itself the Enterprise Content Management (ECM) association (an example of what happens when you seek to modernize your name but still own a longstanding brand and URL).
Results of the industry group's online survey taken in August and September 2006 reveal that most organizations aren't managing email at all. Aside from storing it for a given time period, most respondents reported relying on end users to decide what to keep and what to throw out. (See AIIM Posts Results.)
Further, what passes for email management could raise a regulator's hackles. Forget automated policies tied to full text searches. (See Stop That Email!.) For respondents in companies of all sizes, formal policies govern things like acceptable employee use of email systems, acceptable content of messages, mailbox size, and a company's ownership of the email. When it comes to setting rules for using email to transact business, discuss human resources issues, exchange confidential information, respond to requests from regulators or lawyers, the majority of respondents reported no policies in place.
Table 1: Does your organization have any policies restricting or limiting the use of e-mail for any of the following purposes? (Percentage of 1,043 respondents)
|Negotiating contracts and agreements
|Discussing HR issues
|Discussing operational or product strategies
|Exchanging confidential or sensitive information
|Responding to regulators
|Answering inquiries from customers
|Exchanging invoices, statements, and payment information
|Filing documents with official bodies
|Responding to litigation