Saturday, January 24, 2009

Cost cutting Idea

I work as a Developer in a reputed organization. Due to the ongoing financial crisis, declining operating margins and profits, companies are using every possible way to cut the expenditure. Starting from toilet-paper to air conditioner, you wouldn't know what will be off the store as every day passes. Some companies are even resorting to pay cuts. I thought of a noble idea which can be implemented in daily life by every individual to help save company's money just by refining you email sending habits. I would say its not all about money, it can save time of many people who rely on the fast speed of download for work.
I use email on the fly. I would be paralyzed if I don't check my email for more than a day. Could you give up email and go green ? That's not my intension! On an average I get 4 emails with attachments (photos, videos and what not - which I never bother to read or watch) per day. In my office every user has limited storage space on the server, so 10 people sending me forwards can surely fill up the allocated space for my account and all others important mails get bounced. Some of the obvious mistakes which can be avoided are
-> Do not send attachments in email unless necessary. Upload it in a central server if it is a official document and people who desire to read can download it. Believe me, 90% of the audience doesn't even read such emails.
-> Avoid HTML mails and fancy content as much as possible.
-> Use a Forgotten Attachment Detecter
-> Watch your habits. You can get into trouble.
If the file you're about to attach to your Internet email can be found elsewhere on the net, it maybe better to send the address of that location rather than attaching a copy of the file itself. If nothing else, this will save you some time because your system doesn't have to transfer the large attachment. Also, your recipient(s) can decide whether to download the file or not, where as if you had attached it, they may not have any option but to take the time to download it even if they don't want to. The organization can tie up with premium services like YouSendIt which does the heavy lifting for you. Another option is to use an alternative service like Domino Lotus for intranet email and Microsoft Outlook for other email and have strict attachment policies in place.
HTML Email isn't rich. Some of the things I hate the most is "Good Morning" mails. I don't care a shit about how many "Good Morning" mails I get. It takes me a whisker to delete all of them (add a rule), but at the end of the day, company is paying for all the stuff and everyone blames the corporates for cost-cutting measures. Here is a list of Common Email pitfalls and how to avoid them. It's hard to win an argument about saving bandwidth these days. Still, the next time you're about to send an email with large attachments, think twice!. In my next articles I will discuss about the Carbon footprint of email, benefits of using Google Apps and comparison of Outlook vs. Gmail.

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