Weighing Shared Inbox Pros and Cons
Weighing Shared Inbox Pros and Cons
Lina Yakunina
Product Marketing Manager
/ Last updated:
November 1, 2022
Cut to the chase...
Get started with the world's first shared inbox that lives in Gmail.
Cut to the chase...
Turn your most effective emails into smart templates you can share with your team in Gmail.

Email is undoubtedly one of the communication tools most widely used in business. Despite the growing popularity of other communication platforms like Zoom and instant messaging, email is still the top choice for teams that need to communicate throughout the workday. Because this asynchronous communication mode remains so popular, you may find yourself seeking the best possible email solution for your team. 

Given the need for team collaboration as remote and hybrid working conditions evolve, a shared inbox solution may be just what you need. But it’s important to weigh shared inbox pros and cons before deciding to implement a solution for the long haul.

Why Shared Inboxes?

Shared inboxes are best for teams who need to manage a company email address together—for example, a sales@ or support@ account. Shared inboxes are collaborative by nature, offering teams many benefits, including centralized communication for groups of all sizes. Reading, responding to, and managing emails can be a cumbersome task that is difficult to get done quickly. Shared inboxes allow teams to tackle the incoming workload together. 

Standard email inboxes fall short because they lack transparency for teams addressing emails collaboratively. They often leave team members in the dark about an email’s resolution and they run the risk of duplicate responses due to unclear accountability. Shared inboxes help fix these issues by empowering teams to collaborate in order to remove silos, create transparency, and increase productivity. Every member can view the same emails and, in some cases, assign messages to ensure the right person addresses emails in a timely fashion. 

Shared Inbox Pros and Cons

Shared inboxes offer many advantages for teams of all sizes, but they are not without drawbacks, depending on the configuration of your particular solution. Every shared inbox solution varies, in terms of the features and tools available. Perhaps your team is already using a collaborative email solution, but the functionality is insufficient. Since email management is critical for many organizations, using the right email platform is essential. 

Some qualities in favor of and against (pros and cons) shared inboxes include: 

Pros

Centralized communication

All communication regarding the shared inbox address, for example, @sales, is located in one place.

Reduced redundancies

Shared inboxes reduce the need to forward and cc emails.

No email threads

Every employee receives emails simultaneously. There's no need to keep everyone in the loop with long email threads.

One login

Team members can address email inquiries together without the need to log into multiple accounts.

Clear accountability

Managing email together keeps each team member informed about who is working on which email, so there's no confusion.

Greater transparency

Regardless of your team’s department, your entire office can see incoming emails and their corresponding contents.

No tab switching

No more time wasted by switching back and forth between multiple accounts or logins.

Easy collaboration

Teams can work on emails together without the isolation or limitations of standard email. More team collaboration means shorter time-to-close for customer service teams, more creative problem-solving, and actionable marketing opportunities for sales/marketing.

There is no shortage of benefits for those using a shared inbox; however, not every feature is perfect for every team. For example, a shared inbox may not be an ideal solution if you are not comfortable with multiple team members having access to the same email address. In addition, many people do not use shared inboxes correctly, which can cause negative reactions to this type of email management. 

Here are some common cons, or arguments against, shared inboxes: 

Cons

Unclear accountability

Shared inboxes can help increase accountability or work against it. When used properly, a shared inbox simplifies workflows by enabling teams to see which member is working on what. If someone forgets to assign emails or an email is incorrectly sorted, team members can get confused or send duplicate responses.

Uneven workload

When multiple team members have access to the same inbox, it's easy to push the workload onto someone else. Negative implications can result if your team assigns emails incorrectly or if your platform lacks the capability to assign emails to other members.

Employee burnout

When team members take on too much of a shared inbox workload, they can easily begin to feel overworked. Team members may also feel confused about their roles and whose responsibility it is to follow up on emails.

No Data

It’s difficult to understand if a system is working or not if there is no data to analyze. Email analytics can help decision-makers understand if a shared inbox is the right solution for their business. However, many other email solutions do not offer this insight.

Shared inboxes work very well if used properly. If you are considering a shared inbox or find your organization suffers from a disorganized structure, here are some simple tips to help you get on top of your email management. 

Define Ownership Immediately

When setting up a shared inbox, define ownership among your staff immediately. Management can determine who will be invited to use the shared inbox. Notifying team members of their individual responsibilities and clearly defining those roles through training will help develop an organized infrastructure without bottlenecks. 

Gmelius, a shared inbox for Gmail, is designed to accommodate teams large and small. No matter how many members you invite, ownership and accountability remain crystal clear. How does it work? Once a team member is invited, they can access Gmelius from their personal Gmail account. There is no need for separate logins or passwords. From there, team members will see which emails are assigned to them each day in a folder labeled “mine.” 

Gmelius assigned label shared inbox.

In addition to clear labels, Gmelius also offers a way for teams to add statuses, tags, and email notes for further information or context. There is no confusion regarding responsibility, and teams can always lean on their colleagues for additional support. Gmelius is the ultimate collaboration platform, offering clear communication for everyone. 

Evenly Distribute Workload

Remote work presents many opportunities to leave employees feeling overworked. It is often difficult for employees to disconnect when their office also occupies their living space. While increased productivity may be high on the list of pros for remote working positions, the danger of feeling overworked is never far behind. Using an email platform that displays a team’s workload distribution can help avoid overloading employees with too many assignments. 

Gmelius is the perfect email solution that offers data on how much work is assigned to each employee. 

Gmelius team analytics.

Team analytics can be a game-changer for some organizations. They not only help managers see the number of emails assigned per user, but they also help fine-tune performance with details on each employee's strengths and weaknesses. For example, managers can see the number of emails closed and how long it took each team member to close them. Ensuring even workloads helps management avoid employee burnout and reduce stress. It also shows employees that you care about their well-being, ultimately creating a healthier work environment for everyone. 

In addition to team analytics, managers can also view email analytics with Gmelius for real-time data on each shared inbox.

Gmelius analytics.

Managers can filter by shared inbox or by a shared label. You can then filter analytics by workspace, period of time, or by tag. Managers can view actionable insights on specific projects or clients to improve internal operations and achieve project goals. 

When you conduct research before choosing a business email solution, you help set your team up for success. By using Gmelius as your shared inbox solution, you’ll receive all the benefits of a collaborative solution. 

Shared inbox pros and cons should be measured before selecting the best email solution for your team. Check out our features and integrations and learn how Gmelius is built to improve team communication and collaboration. Ready to get started? Sign up today!

The collaboration platform for Gmail.

Get Gmelius, it's free
Gmelius empowers your teams to collaborate, manage projects, serve your customers, and automate workflows without leaving Google Workspace - formerly G Suite - and your favorite daily apps.
Cut to the chase...
Get started with the world's first shared inbox that lives in Gmail.
Cut to the chase...
Turn your most effective emails into smart templates you can share with your team in Gmail.

Make Gmail your team's superpower!

Get the latest news from the Gmelian community and all the tips to make you happier at work!

Add to Gmail
linkedin
Join us on LinkedIn
No credit card required
G2 Leader with 400+ reviews

Interested in optimizing your business workflows but tired of newsletters?

We get that! Follow us on LinkedIn in order to stay up-to-date with more insights from industry experts, latest product developments and get a chance to win super prizes for your team.
linkedin
Follow us on LinkedIn

Continue Reading