Generation Gmail gives thumbs-down to work email

A survey has found that under-25s are spurning corporate mailboxes, sending work-related emails from their personal accounts. The youth of today, eh?

by Emma Haslett
Last Updated: 23 Feb 2011
MT has heard a lot of synonyms for the under-25s, but this is a new one even to us: according to a new survey by Mimecast, ‘Generation Gmail’ is getting frustrated at the way work mailboxes impose attachment and inbox size limits. And in an effort to cast off these corporate shackles, they're apparently employing unsavoury ‘workarounds’: 85% say they turn to their personal email accounts instead, sending work-related emails and attachments with gay abandon. This may make their lives easier - but having all that IP floating around in cyberspace is a bit dangerous for businesses...

The study, of 2,400 people, said the yoof of today’s ‘slapdash’ attitude to data security is causing problems for their employers. The results showed that under-25s send an average of 300 work-related emails a year from their personal account, with about half of those containing attachments – which means your corporate IP is sent off into cyberspace by your GG employees an average of three times a week. That means an increasing amount of IP stored on public servers.

Now, this might not be a social problem to rival, say, the burgeoning unrest in North Africa and the Middle East – but it does make a serious point. Having IP on servers you don’t control may be bad news. But as file-sizes get bigger and employees’ expectations change, imposing a size limit on mailboxes and attachments is becoming increasingly unrealistic. Granted, splashing out for new mail servers isn’t always an option, but there are other ways to do it: some web-based email services offer corporate options, too, where each user has over 25GB to play with. It takes a lot of Lolcats to fill that.

Then again, the survey also showed that more than a third of email coming into work inboxes isn’t actually work-related. So one option is to sit your younger employees down and tell them to stop gossiping – and then they might suddenly have a lot more room in their company inbox.

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