Instant messaging is undoubtedly a useful tool for any business. And while the free services of Yahoo! and MSN and the like may seem appealing, there are several reasons why a corporate messenger is a better choice for some companies.
Complete Administrative Control
The flexibility of the corporate messenger is a very helpful feature for a business, allowing you to adjust it to fit your business rules. Running corporate messenger software through your own server allows you to customize the type of IM capabilities you want employees to have. Some software will even let you change the capabilities for each employee. You can restrict some employees to only instant messaging other employees in your company and allow others to have access to more people. Free IM services just don’t offer this extent of customization.
Most corporate messenger software allows users to send messages even when the other party is unavailable to chat. This increases efficiency because they don’t have to keep checking to see if the other person is available. Also, messaging activity is logged for each user, so you can keep track of how much messaging your employees are doing and make sure they are not wasting time by over-using it.
Unlike most free instant messengers, corporate messengers encrypt their IM’s. This is especially important if you use instant messaging with clients. To make sure your business has a reliable reputation, you will want to keep client information from leaking out. Also, all messages are recorded and stored on your server when you have a corporate messenger, so if something important is messaged, you don’t have to worry about it getting lost.
With so many problems that free IM clients come with, it’s easy to just want to give up on instant messaging in the workplace. Instead of throwing business IM-ing to the wind, though, find a corporate messenger that offers the above features so that you can safely and productively allow messenging in your company.