Before we talk about the pros and cons of instant messaging for business we must know what is instant messaging. Instant messaging or IM can be defined as a form of exchanging text messages in real-time. These messages can be sent or received by an individual or a group of people to one or more than ne people by using a public or private instant messaging network. But both, the sender and the receiver should use the same network to share the messages. The message will be received instantly on the medium of communication of the recipient like Smartphone, tablet, laptop or desktop. The messages are transmitted instantly with the help of internet systems or wireless phone signals through a software program designed especially for this purpose like ezTalks Cloud Meeting etc. Initially the functioning of IM networks was confined to exchange text messages only but today you can also use them for transmitting audios, graphics and videos along with organizing video conferencing between several participants.
Cost Effective Communication:
Instant messaging services allow you to communicate with anyone situated in any part of the world without the usual call tariffs for international or long distance calls. The businesses can communicate with the foreign suppliers or their staff members situated in foreign countries by sending them instant messages or organizing video conferencing or sharing presentations with them. In this way it reduces the cost of conducting business on international level.
Uses of instant messaging for business allows you to communicate with other people, anywhere in the world, in real-time unlike the response of emails for which you have to wait until your message is downloaded from the server by the receiver. For businesses it is one of the main advantages of IM. You can instantly send and receive the real-time messages faster than emails, if the person you have contacted appears online. Businesses can also use it to get faster response from their customers and clients regardless of their location in this world. Along with external communication instant messaging can also be used for internal communications in a business establishment.
Building A Team:
In order to build a team in a workplace, when the members of the team are located at different locations, instant messaging can also be used as a tool to let them work collectively. In such situation telephonic communication may not be really effective as words can be overheard or misunderstood. Instant text messaging can be a fool proof way to communicate your message to the receiver in real-time without any disturbance.
Real time collaboration experience provided by instant messaging is much more convenient than using a phone for conveying your message instantly. You as well as your recipient can do several other works while communicating through their respective laptops. But both of you will have to leave all other works to talk to each other on a phone call.
Reduction of Spam Messages:
Your inbox can be cluttered with a number of spam messages. It will not be possible when you are using instant messaging software like ezTalks Cloud Meeting or any other else for your business deals.
Record keeping function is also offered by some of the instant messaging software tools which can be saved as archives to be used as reference whenever required.
Everything that has several advantages usually has some disadvantages also. Some of the disadvantages of instant messaging are briefly described her under for your consideration.
Lack of Security:
There can be security threat for your business with instant messaging as you will be using a third party application for this purpose. Sometimes instant messaging software is attacked by hackers to steal the data or intrude the businesses attached to it. In such condition your files shared through them can be accessed by the hackers.
It is one of the main drawbacks of instant messaging as you will be distracting the respondent from his/her routine work in order to get instant response from him/her. In this way it can reduce the productivity of your respondent.
While using instant messaging software you will have to find one that is compatible with your network which is a difficult process in the presence of so many software options available online these days. You will have to install instant messaging software that is compatible with multiple networks if you want to communicate with the users of different networks. Finding a program that can simultaneously access several networks like ezTalks Cloud Meeting etc. can also be a possibility in this regard.
The instant messaging software you are using for your business instant messaging can be affected from various spyware and viruses which can also be harmful for your business network.
Thus after going through the pros and cons of instant messaging for business it can be concluded easily that its advantages can easily offset its disadvantages. But you will have to be careful while selecting instant messaging platform for your business.