Dealing with email sucks. For those of us who are in a corporate or web-based business, it is the most common method of communication. How do you handle your very full inbox while getting other things done?
An even more common question is, how do you handle your inbox and get things done while you are not in the office?
Below are a few tips and applications to better help you manage your email from an Android phone while out of the office.
In your inbox
The first thing you will want to do is setup folders. If you are using Gmail, they are called labels. Setting up folders will help you keep things separated and make messages a little easier to find. In addition to using labels, filters for your emails will also help keep things sorted.
When working from your Android phone, it is easy to see the label attached to the email message if there is one.
Using IMAP instead of POP will give you much greater control over how you can handle your email. With most POP setups, when you handle an email on your phone, your desktop application doesn’t know about it. And with syncing messages, the best you can do is download and delete the messages from the email server.
If you are using something like Thunderbird or Outlook to manage your email, you may be okay with not having your filters and folders synced with the server. What if your company decides to switch desktop email programs? You will likely have to redo all of that hard work to re-organize everything.
If you use IMAP, your email server, desktop application and phone will all be in sync. You will be able to access the messages in all of your folders, move those messages from one folder to another and generally save yourself time when you get back to your computer.
Forward emails to one account
If you have several email accounts you manage, here is a link to an article on how to send and receive non-Gmail emails from Gmail. Having one spot to check all of your emails can be vital in keeping your inbox at bay.
Many times an application to can easily add all of the functionality you are looking for. Below is an alternative email application that offers more than the pre-installed Android email application. With the help of a couple add-ons, it walks all over the pre-installed app.
K-9 is a replacement email application for Android phones. Depending on the version of the Android OS and the make and model of device, the layout may look similar. In testing it though, it runs much faster and has more options to configure how it handled your incoming mail.
K-9 Data Killer
K-9 Data Killer lets you turn off the syncing if you use K-9. This add-on application would do the same thing as going into your Android settings and turning on and off the automatic sync for Gmail.
Email pop-up is another email add-on for K-9 email. What it does is show a pop-up for incoming emails. While this seems like it is more like a frivolous application that just takes up space, it is actually really useful.
Picture yourself having a really busy day and you are waiting for an important email. Instead of opening K-9 each time an email arrives, you can see who it’s from and a little bit of the text. Having these little pop-ups can actually save you a lot of time and battery by not needing to access your email application just to see who it is and what they want.
These are only a few of the vast number of applications and tips for handling email efficiently. Everyone has their own methods that work well for them, but many people struggle daily with their inbox. It never hurts to try a small change to see if it will improve your email productivity.
Leave a comment with your best email usage tip or favorite application.
image credit: RambergMediaImages