Secret ingredients to quality software


Do you think when replying to emails it's better late than never?

Last updated by Tiago Araujo on 25 Nov 2020 12:01 am (5 months ago) See History

You should always try and reply to emails within a timely period, but this is not always possible.

Sometimes people see an email 6 months old and just delete it because it's "too old" or refuse to reply because "the customer will think we're a joke taking this long to do something!" This is a great way to lose business, no matter how long it takes to do some tasks, it's always better to get it done. Of course, there are tasks that appear to be irrelevant with the passage of time, so reply and state that you don’t believe it is needed now.

Example: A product suggestion might take 12 months to get around to, but when it's done the customer should be informed and get a link to the new version - it's possible that their need still exists, and they'll know that their ideas and suggestions are not ignored.

delete outlook message button
Figure: Bad example - Hitting the “Delete” button without replying

Hi Bob, This is an old one. I tried to call you but you were not available. Please take a look and let me know if you want it actioned

Figure: Good example - at least asking the question

Hi Bob, Cleaning my inbox... Done - a few months ago

Figure: Good example - informing a task was already done

Hi Bob, Cleaning my inbox... This still looks relevant so I will start this old task today or tomorrow. Let me know if you don’t want that.

Figure: Good example - giving the option to do it or not

Hi Bob, Cleaning my inbox... I assume this is too late now. Sorry I missed this before.

Figure: Good example - informing a task is not relevant anymore

Reply to emails regardless of how long it takes to respond. It shows you value the sender's feedback.

Adam CoganAdam Cogan
Cameron ShawCameron Shaw

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