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Supporting Scotland's vibrant voluntary sector

Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations

The Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations is the membership organisation for Scotland's charities, voluntary organisations and social enterprises. Charity registered in Scotland SC003558. Registered office Mansfield Traquair Centre, 15 Mansfield Place, Edinburgh EH3 6BB.

Tools for keeping in touch

You will need to plan how your team will keep in touch with each other.

Virtual meetings can seem like an obvious answer but these can be fatiguing and time heavy so should be limited and be planned carefully. Text-based communication tools can be less demanding and more structured.  

Three key actions

  • Limit virtual meetings and plan them carefully
  • Take care with email overload
  • Use a communication platform, such as Slack or Teams


Hopefully your staff already understand good email practice but it can be useful to reiterate these regularly if inboxes are becoming overwhelming.

Useful guidance can include 

  • Use helpful subject lines so recipients immediately know what the email is about and whether they need to deal with it immediately 
  • Don’t use attachments – but instead use links to documents saved in shared spaces 
  • How to colour code, categorise and organise incoming emails 
  • Only use email for external communication

Communication platforms 

You can encourage good team communication by using platforms, such as Slack or Microsoft Teams. 

There are a variety of benefits, including 

  • Conversations are sorted into threads or channels, so it’s easier to keep up with discussions 
  • Users can tag specific people they want/need a response from 
  • Easier for part-time staff, or staff on leave, to get an overview of what has been happening when they return to work 
  • Team members can set when they are online or away, or head-down busy or in meetings.
  • Encourages your team to write shorter, more responsive messages. This ensures that team conversations flow more easily 
  • Encourages sharing of links to live documents, rather than attachments, which helps your team work more effectively 
  • Ensures key team conversations don’t get lost in the mix of people’s email inboxes.  
  • Keeps team chat out of  email inbox, so  easier to keep on top of external messages 
  • Emojis can be used for quick efficient responses and also to bring a bit of fun into team spirit.
Last modified on 29 November 2023
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