3 Rules For When to Create an Internal Business Email Address or Not

I recently had a customer asked me a question that prompted me to create this video. It is one of those question that comes up a lot of times for clients and they are often confused about the best way to approach it. I’ve seen a lot of people make mistakes around it.

The question goes something like “I have a contractor working for me for 3 months should I let them use their own Gmail account to access my files and do work for my business or should I give them an internal email address or not?”

Now there is essentially 3 rules you can apply to this problem to help you bring some clarity to the situation and whether you should give them a internal business email address or not.

1. Do they communicate with clients on your behalf?

If a contractor is not using email in your business to communicate with clients or extensively internally then there is no need to give them an internal email address. The reason is because you have a copy of half of their communications with you in your own email account. But as soon as they are communicating on your behalf with clients all having extensive email communications internally it is often better to create them an internal business email account.

2. Do they access, edit or create files within the company?

If you just giving a contractor one file to edit and they are sending it back it’s not really required that you create an internal email account for them. However if they are creating and editing files regularly within your enterprise especially in a cloud fashion it is important you give them an internal email address.

What may not be obvious is if you let them use a personal email account then they retain ownership of the files and is not possible for them to transfer ownership of the files to you within your organisation. If you cut them off or if they leave or if they choose to cut you off you do not have access to this content they created. To this situation it is always ideal to give them an internal email address so you have control of all of the content they create and you can migrate it to your own account.

3. Do you need to control the risk of their communications, files, IP or emails?

For more risk averse businesses or people that are concerned about it It is always better to simply create an account for them even if it is just for a week so you can control the content they work with and then still retain ownership of of it within your business.

If short, if the answer is yes to any of these questions, spent the time, spend the money and setup an email account for them to control what happens in your business.  Its the right thing to do.

So they are the 3 rules you can use to determine whether you should create an internal business email address or not for someone that comes working for you.

Hope you find that helpful.