Businesses losing personal touch?

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Only 17% of workers in the south west prefer to meet face-to-face with colleagues, clients and suppliers while almost half choose to keep in touch via email, according to a new survey.

The figures come from the latest Close Brothers Business Barometer, a quarterly survey that canvasses the opinions of UK SME owners and business managers on a range of topical issues.

The research further revealed that 30% of employers in the south west believe that face-to-face communication is becoming less important in the modern workplace, with the majority claiming that other methods of correspondence, such as telephone and email are equally effective and keep costs down.

Regional sales director of Close Brothers Invoice Finance, Michael Williams, said: “As technology continues to evolve, the different ways to communicate appear almost endless. However, while it may seem quicker and easier to send an email or make a call, the value of face-to-face communication should not be forgotten.

“Business meetings help to build stronger and more meaningful relationships, showing your clients or colleagues that they are indeed worth your time and effort.”

Almost a fifth of local bosses polled claim they are too busy for face-to-face meetings, while a further 19% cited a lack of resources.