Xobni: Give your Outlook the power it deserves!

I am constantly scouring the web looking for new exciting tools for Windows that make things work faster, more efficiently and if possible make sitting at your computer all day a bit fun! Today’s tool does all three… In fact, Xobni just blew me away from the start and as I looked deeper and deeper, it just got better. Xobni is a free Outlook plug-in that (as the company’s mission states) allows you to take back your Inbox. Xobni is designed to allow you to find emails and attachments, manage relationships, and discover connections from social networks like Linked-In and Facebook. I installed the plug-in waited less than a minute and began to search for emails. The speed of the search was incredible, but that is only part of why Xobni was so cool. After entering a name in the search, Xobni brought up the contact information from my colleague showing his Linked-In profile. Below that were statistics, which included his Rank (in order of emails I receive and send to this contact), the number of emails in and out, and a bar graph showing the flow of email over a 24-hour period. Beneath that was the network this contact had with other contacts in my Outlook. This was great information since it is based upon emails that were received or sent with the other contacts also added. Just think of a business contact you have were you had an introduction made by a mutual associate and you cannot remember the person’s name or email address. If you have the original point of contact with emails sent and received chances are you will find the missing contact just by searching for that original point of contact. The next two segments are the conversation threads and files exchanged (anyone thinking compliance and e-discovery). This is often thought to be a problem for the enterprise until you find yourself needing to produce an email or an attachment that for your most important client or customer. Xobni found file attachments(automatically from Oct.2007)…impressive! The options include some more cool tools including ‘fun facts’ this included fact like the 11th most emailed contact, the fastest response to and from a contacts ranked, these statistics can be sent to the contacts as well. If I was not impressed, enough I then opened the Xobni analytics. The reports (which are instantly generated) include a daily summary of email traffic, time to respond, unique contacts, and follow up delay. These reports can be viewed by day, week, month, year, or hourly, daily, and monthly average. Below the chart is data that can be filtered for instance you can check the domains that emails came from and filter them. Or check filter emails by subject. Not only can you filter the emails you can click to instantly view the email. Now I know these tools are available for a premium for many organizations. But of the big commercial products I have worked with (and I have worked with a few) this one by far is the best I have seen. I would only hope that Xobni would consider a centralized version for Exchange Server. I think an Enterprise version of this based upon the existing plug-in would be invaluable to any organization. By the way if anyone from Xobni is reading this post,please consider it an invitation to build that product for us!! If I sound like a fan I am, definitely, check out Xobni and download the plug-in free at http://www.xobni.com/.

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