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This is an IELTS writing task 2 sample answer essay on the topic of online communications and meetings from the real IELTS exam.

The same topic came up on IELTS about a year ago and then again very recently.

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Dave

IELTS Essay: Online Communication

In many workplaces, online communication is now more common than face-to-face meetings.

Do the advantages of this trend outweigh the disadvantages?

Offices around the world these days are opting to hold meetings online to save both time and money. In my opinion, despite the potential loss of a strong rapport between co-workers, this is a positive considered as a whole.

Critics of these changes often point to its effect on interpersonal relationships in an office. The meeting itself is largely secondary as most information can be communicated just as easily through an online teleconference or an email. True value lies, instead, in the moments before, during and after meetings when colleagues have a chance to socialise or exchange ideas about what they have been working on. This is the reason some companies, famously Apple and Pixar, designed their offices to maximise opportunities for employees to chat with individuals from different departments. The strengthening of social bonds and the sharing of novel perspectives can both boost morale and help drive innovation.

Nonetheless, meeting online is more convenient for employees and saves money for companies. When employees must come in for their work already, many of the benefits listed above are already present and meetings mainly serve as a distraction. Remote workers will also appreciate not having to commute for a short meeting, especially if they have family or other working commitments. Moreover, companies benefit from the time that employees save because it allows them to better allocate their labour towards actual work, thereby increasing efficiency. There are also a range of costs that can be reduced once online communications become standard such as leasing less office space and savings related to office expenses and employee perks.

In conclusion, though communicating online can be detrimental to personal relationships in an office, they offer thoughtful conveniences to employees and help cut costs. Companies ought to shift as much training to online as possible.

Analysis

1. Offices around the world these days are opting to hold meetings online to save both time and money. 2. In my opinion, despite the potential loss of a strong rapport between co-workers, this is a positive considered as a whole.

  1. Paraphrase the overall essay topic.
  2. Write a clear opinion. Read more about IELTS introductions here.

1. Critics of these changes often point to its effect on interpersonal relationships in an office. 2. The meeting itself is largely secondary as most information can be communicated just as easily through an online teleconference or an email. 3. True value lies, instead, in the moments before, during and after meetings when colleagues have a chance to socialise or exchange ideas about what they have been working on. 4. This is the reason some companies, famously Apple and Pixar, designed their offices to maximise opportunities for employees to chat with individuals from different departments. 5. The strengthening of social bonds and the sharing of novel perspectives can both boost morale and help drive innovation.

  1. Write a clear topic sentence with your main idea at the end.
  2. Explain your main idea.
  3. Develop your argument.
  4. Use specific examples.
  5. State the results of your example to develop it.

1. Nonetheless, meeting online is more convenient for employees and saves money for companies. 2. When employees must come in for their work already, many of the benefits listed above are already present and meetings mainly serve as a distraction. 3. Remote workers will also appreciate not having to commute for a short meeting, especially if they have family or other working commitments. 4. Moreover, companies benefit from the time that employees save because it allows them to better allocate their labour towards actual work, thereby increasing efficiency. 5. There are also a range of costs that can be reduced once online communications become standard such as leasing less office space and savings related to office expenses and employee perks.

  1. Write another topic sentence with a clear main idea at the end.
  2. Explain the main idea.
  3. Develop it.
  4. Switch to a second advantage.
  5. Develop that advantage fully.

1. In conclusion, though communicating online can be detrimental to personal relationships in an office, they offer thoughtful conveniences to employees and help cut costs. 2. Companies ought to shift as much training to online as possible.

  1. Summarise your ideas and repeat your opinion.
  2. Add a final thought. Read more about conclusions here.

Vocabulary

What do the words in bold below mean?

Offices around the world these days are opting to hold meetings online to save both time and money. In my opinion, despite the potential loss of a strong rapport between co-workers, this is a positive considered as a whole.

Critics of these changes often point to its effect on interpersonal relationships in an office. The meeting itself is largely secondary as most information can be communicated just as easily through an online teleconference or an email. True value lies, instead, in the moments before, during and after meetings when colleagues have a chance to socialise or exchange ideas about what they have been working on. This is the reason some companies, famously Apple and Pixar, designed their offices to maximise opportunities for employees to chat with individuals from different departments. The strengthening of social bonds and the sharing of novel perspectives can both boost morale and help drive innovation.

Nonetheless, meeting online is more convenient for employees and saves money for companies. When employees must come in for their work already, many of the benefits listed above are already present and meetings mainly serve as a distraction. Remote workers will also appreciate not having to commute for a short meeting, especially if they have family or other working commitments. Moreover, companies benefit from the time that employees save because it allows them to better allocate their labour towards actual work, thereby increasing efficiency. There are also a range of costs that can be reduced once online communications become standard such as leasing less office space and savings related to office expenses and employee perks.

In conclusion, though communicating online can be detrimental to personal relationships in an office, they offer thoughtful conveniences to employees and help cut costs. Companies ought to shift as much training to online as possible.

Answers

these days nowadays

opting choosing

hold meetings online have meetings over the internet

despite regardless of

potential loss possible disappearance

strong rapport good relationship

co-workers colleagues

considered as a whole on level

critics detractors

point to argue about

interpersonal relationships relations between people

largely secondary less important

just as easily equally simply

teleconference talk alone

true value lies actual importance comes from

instead actually

colleagues have a chance co-workers get the opportunity

socialise talk in a friendly way

exchange ideas share views

famously well-known

designed made for

maximise opportunities increase the chances

chat with talk to

different departments other parts of the company

strengthening making stronger

social bonds interpersonal relationships

sharing of novel perspectives exchanging new views

boost morale increase happiness

drive innovation make more creative

nonetheless regardless

convenient useful and easy

benefits listed above advantages I wrote about before

already present exist now

mainly serve mostly are

distraction draws away your focus

remote workers people who work from home

appreciate be grateful for

commute travel in to work

commitments obligations

better allocate divert towards more useful areas

towards going in that direction

thereby increasing efficiency as a result increasing productivity

range of costs many different expenses

standard common

leasing less office space renting fewer offices

office expenses costs in the office

employee perks privileges for workers

detrimental to can hurt

thoughtful considerate

help cut costs reduce money spent

shift change to

Pronunciation

ðiːz deɪz 
ˈɒptɪŋ 
həʊld ˈmiːtɪŋz ˈɒnˌlaɪn 
dɪsˈpaɪt 
pəʊˈtɛnʃəl lɒs 
strɒŋ ræˈpɔː 
kəʊ-ˈwɜːkəz
kənˈsɪdəd æz ə həʊl
ˈkrɪtɪks 
pɔɪnt tuː 
ˌɪntəˈpɜːsən(ə)l rɪˈleɪʃənʃɪps 
ˈlɑːʤli ˈsɛkəndəri 
ʤʌst æz ˈiːzɪli 
ˈtɛlɪˈkɒnfərəns 
truː ˈvæljuː laɪz
ɪnˈstɛd
ˈkɒliːgz hæv ə ʧɑːns 
ˈsəʊʃəlaɪz 
ɪksˈʧeɪnʤ aɪˈdɪəz 
ˈfeɪməsli 
dɪˈzaɪnd
ˈmæksɪmaɪz ˌɒpəˈtjuːnɪtiz 
ʧæt wɪð 
ˈdɪfrənt dɪˈpɑːtmənts
ˈstrɛŋθənɪŋ 
ˈsəʊʃəl bɒndz 
ˈʃeərɪŋ ɒv ˈnɒvəl pəˈspɛktɪvz 
buːst mɒˈrɑːl 
draɪv ˌɪnəʊˈveɪʃən
ˌnʌnðəˈlɛs
kənˈviːniənt 
ˈbɛnɪfɪts ˈlɪstɪd əˈbʌv 
ɔːlˈrɛdi ˈprɛznt 
ˈmeɪnli sɜːv 
dɪsˈtrækʃən
rɪˈməʊt ˈwɜːkəz 
əˈpriːʃɪeɪt 
kəˈmjuːt 
kəˈmɪtmənts
ˈbɛtər ˈæləʊkeɪt 
təˈwɔːdz 
ˈðeəˈbaɪ ɪnˈkriːsɪŋ ɪˈfɪʃənsi
reɪnʤ ɒv kɒsts 
ˈstændəd 
ˈliːsɪŋ lɛs ˈɒfɪs speɪs 
ˈɒfɪs ɪksˈpɛnsɪz 
ˌɛmplɔɪˈiː pɜːks
ˌdɛtrɪˈmɛntl tuː 
θɔːtfʊl 
hɛlp kʌt kɒsts
ʃɪft 

Vocabulary Practice

Remember and fill in the blanks:

Offices around the world t____________s are o_______g to h____________________e to save both time and money. In my opinion, d________e the p_______________s of a s________________t between c_______________s, this is a positive c_________________e.

C___________s of these changes often p_________o its effect on i_________________________s in an office. The meeting itself is l________________________y as most information can be communicated j________________y through an online t________________e or an email. T______________________s, i_________d, in the moments before, during and after meetings when c_________________________e to s_____________e or e_________________s about what they have been working on. This is the reason some companies, f___________y Apple and Pixar, d___________d their offices to m_________________________s for employees to c_____________h individuals from d__________________________s. The s___________________g of s_________________s and the s____________________s can both b_______________e and help d_________________n.

N________________s, meeting online is more c________________t for employees and saves money for companies. When employees must come in for their work already, many of the b___________________e are a__________________t and meetings m_________________e as a d____________n. R__________________s will also a_______________e not having to c_____________e for a short meeting, especially if they have family or other working c________________s. Moreover, companies benefit from the time that employees save because it allows them to b________________e their labour t____________s actual work, t______________________________y. There are also a r______________s that can be reduced once online communications become s_____________d such as l___________________________e and savings related to o_______________s and e_________________s.

In conclusion, though communicating online can be d_______________o personal relationships in an office, they offer t______________l conveniences to employees and h_______________s. Companies ought to s_______t as much training to online as possible.

Listening Practice

Learn about a related topic below:

Reading Practice

Read about why people hate meetings here:

https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/304610

Speaking Practice

Practice with the following speaking topics from the real IELTS speaking exam:

Work

  1. Do you work or are you a student?
  2. What do you like about your work?
  3. What has changed at your work since you started?
  4. Do you like to work in the morning or afternoon?

Writing Practice

Write about the following related topic then check with my sample answer below:

Many people try to balance work and other parts of their life. However, this is very difficult to do.

What are the problems associated with this?

What is the best way to achieve a better balance?


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