Students Staff
University of Essex

July 13, 2015

Manage your email

Filed under: — admin @ 3:54 pm

Tips for senders

1. Delay Delivery – Outlook has the ability to automatically hold and then send your message at a later time. Click the Options tab and then the Delay Delivery button when composing your message to configure this. Note: You’ll need to make sure Outlook is open at the time you specify otherwise the message won’t be sent so this might mean leaving your computer on.

Why not follow the lead of the UECS Executive who agreed some time ago that emails should not be sent after 8pm or at weekends so that recipients did not feel the need to respond.

Staff who wish to work during the ‘quiet’ time set their emails to be delivered after 8.30am in the morning Monday to Friday.

Delay Delivery Screen Shot

Fig. 1: The Delay Delivery button in Outlook.

2. Work Offline – Outlook also has the ability to be open but not sending or receiving email by switching to Offline Mode. To enable this, click the Send/Receive tab and then Work Offline (see Fig. 3). You’ll know it’s enabled as the status bar will show a red cross and report when you were last working online (see Fig. 2).

Offline mode screenshot

Fig. 2: A red cross will indicate when you’re working offline.

During this time, you won’t receive any new emails and anything you send will be held in your Outbox folder. To start working online again return to the Send/Receive tab and click the Work Offline button again. Items in your Outbox will then be automatically sent.

Fig. 3: The Work Offline button in Outlook.

Fig. 3: The Work Offline button in Outlook.

If you’re using a mobile device, although there isn’t a specific ‘Work Offline’ option you can still stop your email app from sending and receiving when you don’t want it to. The instructions for doing this will vary from device to device but the basic steps for iOS and Android are as follows:

Android device using the Gmail App:

  1. From the home screen open Settings then tap Accounts.
  2. Select Exchange from your account list then Account Settings.
  3. Choose your University account from the next list and scroll down and select Sync Frequency.
  4. Change to Never to work offline.
    Note: Repeat the process but select Automatic (Push) at the final step to take yourself back online.

Apple (iOS) device using the Mail App:

  1. From the home screen open Settings then tap Mail.
  2. Tap Fetch New Data and then tap Exchange.
  3. Choose the Manual schedule option to work offline.
    Note: Repeat the process but select Push at the final step to take yourself back online.

3. Save as Draft – If you’ve finished composing your message but don’t think it’s the best time to send it, you can click the Save button. If you then close the message window you can look in your Drafts folder and send the message at a more suitable opportunity.

Save as draft screenshot.

Fig. 4: Click the Save button to create a new draft message.

If you’re composing your message on a mobile device, you can still save to your drafts folder but this won’t be synchronised to Outlook. This means that you’ll have to make sure that when you’re ready to send, you go back to the same device you were writing on to do so.

Tips for recipients

1. Turn off notifications – By default Outlook will try and alert you when a new message arrives. This isn’t always convenient so it’s a good idea to turn these notifications off and only check your email when convenient for you. To do this click File from the main Outlook window and then Options. Select the Mail section and then under ‘Message Arrival’ untick those you don’t require.

Fig. 5: Mail options in Outlook.

Fig. 5: Mail options in Outlook.

If you’re using a mobile device, then you should also be able to control the notifications triggered when a new email arrives. The instructions for doing this will vary from device to device but the basic steps for iOS and Android are as follows:

Android device using the Gmail App:

  1. From the home screen open Settings then tap Accounts.
  2. Select Exchange from your account list then Account Settings.
  3. Choose your University account from the next list and scroll down to ‘Notification Settings’ and set the options as you require.

Apple (iOS) device using the Mail App:

  1. From the home screen open Settings then tap Notifications.
  2. Select Mail and then turn toggle Allow Notifications to off.

Note: This will also stop you being notified about any other email accounts that you might also have setup in the iOS Mail app. You’ll need to use two different email apps if you’d like to receive notifications for one but not the other.

2. Move to Folder Rules – If you don’t want everything to be delivered directly to your Inbox then creating some simple rules in Outlook can help. To quickly create a rule based on an email you’ve already received, make sure the message is highlighted and click Rules then Create Rules… from the drop-down menu.

Fig. 6: The Create Rule... option in Outlook.

Fig. 6: The Create Rule… option in Outlook.

Using this wizard, you can easily create a new rule to move similar messages to a folder. If you’d like to setup some broader rules, click Advanced Options and choose from the full range of options.

Fig. 7: The Create Rule advanced options in Outlook.

Fig. 7: The Create Rule advanced options in Outlook.

Outlook doesn’t need to be left open for rules to work so your messages will continue to be sorted even when you’re out of the office. Most mobile devices only alert you when a message arrives in your Inbox so by using rules to divert messages to other folders, you can start to control which messages are important enough to get your attention when you’re away from your desk.

3. Work Offline – The same advice from the ‘Tips for Senders’ section about working offline might also be suitable for recipients who want to stop receiving new email and don’t find disabling notifications is sufficient.

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