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10 Unique Outlook Organisation Tips & Tricks for Outlook 2016 & Office 365

10 Unique Outlook Organisation Tips & Tricks for Outlook 2016 & Office 365

Many people use Microsoft Outlook to organize their emails and calendars, at home and at work. But people are not fully aware of its features. The following are a few tips which will help you to make appointments and email handling easier and quicker.

1. Avoid repeated typing

If you need to use the same text over and over again, you can save that as part of Quick Parts for insertion in emails. To do so, you need to highlight the text in the composer window, move to the Insert tab, click the Quick Parts dropdown then select Save selection to the Quick Parts gallery.

At a later time, when you start typing the phrase, you will see it as a pop up suggestion. Select it to insert it. You can select the text through the Quick Parts dropdown and right-click on the text for placing options or for editing and managing Quick Parts.

2. Group messages together or better yet, use MailSortr

If you are in a business where you receive a large number of emails, tracking down relevant messages can be a difficult task. Outlook can help in grouping emails into conversations so that a single click can show all related messages at one time. One can set this on a per-mailbox basis or globally by clicking the View tab and then Show as Conversations or by clicking the ‘Arrange by’ option at the top of the message list.

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A better solution is to use MailSortr to create a custom inbox and see only priority messages coming into your MailSortr Inbox. Without changing your Outlook setup, the MailSortr Inbox allows you to sort and filter important emails even if they are located in various folders so you don’t miss the important ones.

3. Automate recurring tasks and filing

If you are performing certain tasks regularly like inviting a group of recipients for meetings or forwarding incoming emails to a colleague, Quick Steps is there to the rescue which you can find as part of the Home tab. You can create a custom series of steps that can move, categorize, flag and delete messages with the single tap of the mouse.

MailSortr can also automatically file your emails for you. With the auto-response feature, email responses are set to automatically file to the folder of your choosing as soon as you send it out. This saves a lot of hours spent manual filing emails.

4. Deliver messages at a future date and time

If you want to share some news in the near future but not immediately then Outlook has a feature which lets you deliver emails at specific times. Type your email content, then select the Options tab and select Delay Delivery. This opens a dialogue box with a Do not deliver before option where the user can enter a time and date, then click Close.

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When you hit the Send button, your message will be held until the time specified by you for sending. In the Exchange server you can close Outlook but in case of IMAP or POP you have to keep the application open until the time specified for delivery.

5. Create search folders for commonly used searches

One can always search for anything in the current folder by typing in the search string in the search field above the messages. If you are looking for something in particular then you can simplify the task with a Search Folder. Create one by going to the Folder tab then click New Search Folder to create a new one. Choose from the available templates.

For example, there are ones such as mail marked as important, or finding mail from specific people, or even setting up your own search criteria using the Create a custom Search Folder option. The new search folder will appear in the folders list at the left-hand pane of the Outlook window. To view this folder, click on it to see emails meeting your selection criteria. The folder can be renamed by right clicking on it then selecting Rename Folder.

6. Block unwanted emails

If someone is spamming your inbox, one can block emails from such senders by clicking the Junk dropdown from the Home tab. After selecting Junk E-mail Options a new dialog box opens that will let you specify what is considered junk and what is not. One can even blacklist entire countries.

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If the sender is known but the conversation is irrelevant then click Ignore. The conversation and all future emails will be moved to the Deleted Items folder.

Alternatively, if the sender is known but the conversation is not urgent, then the ‘Mute’ feature in MailSortr will block that conversation from entering your inbox. Instead, you’ll get a notification of the emails that were Muted for you to view at a later time.

7. Filter emails to find relevant ones

Another way to find specific emails is to use the Filter Email dropdown option as part of the Home tab. Choose a menu option which instantly filters the mailbox displaying certain types of emails, such as within specific dates, with attachments, or just unread.

MailSortr is another tool that can help declutter your Outlook inbox and remove emails that do not require your immediate attention. By selecting the Remove and Remove Thread buttons, you can easily remove unimportant emails from the MailSortr Inbox in a few clicks.

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8. Create new appointments and emails instantly

One can create new appointments, emails, contacts using the New Items option on the Home tab. If one you want to open the Outlook interface, just right-click on Outlook’s icon to create any of these new items.

9. Send SMS texts from Outlook

One can send SMS text messages directly to contacts. One needs to register with a third-party messaging service. To use this option, click the New Items dropdown in the Home tab, then select Text Message. A new dialog box will open. Then click to find a text messaging service for your mobile operator.

10. Encrypt email messages

One can even encrypt the attachments and the text, so only recipients with a shared key can read them. To use this, go to the Trust Center Settings under FileàOptionsà Trust Center and select E-mail Security. Then enable encryption and digital signing by clicking the relevant check boxes. You will need to create a digital ID. Then click Get a Digital ID to see providers, which provide free email certificates.

These Outlook tips will be incredibly useful and help you control what matters to you. Combined with MailSortr, an important Outlook management tool, you can make your Outlook Inbox exactly the way you want it to be. You can keep track of important emails so that they aren’t missed and free yourself of unwanted emails. You will definitely be more productive because of it.

Featured photo credit: Bench Accounting via images.unsplash.com

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Abhay Jeet Mishra

Writer at Lifehack & Enterested.com

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Published on September 20, 2018

11 Google Chrome Apps and Features to Help You Get More Done with Less Effort

11 Google Chrome Apps and Features to Help You Get More Done with Less Effort

In today’s fast-paced and never-ending busy world, we are overwhelmed by tasks that need to be completed by tight deadlines. With so much technology it is difficult to find the right tools to help boost our efficiency. And, many tools get obsolete so its essential to stay up-to-date to know when you will have to make adjustments to these tools. Independently of where you work, there’s a good chance that you have to be working on a PC or a laptop.

Do you are feel like you do not have enough time, or cannot accomplish much as of late? It is recommended to take a step back and look at the big picture. Also, you want to explore new and innovative ways to improve productivity.

In this article, I outline 11 features and apps within the Chrome browser that can help you do just that.

Minimizing Tabs

Let’s face it we all have more than a dozen tabs opened on our computers. One neat trick to still keep most of them open is to turn them into pinned tabs. On Google Chrome you can right-click the tab and select “Pin Tab” option. This turns the tab into an icon enabling you to continue multitasking.

Pinning a tab anchors the tabs on the left of your toolbar; a great benefit of the “Pin Tab” feature is that you can’t close these tabs accidentally since the “X” disappears after pinning them.

Incognito Mode

Google Chrome is a very easy-to-use and intuitive. But, Google does collect our browsing data; so to remedy this, you can use Incognito Mode. This feature does not keep your browsing or download history. You can enable or access it in three different ways:

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  1. Press Ctrl/Command+shift+N
  2. Select File Menu and choose New Incognito Window
  3. Download extension New Incognito Window

This feature is very handy if you’d rather not have your browsing history stored and utilized for future advertisement or suggested pages.

Save Webpages as PDF Files

Have you ever browsed interesting or important information and then forgot to bookmark or save it in “favorites”, making it impossible to find again? Chances are you have done this on a number of occasions.

Thankfully, there is an easy solution. You can save webpages as PDF files. On your keyboard, press control/command+p and you will be able to save webpages as PDFs.

Open Recently-closed Tabs

Ever had dozens of tabs opened and all of a sudden your browser shuts down? It has probably happened to all of us. You can easily recover all of your tabs using two approaches. Don’t panic if this happens because there is a workaround and solution for it.

One is by pressing Ctrl/CMD+Shift+T.

The other approach is to click on the three vertical dots on your browser and hover over “History”.

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Solve Mathematical Problems

Google’s Chrome browser doesn’t just search for relevant and updated information. It is also capable of performing some mathematical problems. Within the omnibox (Chrome’s address or URL bar), you can perform mathematical exercises.

For example, if you are struggling with percentages you can search 20 percent of x amount and it will instantly provide a result. Pretty handy, right?!

Play Media Files

Are you frequently met with difficulties when playing or watch a video files? Well, once again Chrome comes to the rescue. You can can listen or play videos from all sorts of movie or music files (mp3, mp4, .mov, .mkv, .ogv, .webm, .wav, etc.) by simply dragging the file into the search bar.

In addition, you can view images, PDF files and Microsoft Office files, too.

Navigate Swiftly Between Tabs

With all of those tabs opened comes great navigation responsibilities. Rather than clicking through every tab, you can use shortcut keys like Ctrl+Tab to navigate all of the different tabs. Also, you are able to navigate to the first tab by pressing Ctrl-1, Ctrl-2, and so on. If you want to switch to the very last tab, press Ctrl-9.

Stay Focus(e)d

Computers nowadays have awesome capabilities.

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Sometimes we like to get work done, but let’s face it, we’re all human. We sometimes procrastinate by visiting a website we really like, or maybe take a break with watching a flick on Netflix, a video on YouTube or browsing Facebook.

With Chrome’s StayFocusd extension, you can truly stay focused and get more done in less time.

This extension naturally helps you stay more productive by limiting the amount of time you spend on websites. You can set the time and it will automatically block those sites after a certain period.

Grammarly for Editing

Grammarly is a must have, and it’s really a complete powerhouse. Grammarly helps you check your grammar and spelling for everything you write online.

You can use it professionally or as a student, which will make the editing process much easier and more efficient. Furthermore, it can automatically check for typos when you send an email, type a Tweet, or post a Facebook comment. It’s like having your own personal copyeditor!

Loom

There are times that words in an email or written text in a chat app will just not convey the right meaning.

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There is a saying that a picture is worth a thousand words. Well, the same is true of videos.

With Loom, you can capture, narrate and immediately share video recordings of your screen, which will help coworkers understand issues you are facing, or to easily convey an explanation on screen. Plus, with video you will be able to easily walk people through a process, and you can use it to create simple how-to videos.

Chrome Calendar Extension

No matter what your level of responsibility is at your job, Google Calendar is another essential resource to have at your fingertips.

Specifically, you can have this extension added as an icon in the toolbar of your browser, which I highly recommend. Once you add the extension to your browser, you can check for upcoming events with a single click without leaving your current page.

Final Thoughts

Google Chrome has definitely evolved from its inception. As you can see you have a very powerful tool that comes as a free installation and is loaded with dozens of capabilities. The above listed Chrome apps can resolve some of the most common obstacles to your time management and productivity.

Featured photo credit: Andrew Neel via unsplash.com

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