10 Ways To Save Time In Microsoft Outlook

Looking for ways to save time and be more productive when using Microsoft Outlook? If so, we can help.

10 Ways To Save Time In Microsoft Outlook

Looking for ways to save time and be more productive when using Microsoft Outlook? If so, we can help. Finding ways to speed up tasks so that you have more room in your schedule is a top priority for many people. In this video, we discuss different tips and tricks you can use to save time in Microsoft Outlook.


These are the ten best tips and tricks for saving time in Microsoft Outlook.


Rules can help you automate manual actions that would usually take up time. They are instructions that you give to Outlook so that it can process messages in a set way. With this feature, you can send messages to folders, assign categories, and delete or forward them.

To create a rule, right-click your example message, hover over “rules”, select “create a rule”, choose your criteria, rename the rule, and hit “finish”. There is also a “create a rule” button under the home tab. To have your rule search for specific messages, use advanced options. If you need to change a rule, go to “rules” and select “manage rules”. Messages that already exist can have rules applied to them as well.

Favorite Folders

Favorite folders help you keep track of your most important folders, separating them from the others. These folders are stored above navigation, making them easy to get to. To create a favorite folder, drag it to the favorites area or right-click on the folder. Like other folders, favorite folders can be rearranged or removed at any time by right-clicking on them. To move a message to a favorite folder, just drag it there.

Convert Email To A Task

To make creating a to-do list easier, convert emails into tasks. To convert a message, right-click the flag next to the message, set the time you want to do the task (custom times are available), and add a reminder. You can also open the message, click the “follow up” drop-down, set the time, and add the reminder. You can also convert it by dragging the message to the task area. To keep track of messages you’ve already handled, move the email to another folder.

Convert Email To An Appointment

Converting emails to appointments can save you lots of time when scheduling. To use this feature, hold down the right-click on the mouse while hovering over the message, drag to your calendar, and select the appointment type. If others need to attend as well, convert the appointment into a meeting.

Read Aloud

Having read aloud read messages to you is a great way to multitask. Read aloud is called immersive reader in Outlook for the web. To enable read aloud, go to “file”, click “options”, select “ease of access” and then “show read aloud”. To use this feature, select “read aloud” in the message tab. When using read aloud, a toolbar will be shown. This toolbar can play or pause the audio. You can also change the speed of read aloud or the voice used. To start listening from a specific point, double-click the word you would like to start at.


With dictation, you can say what you would like to send, and Outlook will transcribe the message for you, once again making multitasking easy. This feature is only available to Microsoft 365 subscribers with the Outlook desktop app.

Dictation is located under the message tab, within the dictate dropdown. Don’t forget to say which punctuation you would like to use (“period” for .) when dictating. After you have finished, make any necessary edits. Dictation can be used in the subject line of your message or the body.

Delay Delivery

Delay delivery can be helpful when working odd hours. This feature allows you to write a message at any time, but send it to the recipient later. With delay delivery, you could write a message to Jessica at 1:00 am on Tuesday and have it delayed until 8:00 am Wednesday morning. To write a delayed delivery message, create or reply to an email, click “options”, select “delay delivery”, choose “options”, and send the message.

Quick Steps

Quick steps let you apply multiple actions to a message with just one click. For example, you could have a message from Trisha sent to your Planning folder and forwarded to David all at once. Quick steps are located on the home tab of your ribbon. Quick steps are not always active, they are only used when you initiate them. They can also be created or deleted at any time.

To make a quick step, go to “quick steps” under the home tab, click “create new”, name the quick step, choose the actions that it will complete, add actions as needed, and “finish”. If you need to make a shortcut for it, you can also do that at this point. You can also change the order of your quick steps, edit a quick step, and duplicate or delete one by going to “manage quick steps”.

Quick Parts

Quick parts are similar to templates. They allow you to save parts of messages you’ve already created to use in the future. To create a quick part, start a new message, type and edit the message, highlight the section you would like to make into a quick part, select “insert”, and go to “quick parts”. Then, click “save section to quick part gallery”, give it a name, pick the category it will go in, add a description, and choose your options.

To use a quick part, have your cursor in the body of the message, go to “insert”, then “quick parts”, select the one you’re using, and edit as needed. To replace a quick part, repeat the above steps and select “replace quick part” when prompted by Outlook. Hover over the existing quick part, right-click, and select “organize and delete” to replace one as well. You can use two or more quick parts in one message as well.

Quick Access Toolbar

With the quick access toolbar, you can assign multiple actions to one button. The toolbar is located above the ribbon, but can also be placed below the ribbon by selecting the drop-down and clicking “show below the ribbon”. Each area of Outlook has its own version of the toolbar, making it very customizable for your needs.

To customize the toolbar, click the drop-down next to the undo button and choose which features you would like to show on it. Some of the features already mentioned, like delayed delivery or quick parts, are included as well. To change the order of features shown or which ones are available, select the drop-down and go to “more commands”. You can also right-click on the toolbar and choose “customize quick access toolbar”.

Are You Ready To Start Saving Time In Microsoft Outlook?

Microsoft Outlook is a great tool if you know how to use it. And with these ten tips and tricks, you are on your way to saving more time than ever when using this program. Do you have more questions about how to better use Microsoft Outlook? Reach out to us so that we can assist you. At Advantage Industries, our IT professionals are prepared to help with all of your Microsoft Outlook needs and more. Contact us online or by phone today.

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Keith Heilveil

In 1999 Advantage Industries was created to protect and promote our client’s success through the use of innovative technology. Our company is a full services technology firm that provides computer network support and solutions, managed services, cybersecurity, and custom application development for small and medium businesses in the Maryland, DC, and Virginia areas.

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Tim Happel

Tim Happel

Sr. Director of Sales, PMP

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