How to Prevent Outlook Overload with SharePoint

Written by Andy Dale. Posted in Administration & Infrastructure

First day back after the Christmas Holidays and many are met with a rather large Inbox, a disease that hits people all over the world at this time of year (as well as the festive-flu and watching 'Santa Claus the Movie' for the tenth time) even with all the Spam Filters working in overdrive the email mountain just keeps growing. How can SharePoint help prevent this overload? ...

Like many other SharePoint Consultants I need to remain up-to-date with all the advances in SharePoint so I join many SharePoint distribution lists including the excellent SharePoint UK Usergroup (http://www.suguk.org). While these are all great sources of information it can very easily lead to Email Hell which is why SharePoint can be so useful.

From SharePoint Central Administration you can set your SharePoint to receive emails from ‘Operations’ – ‘Incoming Email Settings’. Just make sure that ‘Enable sites on this Server to receive Emails’ is set to ‘yes’. Now when you create a ‘Document Library’ you will get the option ‘Incoming Email’ which can be set to allow the ‘Document Library’ to receive emails. All you have to do is give it an email address to use. This will be an internal address that all your internal mail users will be able to send emails to.

How will this help your festive email overload? Well, before Christmas you could have setup a rule on my Outlook or on my Exchange server to move all messages from one of my SharePoint groups directly to a SharePoint document library where all of our consultants could see it. Perhaps I should have given you this tip before Christmas! Mind you, you can set up the rule on your current Inbox now in Outlook and then under ‘Tools’ - ‘Rules and Alerts’ click ‘Run Rules Now’ and watch your inbox shrink. Just make sure you haven’t got an Alert setup on the SharePoint Document Library that informs you every time a new document is added.

With the addition of some SharePoint workflow on the Document Library you can automatically deal with these emails even more efficiently. This way if a customer enquiry comes through when you are eating your chocolate eggs during your Easter Vacation you can have SharePoint automatically handle it for you.

Andy Dale
Officetalk's Senior SharePoint Consultant
http://www.office-talk.com/

Andy Dale
Author: Andy DaleWebsite: http://andydalesharepoint.blogspot.com/
Andy Dale (MCSE) works for leading UK SharePoint specialists Office Talk as the Senior SharePoint Consultant. Office Talk are a Microsoft Gold Partner, based near Birmingham in the heart of the UK, who specializes in everything SharePoint.

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