Manage Your Outlook Email More Easily with Quick Steps

One of the first things I do when I install new software is go through all the menu items and program options/preferences/settings to customize it to the way I prefer to work. However, when I’ve used a program forever, like Microsoft Outlook, I don’t really pay attention to the interface anymore and just use the same features I’ve always used.

As I mentioned in an earlier post about keeping my Inbox under control, I use Outlook folders a lot to file my emails. And for the longest time, the way I moved an email to a particular folder was by right-clicking on the message in the list and choosing the folder. This could be a bit of a nuisance because, even though the menu will show the last ten 10 folders you’ve moved messages to, to move them to other folders requires browsing through them all. This was especially frustrating for those folders that I use more often than others but that could get bumped off the top-ten list as new folders were added to the top.

But like with many things, I just accepted this way of doing things because I’d always done them that way. But then I got this new ASUS laptop that has a terrible trackpad (among other issues) and right-clicking often acts like left-clicking, which can be a REAL nuisance. So one day I happened to notice that there’s actually a Move button in the ribbon at the top of the screen that I could use to move emails, available in both the Inbox window and individual email windows. So this option started to make my life a little easier.

But. It still wasn’t perfect, because of that whole browsing-to-a-folder thing. And, again, I just accepted it.

Until. Just a couple of weeks ago, I suddenly noticed the Quick Steps section in the ribbon and realized I could add items to it that would let me select messages and move them directly to my favorite folders. Huzzah!

What’s more, you can add a variety of other commands to your Quick Steps that can help do other things. One of my new faves is the ability to create a new meeting without having to go to my Calendar view. Other options include forwarding messages to predetermined recipients, adding a specific flag, and permanently deleting messages instead of sending them to the Deleted folder.

Create a New Outlook Quick Step

Click the Create New item in the Quick Step section.

You can also click the Down button or the Expand arrow to see options for creating a new item.

Select Your New Quick Step’s Options

Give it a name, pick the action you want to do, and set a keyboard shortcut and tooltip if you want.

Depending on which action you select, more options will appear.

Also, note that you can add multiple actions into a single Quick Step. For example, you could create a Quick Step to forward a message to a specific person and then move it to another folder.

That’s it! Your new Quick Steps have been added to the ribbon.

To rearrange, edit, duplicate, and delete QuickSteps, click the Expand arrow at the bottom right of the Quick Steps section to open the Manage QuickSteps dialog.

Elizabeth Kricfalusi

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