How to Manage Email using Microsoft Outlook Rules?

Although email is supposed to make communication quicker and easier, it can often complicate things instead. Many have inboxes with thousands of messages in them. Email has become a major clutter and productivity obstacle. Two ways to help manage that avalanche of email if you use Outlook are using Rules and Quick Steps.

Using Outlook Rules

Outlook uses rules to automate common tasks. They are easy to create and can be used to streamline common e-mail-related tasks. Here’s how to create a rule from a template or from scratch:

  • In the navigation, Click Mail
  • On the Toolsmenu, click Rules and Alerts.
  • If you have more than one e-mail account, in the “Apply changes to this folder” list, click the inbox you want.
  • Click New Ruleor Create Rule.
  • Do one of the following:
  • Use a template with pre-specified actions and conditions and select the template you want.
  • Create the rule by specifying your own conditions, actions, and exceptions
  • To have this rule apply to all your e-mail accounts and inboxes, select the “Create this rule on all accounts” check box on the last page of the Rules wizard

Create Rule based on Message

You can also create a Rule directly from a particular message. This is helpful when you’re reading a message and you realize that you would like to create a rule that applies specifically to all messages with a particular subject line, or to all messages from a particular sender. For example, you can create a rule to move messages from someone to a specific folder.

  • Right-click the message that you want to base the rule on, and then clickCreate Rule on the shortcut menu.
  • In theCreate Rule dialog box, select the check boxes for the options that are already filled in with information from your selected message.
  • Select theMove the item to folder check box.
  • Click an existing folder or clickNew to create a new folder to store the messages.
  • To add more conditions, actions, or exceptions to the rule, clickAdvanced Options, and then follow the rest of the instructions in the Rules and Alerts Wizard.

How rules help you manage message

A rule is an action that Microsoft Outlook takes automatically on an arriving or sent message that meets the conditions that you specify in the rule. You can choose many conditions and actions by using the Rules and Alerts Wizard. Rules do not operate on message that have been read, only on those that are unread.

Rules fall into one of two general categories: organization and notification. The Rules and Alerts Wizard contains templates for the most commonly used rules.

  • Stay organized: These are rules that help you to file and follow up on messages. For example, you can create a rule for messages from a specific sender, such as Bobby Moore, with the word “sales” in theSubject line, to be flagged for follow-up, categorized as Sales, and moved to a folder called Bobby’s Sales.
  • Stay up-to-date: These are rules that notify you in some way when you receive a particular message. For example, you can create a rule that automatically sends an alert to your mobile telephone when you receive a message from a family member.
  • Start from a blank rule: These are rules that you create from scratch.

You can add exceptions to your rules for special circumstances, such as when a message is flagged for follow-up action or is marked with high importance. A rule is not applied to a message if even one of the exceptions that you specify is met. Read more information about how to manage email using Microsoft Outlook rules.