MS Outlook for Personal Efficiency and Team Productivity

In the fourth of a series of five articles Jacqui Hinchliffe from Positive Connexions – West Auckland Computer Training discusses how to manage your emails.  Previously Jacqui introduced the four D rules for managing email.  This month’s article discusses rule number 3:Delegate

1. Delete 2. Diarise 3. Delegate 4. Do It Now

The average New Zealand employee wastes 33 hours a year on unproductive email, according to the Ernst & Young NZ Productivity Pulse January 2013.  That’s $447 per person, calculated at NZ’s minimum wage rate. For many of us the cost of this unproductive time would be much higher.

Can your business really afford to waste this amount per employee a year on unproductive email?

Our previous article discussed ‘Diarising’ the emails you don’t have the time to action immediately, by turning them into Tasks in your ‘To Do’ list.  When you work with others not everything in your ‘To Do’ list has to be done by you.

Efficient use of Outlook Tasks to delegate and track work not only helps to keep your inbox sorted, it improves the productivity of process focussed operations, production and sales teams, customer service, call centre and warehouse staff.

Use these practical steps to Delegate Tasks to others:

  1. Create a New Task
  2. Click the Assign Task button
  3. Click the To button and insert the recipient’s name
  4. Complete the details.  Attach briefing notes, files, emails and other contacts as required
  5. Click on Send or press Alt + S

The recipient has to accept or decline the task; you’ll receive notification of their choice and accepted tasks will automatically go into their ‘to do’ list.  Outlook will also notify you of their progress, completion or failure to meet the deadline you set.

Use these practical steps to respond to a Task request:

  1. Open the email containing the request
  2. Click on Accept or Decline and add a message if required.
    If you accept, open the Task and modify priority, categories and comment details to meet your needs

Use these practical steps to update the progress of your assigned Task:

  1. Open the Task
  2. Update the ‘% Complete’ field:
  • 100% will mark the Status field – Complete
  • <100% will mark the Status field – In Progress
  • If you’re waiting for someone else or the task is deferred, update the Status field accordingly

Jacqui’s previous articles can be viewed here:

– Introduction to getting your in-box sorted
– D for Delete
– D for Diarise

2017-11-23T14:14:06+00:00February 11th, 2013|Business Improvement, Business Resources|