Best Practices - Managing Calendars Effectively

What are the different type of things that I can schedule in Microsoft Outlook?


APPOINTMENT - An appointment is an activity that involves only you, at a specific, scheduled time

MEETING - A meeting occurs at a specific, scheduled time, but includes other persons invited using a meeting request sent by email. Meetings will appear in your calendar, as well as for each person invited.

EVENT - An event is an activity that will last all day. It will not block out time in your calendar, so you are able to have other entries on your schedule on that day.


General Tips

  1. If possible, run the same version of Outlook on all of your computers, at work and at home. Check to make sure everyone in the department is running the same version of Office. Mailbox owners and any delegates should be using the same version of Outlook with the latest service pack and updates on all computers that are used for calendaring. If you are in a mixed environment of Windows, Mac or mobile devices, each platform should use the same version and each device should have the latest service pack and updates.
  2. Manage your calendar exclusively from Outlook or OWA. Use your mobile device for only reviewing your calendar. You should accept, decline, modify or invite others to appointments from your Outlook client or use Outlook Web Access. 
  3. Make sure your mobile device has the latest OS/iOS version installed.  Regularly check for updates to make sure you have the latest version.


Scheduling Meetings and Handling Meeting Requests

  1. Always set an end date for recurring meetings. Outlook makes it easy to schedule a meeting that has multiple regular occurrences. We recommend that you always set an end date and limit the recurring series to a specific number of occurrences. Meetings with a large number of exceptions or changes will result in a series that is difficult to manage and can produce unexpected behavior.
  2. To change an entire series of meetings, change the end date for the series. This allows you and the attendees to keep a record of the meetings that occurred in the past. If you cancel the recurring meeting altogether, the entire history is lost. The best option is to set a new end date and then send the update to all attendees. This ends the meeting series early, while keeping a record of previous meetings.
  3. A "corrupt" meeting will remain that way until you delete it.  If it is a recurring appointment, delete all occurrences and reschedule it.
  4. When scheduling a recurring meeting, Microsoft recommends setting the end date no more than 6 months.  If you need to schedule a meeting for a longer period, start a new recurring meeting.
  5. Do not create recurring meetings for events that are frequently modified (e.g. attendees added/deleted, time/day change, some of the series cancelled). Modifying recurring meetings repeatedly can cause the meeting to disappear from attendees' calendars. It may be best to schedule these as events as individual meetings.
  6. If you edit a meeting (ex. changing the date/time, changing the subject, changing the location, changing the details, or adding/removing attendees) Outlook may ask if you want to send an update email to the attendees. The general “best practice” is to always send the email to make sure everyone in the meeting sees the most current details for the meeting. Just click on Send Update to make sure that the changes are sent to everyone that you invited to the meeting.
  7. If you cancel or delete a meeting , always Send Update to everyone - If you cancel or delete a meeting, but you do not send the update, the meeting is only removed from your calendar. No attendees will have been informed of any changes.


Things to consider if you use or manage a shared calendar…..

  1. Remove any unneeded shared calendars from your Outlook so that it no longer synchronizes to the server. Synchronizing multiple calendars will slow down performance of Outlook. To remove unwanted calendars you simply right-click on the calendar from the list and choose “Remove”. You can do this in Outlook for Windows and Outlook for Mac as well.
  2. We recommend that you only grant Editor permissions to one (1) delegate. This allows you to track when and how a meeting was processed. Considering the fact that a delegate can use multiple devices to access your data, having multiple delegates with Editor permissions can make it very difficult to determine why meetings are missing or out of date.  However, if more than 1 delegate is needed, then only 1 person should actively be managing the account at a time to minimize confusion.


Article ID: 35059
Thu 8/10/17 10:30 AM
Wed 1/13/21 12:49 PM