Outlook Tip – Defer Outgoing Email Messages

This post is not related to Microsoft Dynamics CRM, but read on because this tip can save your ass.

How many times did you regret sending an email while actually clicking the Send button? Poor choice of words, spotted typo, wrong recipients or just sending sensitive data to your customer?
Did you try to ‘recall’ the message? Did that trick ever work for anyone?

I can honestly say I hadn’t any of these horrific accidents since I started using a simple Outlook Rule: Defer Outgoing Email Messages by 3 minutes.

I discovered that 3 minutes is the ideal time frame for me to identify a mistake and cancel the pending email sending. Opening the email message waiting in the Outbox changes the message status to Draft and cancel sending until you click the Send button again.

Follow the next steps to define this rule in Outlook 2013 (I assume any decent email client allow setting similar rule). I believe Google plan (or already did?) to add similar option to Gmail accounts.

1. Make sure no email is selected (you can select the empty outbox folder) and Click the ‘Create Rule’ option under the Rules menu (Move section, Home tab)

Manage rules & alerts

2. Click the ‘New Rule…’ button to open the Rule editor

3. Select the ‘Apply rule on messages I send’ option and click Next

apply rule on messages I send

4. Click Next again and approve applying the rule to every outgoing message

apply rule on messages I send

5. Check the ‘defer delivery by a number of minutes’. In the bottom pane, click the ‘a number of’ clickable text and enter the number of minutes suitable for you. Click Next

defer delivery by a number of minutes

6. Optional step: check the ‘Except if it is marked as importance’. This will allow you to send urgent messages without deferring by setting the high importance flag on

except if it is marked as importance

7. In the lower pane click the importance clickable text and select High. Click Next

select high importance

8. Name the step with some meaningful name. Click Finish

name rule

You are done! Test the rule by sending an email. The new rule will delay the outgoing email in the outbox for 3 minutes unless you reopen it.

Try this rule, you will never go back.


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