Office 365 Features


Posted on behalf of IT Division

The recent migration to Microsoft Office 356 (O365) for email and calendar has provided Jefferson Lab with a cloud-based collaboration platform consisting of Office and other productive applications and services.  Users can access emails, contacts, calendar and other Office applications like Excel, Word, PowerPoint, Outlook, and OneNote from anywhere over the Internet.  So what new features can you take advantage of?  Here are a few features in O365 that people have mentioned that you may also find useful.

Check Out the Scheduling Assistant!

The Scheduling Assistant in your O365 Calendar makes setting up meetings and booking conference rooms much easier.  After selecting your meeting attendees, and conference room, the Scheduling Assistant displays suggested times based on availability of attendees and the conference room.

When creating a New meeting, the Scheduling Assistant can be found to the right of the “People” menu in the Outlook web app (hover over icons to find the correct one).  Once selected, you will have a vertical view of your calendar. Then, as you add attendees, their calendars will show up beside your calendar in a vertical format.  You can click the “Add room” button on the bottom left to see available rooms.  When you select a room, the room calendar will also show up in the vertical view beside your calendar and other attendees’ calendars.

What is a Focused Inbox?

In Outlook, a Focused inbox uses machine learning to analyze your email and control the overflow of emails by placing the most important emails in your Focused inbox tab.  The rest go to the Other inbox tab.  Emails you will find in Focused consists of those from work, people listed in your Contacts, people you interact with frequently, and other emails that the feature detects as important.  The Other inbox will contain less important emails such as advertisements, newsletters, automatically generated message, and bulk emails.

While the Focused inbox can be convenient, it is not perfect and must be trained.  If at any time you see a message in Other that should be in Focused, you can click on the message and choose to ‘Move to Focused inbox’ or ‘Always move to Focused inbox’.  The same can be done if you see a message in Focused that should be in Other.

You will still receive notifications about email flowing to Other and you can switch between Focused and Other at any time.  The more you use Focused Inbox, the smarter it gets about how it organizes your messages. There are override settings available to make sure emails from certain senders always show up in a particular destination.

Conversations View in O365

Although the “Conversations” view feature existed in Zimbra and other email readers, a lot of us are used to seeing our email come in one after the other; with no real organization.  Our Inbox is just one big pile of emails stacked on top of each other.  This Inbox view is called “Messages”.  With O365, the “Conversations” view is the default view for your Inbox.  An email conversation includes all messages in the same thread with the same subject line.  A Conversations view helps consolidate your work and keep you from having to search through your Inbox for responses from everyone contributing to an email conversation.

When you receive a new message that’s part of a conversation, the whole conversation moves to the top of your message list.  This should help alleviate any fears of not seeing updates to email conversations since they show up at the top of your Inbox.  Switching to Conversations view can be an easy way to declutter your Inbox.  All the back and forth email replies will be grouped into one location.  Of course, you can switch back to the Messages view at any time to see your email stack.

CONTACT: IT Division Help Desk, x7155,