Outlook – Meeting scheduling made easy

MeetingEasy scheduling of meetings and appointments

Staff are familiar with using the web service Doodle for finding a suitable date for a meeting. Unfortunately, this only secures a date via a poll. All participants then need to remember to enter the agreed meeting date into their calendar and often, due to the time taken to complete a poll, the dates have already been booked for other commitments and the scheduling starts all over again. Outlook makes the booking of meetings a doddle.

All you need to do is create a new meeting, add the participants and then check the schedule to find a mutually convenient slot. You can even add a local meeting room to book the meeting venue at the same time. All participants receive an invitation via email and can choose to accept or decline the meeting or even delegate it to a colleague. The meeting organiser can easily see who is attending and can very simply reschedule the meeting should that be necessary for whatever reason. For this to work efficiently, staff are encouraged to manage their diary commitments electronically so that the scheduling is based on your actual availability. Those who have recently given this method a try have found it to be incredibly easy and efficient.

Scheduling assistant overview

Once you have entered initial information, you can use the Scheduling Assistant option to find a suitable slot for this meeting:

Scheduling assistant

Scheduling assistant view

Select a mutually convenient slot for your meeting and then send the invitation. The meeting participants will receive an invitation per email. When they accept the meeting invitation, the meeting will be automatically added to their calendar. Meeting invitees also have the option to propose a new time for the meeting which would then be suggested to the meeting organiser to action.

In addition, if you have booked your venue via this method, the room calendar will be updated with your booking and you will receive a confirmation that the room has been successfully booked for you. If you wish to be able to use this functionality for your local or departmental meeting room then please contact the ITS Helpdesk who can help with setting up a meeting room calendar. It is not possible to book centrally bookable rooms via this method, these continue to be booked via the Room Bookings team.

We encourage that the meeting participants send a response to the meeting organiser so that they have an overview of how many people to expect to their meeting. If you decline the meeting, it can also prompt them to possibly reschedule if your attendance is required.

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