After its fall 2020 update, Microsoft Outlook 365 for Mac has two additional views for your calendar, an easier way to RSVP, better options for scheduling events, and a handy new status for invitations. Plus, it’s all packed in a more attractive app.
See Your Schedule with My Day
A convenient Microsoft Outlook feature called My Day gives you a quick view of your daily schedule. You can see an Agenda or Day view, and add an event with a click.
To see My Day on the Mail tab, click the Show Task Pane button on the right, or select View > Task Pane from the menu bar. To see it in the other Outlook tabs, click the Show Task Pane button or select View > My Day from the menu bar.
To switch between views in My Day, click the three-dot icon at the top right. This allows you to move from “Agenda” to “Day” view, and back again.
You can also select “Settings” from this menu to customize the calendars you want to display.
To add an event when you’re in My Day, click the plus sign (+) next to the three-dot icon.
Use the Three-Day Calendar View
If you want to see more than a single day on your Microsoft Outlook calendar, but a week (or even the workweek) is too much, try a three-day view.
Click the “Calendar” tab to open your Outlook calendar. From there, select the drop-down arrow at the top right or click View > Three Day in the menu bar.
RSVP in the Same Window
It’s efficient when you can reply to an email within the same window instead of a new one opening automatically. This is why Microsoft added event responses for your calendar in addition to emails.
When you receive a new event invitation, you can respond in the same ways as before, but now, you can also add a message in the Reading Pane.
As always, you can click “Accept,” “Tentative,” “Decline,” or “Propose New Time.” Right above those options, you’ll see the box where you can type an optional message to send to the event organizer. Just make sure that if you want to add a message, you do so before you click a response.
Schedule Events with Advanced Options
Scheduling events can be tough when you’re working around everyone’s calendars. With advanced options in Microsoft Outlook, though, you can select a time, check availability, and switch to a different day easily.
To create a new event, click File > New > Event in the menu bar of any Outlook tab. Or, you can click the “Calendar” tab, and then click “New Event” at the top left. You can then add all of your event details on the left.
For an easier way to adjust the time, use the calendar grid on the right. Drag the time block wherever you want it, and then expand or collapse it to adjust the time frame.
If you want to keep that time frame but check a different date, use the arrows at the top next to the date. When you land on the day you want using that same time frame, just complete and send your invitation.
If you have many invitees, you can also still click “Scheduling Assistant” at the top of the event window to add required and optional invitees, and a location.
This allows you to check the availability of multiple attendees at once. You can also drag the time block and use the double-sided arrow to lengthen or shorten the time frame.
When you’re finished with the Scheduling Assistant, just click “Done” at the top left. Any details you added or edited will be applied to the invitation. You’ll then be returned to the invitation window, where you can complete anything else you need to do or just click “Send.”
Set a Working Elsewhere Status
You’re probably used to selecting either the “Busy” or “Free” status whenever you’re scheduling events. In the new Microsoft Outlook, though, you now have another option: “Working Elsewhere.”
To use it, just click the status button at the top left of the event window, and then select “Working Elsewhere.” This lets your attendees know you’re joining from another location. It’s especially convenient when you’re working remotely or traveling.
The “Working Elsewhere” status appears with a blue-dotted circle that’s similar to “Tentative,” which includes a blue-striped circle. This informs others of your status at a glance.
One last new calendar feature for Outlook that’s worth mentioning is called Meeting Insights. Based on your event or attendees, Outlook will suggest emails and files for your event. If Meeting Insights are available, you’ll see them on a tab next to “Meeting Details” in the event window.
Also, keep in mind that with the new Outlook on Mac, you can still color events with categories in your calendar and display the weather if your event is taking place in another location.
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