Last Updated: October 2019
Applicability: Office 365 / 2019, 2016, 2013. Windows and macOS.
Here’s a question we got from Dorothy:
Hello! i work as a travel agent and my availability is of utmost important to my customers. Every now and then, i am away from office due to vacations, and i would like to ensure my customers are aware of that and stuff doesn’t fall through the cracks. In the past, I used to work for a company, and i remember that there was a trick to set an out of the office auto-responder there. I now work from home and use Outlook.com and Gmail on Microsoft Outlook 2019, is there a way to setup an out of the office rule to notify others that i am away?
Thanks for your good question and good luck with your new business.
You can easily define auto reply texts when out of the office using Rules. In this tutorial we’ll explain how to do that in Windows and then in the macOS. Readers can put this in practice in order to have Outlook reply automatically in case they are away for vacation, or any other leave of absence.
For completeness we have added a short section on how to use Outlook on Exchange to send OOTO replies.
If you are using Gmail or Hotmail/Outlook.com on Outlook, you’ll need to use Rules to setup your autoresponder.
Please proceed as following:
Note: Please remember that you’ll need to deactivate your rules when back from your vacations or leave of absence; otherwise your automatic emails will continue to be sent.
If you want to disable your replies, proceed as following:
If your company is using an Exchange Server, then the configuration process is very simple:
If you are on macOS then the process is fairly simple, here are the steps:
We were asked whether you are able to set different automatic responders according to who sent the message. That’s possible,as the Outlook Rules Wizrd allows you to condition your email messages by several parameters:
In order to use multiple replies, all you need to do is build different rules and then assign different Outlook reply templates to each.
Good question, you’ll see your replies showing up as entries in your Outlook sent items folder
This is a very important question – the answer is that the rules you are defining in Outlook are client only, meaning that they will run only when Outlook is running. This is not the case if you are using autoreplies on Outlook on Exchange.
When on PTO / vacation/ holidays or while travelling, you might choose to automatically forward your emails to other people so they are able to respond. You can use the Rules Wizard to define a specific rule to handle that.
On Windows, you are able to add rich text information to your replies, be it links, pictures and even animated gifs. You can also add your signature to all outgoing emails.
In case of any additional questions, feel free to let us know. Hope it Helps!