If you’re using Outlook 2013 at work, one of the handy features that you need to be aware of is Automatic Replies, formerly known as Out of Office Assistant. This feature comes into play when you are taking a leave of absence from work and want your email messengers to know that you won’t be available to reply to their messages for a certain period of time. Automatic Replies is a handy feature to use if your email is configured on the Exchange server. However, you can still send automatic replies to others if you are using other email accounts. In this post, we’ll take a look at how you can create automatic replies Outlook 2013 for POP3, IMAP and Other Accounts.
Create Automatic Replies Outlook 2013
Although you cannot directly use Automatic Replies from a non-Exchange server account, you can create an email template, save it, and then set up a rule to automatically reply to email messages.
To create an email template:
1. Open a new email. Click Home-> New Email.
2. Enter the desired out-of-office message in the new email and add an appropriate subject line.
3. Save the message as an Outlook Template.
Now its time to create an automatic reply. To do this you’ll need to create a rule.
1. On the Home tab, in the Move group, click Rules and then select Manage Rules & Alerts.
2. In the Rules and Alerts dialog box, click New Rule.
3. In Step 1, in the Start from a Blank Rule section, click Apply rules on messages I receive and then click Next.
4. In the next screen, under Step 1, you can select any criteria that you want to, although you can completely skip this if there is nothing that’s needs to be changed. Click Next. If you receive a message confirming the rule, click Yes.
5. In the next screen, (What do you want to do with the message?),check reply using a specific template.
6. Under Step 2 (Edit the rule description) click a specific template.
7. In the Look in drop down list, select User Templates in File System and then navigate to the folder where you saved your template and click Open.
8. Click Next.
9. In the next screen, check off any items that are exceptions to the rule you are creating. Generally, there won’t be any need to mark off items here. Click Next.
10. In the next screen, specify a name for the rule in the text box and click Finish.
The next time anybody emails you on that specific address, they will receive an automatic message that you laid out in the template. This message will only be sent out once to an email address during one session.
Once you have returned back from your time off, don’t forget to turn off the automatic reply.
To do that:
1. Click Home –> Rules –> Manage Rules & Alerts.
2. On the Email Rules tab, under Rule, uncheck the rule that you want to turn off.