Is your Outlook starting to get sluggish? You don’t have time for email issues to slow you down – but follow these steps to put the pep back in your email step!

Who has time for slow email? You don’t!

Your email communication relies on a few different factors for the speed of communications, including your Internet connection and your email host servers. If you host your email yourself on an Exchange server, you’ll need to focus some of your efforts there, but if you rely on a third-party hosted solution, you have a few options to improve email performance.

Is your email:

  • Slow to load in your inbox?
  • Timing out when trying to send?
  • Not allowing you to set Rules for handling messages the way you prefer?

When Microsoft Outlook starts to slow down, it’s natural to suspect the seemingly countless causes and investigate possibilities, wondering what you can do to improve performance. The reality is you can improve email performance with a few steps.

Microsoft Outlook Performance Improvement Checklist

Just a few simple actions can have a significant impact on your email experience, and these three simple steps will make a noticeable difference in email performance.

#1 – Check for updates

Software manufacturers like Microsoft will release periodic updates to software products to improve known issues or if a product requires a security update in response to detected threats or vulnerabilities.

Microsoft will push updates for its Office products, including recommended updates to help software applications improve communications between each other, like Outlook and Exchange.

Tip: Check for and install software updates every two weeks to keep Outlook running at its peak performance.

#2 – Archive your inbox

Email inboxes can get massive, especially with large file attachments – or even graphics-heavy email signatures! Every email message that comes in adds to the size of your inbox, and the larger your inbox, the longer it can take to load. Over time, email inboxes that add up to 2GB or larger take up space on a local hard drive and an email server, impacting the performance of both.

Microsoft Outlook offers users a way to retain older messages without bogging down email performance through archival of messages with specifically established parameters, such as “older than six months”. These archives are still easily accessible through a folder in your inbox and aren’t removed from user-executed searches for specific messages by subject, sender, or content.

Tip: If you regularly receive emails with large file attachments, aim to archive about every 30 days.

#3 – Limit shared calendars

Shared calendars increase the amount of information shared from an Outlook account, and slows down transmissions. If you limit the number of shared calendars your email accounts access, you limit the transmission demands on Outlook.

Tip: One effective trick shared by the most seasoned professionals is to set aside a dedicated recurring block of time for meetings, even if they’re not necessary at the time. This is a great workaround to avoid shared calendars but still offers a group within the same company time for collaboration.

But don’t stop there!

There are still a few more steps you can take:

  • Microsoft Outlook has a default setting that enables RSS feeds to sync to the RSS reader in Outlook. You can disable this feature, depending on your version of Outlook, by adjusting the settings and disabling this feature.
  • Did you know deleted emails aren’t really deleted? Archiving will help, but so will permanently deleting emails from your inbox.
  • If you consistently receive large emails or emails with large file attachments, if you adjust your Outlook settings to download the complete message upon receipt, Outlook won’t need to sync with the server each time.

Is your email hosted through the same provider and on the same server as your website? A simple web page should load in only two or three seconds, but a graphics-heavy web page can take up to six or seven seconds to load. That said, if your website is loading more slowly than it should and this is combined with slowing email performance, your speed issue is with your host and likely due to their server(s). Hosts will generally share space on a server between multiple websites, each with different demands.

Have you considered migrating to Outlook through the subscription-based Microsoft Office 365?

If you’re already using Microsoft Office 365, you’re enjoying the benefits of increased mobility, collaboration, and scalability.

Migrating your email to Outlook through Microsoft Office 365 gives you the same Outlook you’re used to using but removing the headaches that come with slow email service. Transferring your email from your current host can seem like a daunting task, which is why most managed IT services providers offer migration consulting to help make the process smooth and painless.

Disruptive technology is one of the buzzwords in the technology industry today when creativity and innovation merge to disrupt existing processes and determine new ways to streamline processes through automation, and this is essentially what Microsoft Office 365 users are discovering. The driving force behind migration to the subscription-based cloud solution is a disruptive technology in an effort to prevent further disruption of productivity.

Don’t let slow email or constant email “housekeeping” impact your time anymore – time is money.

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Published on 9th August 2018 by Jon Morningstar

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