Monday, March 31, 2008

The Recurrence Of Annoying Meeting Invites

By Matt:

I don't know why, but as of late there have been a long parade of recurring meetings in my office being scheduled by various individuals who apparently don't know how to use the 'Recurring Meeting Tool' that is standard in any electronic calendar software.

So basically this means that instead of getting one invite for the recurring meeting, I get 24 invites for the same meeting scheduled to occur every two weeks throughout the entire calendar year. That's incredibly irritating.

I don't want to make any assumptions, so I'll quickly outline the steps you need to take to set up a recurring meeting in Outlook, which is what most offices use for their scheduling software:
  1. Navigate to your Calendar and schedule the occurrence, and attendees, of the first meeting
  2. Select 'Actions' > 'Recurrence' from the drop-down menu
  3. Determine your recurrence options based on your projected meeting schedule... once a week, once a month, bi-monthly, etc.
  4. Select 'OK' and 'Send' your invite
Now I grant that in cases where you have fluctuating schedules and a meeting time that cannot be consistent from event to event, the recurring meeting tool is not very helpful. In that case I recommend that you instead invite attendees to your recurring meeting via email - draft a message to all attendees and simply list the meeting name, purpose, and all projected meetings dates/times in the body of the message. This is generally a more efficient, and less intruding, way to schedule recurring meetings that don't occur on a consistent schedule.

More Outlook Tips @ Corporate Hack


Daydreamer cubed said...

I've been having problems with recurring invites at my job, too. I think part of the problem might have to do with the fact that people are using different versions of Outlook (Vista and XP versions) and don't realize that they are sending recurring invites by default. For that reason, it's good to educate people about this. Still, you'd think that Microsoft would have made the meeting invite tool more intuitive.

Anonymous said...

That's a good tip to hear. I don't use Office for scheduling at the moment, but I'll be sure to remember that if I ever do.

Matt @ Corporate Hack said...

@ daydreamer - Hmm, haven't run across the Visa vs. XP issues yet, but good to be aware of. Sorry to hear meeting issues aren't just isolated at my office. Thanks for stopping by!

@ paperweight - If you have a tip for your scheduling program you'd like to share, you can send it our way! Thanks for the comment.