How to Delay Sending an Email in Outlook - A Comprehensive Guide

March 4, 2024
12 Minutes
Modified on:
March 4, 2024
Written by:
Swati Bucha
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In today’s fast-paced digital world, sending an email can sometimes feel like walking on a tightrope. One wrong step, and you might find yourself in a sticky situation. But fear not! Microsoft Outlook comes to the rescue with a nifty feature that delays the sending of emails. This feature acts as a safety net, allowing you to review and rectify potential mistakes before your emails are sent out to the respective recipient.

Whether it’s catching embarrassing typos, managing your emotions, or scheduling emails for considerate timing, delaying emails in Outlook offers numerous benefits. 

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll explore the ins and outs of how to delay sending an email in Outlook so you can take control of your email communications.

Delay Sending Emails in Outlook: Points to Consider

Sending an email prematurely can lead to various repercussions. Microsoft Outlook solves this problem by allowing users to delay sending emails. Before jumping to how to delay sending an email in Outlook, there are some tips and tricks to consider. These points help users gain the opportunity to review and rectify potential mistakes before they dispatch any emails.

1. Schedule Delayed Delivery.

This method allows you to specify the exact date and time for an email to be sent, making it perfect for time-sensitive communications. Example: Need to send a critical update to your team but want to ensure it arrives at the start of the workday? You can schedule the email to be sent first thing in the morning. Besides, you can even schedule and manage your meetings with Microsoft Bookings

2. Create Rules for Delayed Sending.

Customize rules to apply delays based on conditions like recipient type or email content. Think of it as setting personalized reminders for your emails, customizing rules to apply based on specific conditions, and ensuring each message gets the attention it deserves.

3. Disable Automatic Send.

Turning off automatic send is a great option if you prefer to review your emails before sending them. It ensures that messages remain in your outbox until you’re ready to send them.

4. Enable Delay for All Emails.

It’s like hitting the snooze button on your emails—use universal delay rules to give yourself a moment of reflection before sending any message. It promotes thoughtful communication in the digital world, or if you consider saving the emails as a PDF

Benefits of Delay Sending Emails in Outlook

Delaying email in Outlook is a valuable practice that can save you from countless headaches and mishaps. Here are some of the benefits if you are thinking of how to delay sending an email in Outlook:

1. Avoid Embarrassing Mistakes

Delaying email sending allows you to double-check your message for errors, ensuring that you present yourself professionally. For example, catching a typo in your resume or cover letter before it reaches a potential employer can save you from an embarrassing situation or, worse, rejection.

2. Manage Emotions

By delaying the sending of an email, you can prevent impulsive or emotionally charged messages from reaching the recipients. For instance, it can help maintain a professional relationship if you have enabled the delayed option and typed a heated email to a colleague in the heat of the moment. You can easily unsend the email when you are back to your senses.

3. Considerate Timing

Delays allow you to schedule emails to be sent at times that are convenient for recipients, avoiding disturbances or interruptions. For example, sending a non-urgent email to a colleague during their lunch break ensures they won’t be interrupted during work hours.

4. Post-Meeting Debriefs

Facilitate through meeting recaps by drafting immediate summaries with delayed sending for additional insights. For instance, delaying the debrief email to be sent an hour after a team meeting allows participants to gather their thoughts and provide comprehensive feedback.

5. Cancellation and Rescheduling

You can cancel and reschedule already scheduled meetings if necessary, providing flexibility in sending times. For example, if an unexpected event requires changes to a planned announcement email, you can easily reschedule it to a more suitable time.

How to Delay Sending an email in Outlook? 

Delaying the sending of emails in Outlook can provide time for last-minute adjustments. Whether you need to delay a single email or establish a default delay for all outgoing messages, Outlook offers versatile options to suit your needs. Here’s a detailed guide on how to delay sending emails in Outlook effectively:

How to Delay for All Emails Sent?

If you prefer to delay all outgoing emails by default, you can set up a rule to apply a universal delay. Follow these steps:

Step 1: Open Manage Rules & Alerts in Outlook

Go to the “File” tab and select “Manage Rules & Alerts.”

Step 2: Create a New Rule

Click on “New Rule” and select “Apply this rule to messages I send.” Then Click “Next.”

Step 3: Add a Condition (Optional)

You can add conditions to the rule, such as applying it only to specific types of emails. Click “Next” to proceed.

Step 4: Defer Delivery by X Minutes

Enable the “defer delivery by several minutes” action and specify the desired delay duration. You can delay sending for 1 to 120 minutes. Click “Next” when done.

Step 5: Add an Exception (Optional)

You can add exceptions to the rule, such as skipping the delay for emails marked as high importance. Click “Next” to continue.

Step 6: Finalize the Rule

Enter a meaningful name for the rule and ensure that you have enabled the “Turn on this rule” option. Click “Finish” to create the rule.

Step 7: Confirmation

You see the newly created rule in the Rules and Alerts overview.

Note: The rule will only run when Outlook is running, and it won’t work with Outlook Online or Outlook app on mobile devices.

Bonus: How to Delay For One Email?

If you need to delay sending a single email, follow these steps:

Step 1: Compose an Email.

Start composing a new email or responding to an existing one.

Step 2: Access Options.

In the message window, go to the "Options" tab at the top.

Step 3: Select Delay Deliver.

  • Under the “More Options” section, click on “Delay Delivery.” This opens the properties dialog box.

Step 4: Set Delivery Time.

Check the “Do Not Deliver Before” option and specify the desired date and time for the email to be sent.

Step 5: Send the Email.

Close the dialog box and click “Send.” The email will be stored in the Outbox until the specified delivery time.

Step 6: Edit Setting (Optional).

If you need to change the delay settings for the email, choose it from the outbox folder, find the “Delay Delivery” button in the “Options” tab, and make the necessary edits.

By following these steps, you can effectively delay the sending of emails in Outlook, whether it’s for individual messages or all outgoing emails. This is how you can delay sending an email in Outlook, giving yourself time to review and revise messages. Additionally, this feature provides added flexibility and control over your email communication, helping you make adjustments as needed.

How to Undo Send in Outlook Online?

In Outlook Online, you can utilize the Undo Send feature to postpone email deliveries by 5 or 10 seconds. You can even delete the email if you change your mind. To activate this option, kindly follow these steps:

  • Step 1: Open Outlook Online and select the gear icon.
  • Step 2: Choose the Mail option. 
  • Step 3: Opt for Compose and Reply.
  • Step 4: Scroll down to reach “Undo Send.” 
  • Step 5: Adjust the slider to set the delay to 10 seconds.
  • Step 6: Save your changes.

Once set up, when sending an email, you’ll notice an “Undo” button immediately after clicking Send. This brief delay enables you to prevent and reverse inadvertent email transmissions, offering added assurance to your correspondence.

Addressing Common Concerns

Here are some common problems with their solution that you might face while changing the delay email settings in Outlook:

Outlook Not Running at Delivery Time.

If you've scheduled an email to send while Outlook is closed, it will send the email as soon as you open the application again. For example, if you schedule an email to send at 11:00 p.m. but Outlook is closed, it will send it the next time you open Outlook.

No Internet Connection at Delivery Time.

In the event of connectivity issues, Outlook will try to resend any delayed messages once you restore your internet connection. For instance, if you lose an internet connection while an email is scheduled to be sent, Outlook will attempt to send it again once you're back online.

How Can Neo Help Optimise Workflow Management in Outlook?

Neo, an all-in-one sales solution, integrates with Outlook. It makes workflow efficient, enabling easy email management. Quickly reply, track engagement, and connect with buyers easily. It provides a professional domain name and features like read receipts, follow-up reminders, email templates, and multi-touch email campaign support. It manages tasks, provides email tracking tools, and calls right from your inbox to ensure effective workflow management. 

Final Words

Sending an email prematurely can be like releasing a balloon before it’s tied - it can cause a mess. Implementing how to delay sending an email in Outlook approach is prudent to mitigate potential errors and manage communication effectively. By scheduling delayed delivery or creating rules for specific conditions, you ensure that your messages are sent—at the right time and with the right content. 

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Why should I delay sending emails in Outlook?

Delaying email sends in Outlook helps you avoid embarrassing mistakes and schedule emails as per your preferred time. It also helps to manage your emotions, ensuring effective communication.

2. Can I customize rules for delayed sending in Outlook?

Yes, you can customize rules based on conditions like recipient type or email content to apply delayed selectively. 

3. Is there a way to disable automatic send in Outlook?

Yes, you can disable automatic send to ensure messages remain in your Outlook until you’re ready to send them.

4. Can I enable delay for all emails in Outlook?

Yes, you can set up universal delay rules to give yourself a moment of reflection before sending any message.

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