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Working with Meeting Requests in Outlook 2007

written by: Meryl K Evans•edited by: Michele McDonough•updated: 12/31/2008

While Outlook can't run your meetings, it can manage your meetings and requests.

  • slide 1 of 2

    Create a Meeting Request

    We probably sit in more meetings than we'd like, but they won't go away. The least we can do is create and manage meeting requests so we can track attendees. Outlook's definition of a meeting is an activity that includes more than one person, occurs at a scheduled time and involves sending a meeting request by e-mail. While appointments can involve another person such as a doctor in a doctor's appointment, you most likely can't send a meeting request to the doctor.

    Meeting requests require being on an Exchange Server to take advantage of its features. You can send a meeting request to someone outside of the network, but you won't be able to check the person's schedule or track attendees.

    Unlike an appointment, a meeting on a calendar shows the location of the meeting and the meeting organizer's name.

    Create a meeting request:

    1. Select New from File the menu and Meeting Request, or use Ctrl+Shift+Q shortcut.
    2. Click To for Contacts and select attendees. For Optional attendees, click the Contact once and click Optional.
    3. Click OK.
    4. Enter the Subject, Location, and Times.
    5. Click Send.
  • slide 2 of 2

    Manage Meeting Requests

    When you receive a meeting request, you can click Calendar from the Actions group to see when the meeting occurs on your calendar. Here are the things you can do with a meeting request when on an Exchange server:

    • Accept the request. Outlook adds the meeting to your calendar.
    • Accept the request as tentative stating you might come to the meeting, but it's not definitive. Outlook adds the meeting to your calendar as tentative.
    • Propose a new meeting time. Outlook sends a reply to the organizer along with your suggested new meeting time and the calendar shows the original meeting time as tentative.
    • Decline the request. Outlook deletes the meeting from your calendar.

    After you select a response, Outlook gives you the following choices:

    • Edit the response.
    • Send a response.
    • Don't send a response.

    These choices appear whenever you act on a meeting request or change a meeting request.

    You can notify the meeting organizer if you can't make a meeting that you already accepted or you need to switch it from Accepted to Tentative. Open the meeting and click Decline or another response from the Respond group in the Meeting tab. Outlook asks for a confirmation. Again, you can edit, send or don't send a response.

    Sometimes you might not want or need to send a notification to the organizer. For example, you need to remove a meeting notice that appears several times.

    If you need to reschedule or delete a meeting and you're organizer, do the following:

    1. Open the meeting to reschedule or delete it.
    2. Change the start time and day, if needed, or click Cancel Meeting.
    3. Click Send Update.

    Invited attendees receive the update and Outlook updates their calendars based on their response or removes a canceled meeting from the calendar.