Invitations, notifications, and reminders

Overview

When you set up a meeting on your site, there are two ways you can inform participants about the meeting. You can invite participants to the meeting, and they can accept or decline your invitation. Or, you can notify them that the meeting is occurring. You can also set up a meeting reminder, which will automatically remind participants in advance of the meeting.

Sending meeting invitations

A meeting invitation is just that, you are asking participants if they are going to attend a meeting at a certain time and place. Participants then reply by accepting or declining your invitation, and you can easily see who will be at the meeting. If need be, you can move the meeting to a better time. Doing this by hand can be time consuming and complex, but your web office Calendar makes it simple.

Meeting invitations are email messages that are sent to all meeting participants. The email contains key meeting information such as the time, duration and location of the meeting. Each participant is asked to reply to the invitation by simply clicking on the link in the email. Users can accept, reject or tentatively accept the invitation. You can always see all invitation replies by looking at the Participant Status tab for the meeting.

To send a meeting invitation:

Tip: Users of recent versions of Microsoft Office OutlookŪ may notice formatting problems with email invitations. Read how to fix these problems.

Sending event notifications

You may find that you just want to tell people when an event or meeting is happening, without using the meeting invitation feature. For instance, you might choose to notify the entire company of when the company meeting is happening. In this case, you will want to use the Calendar's event notification feature.

Event notifications let users know you have posted a new event on the Calendar. They are automated email messages telling the time and place of an event to all the people involved. When posting a new event, send out a notification about it so you don't have to wait for them to visit their Calendar before they find out about it.

To send an event notification:

Tip: Users are not asked to respond to these notifications. If you want members to respond and use the Calendar to automatically track RSVP's, choose the Send an invitation option instead.

Tip: If you want to post an event to the Calendar and not send an email at all (perhaps when posting company holidays), choose the Don't notify option from the dialog box after clicking on Save.

Tip: When you click on Save on a new event with participants, you are always shown a dialog box giving you three options: send an invitation, send a notification, or don't notify. If you wish to save and send an invitation, you can skip this dialog box by clicking the Send an invitation instead of clicking on Save.

Managing your invitations

When you receive an invitation to a meeting, it is important to reply in a timely manner so the organizer can tell who is coming. Also, it keeps your Calendar up-to-date so others don't attempt to double book meetings with you.

To reply to a meeting invitation:

  1. To respond to an invitation, do one of the following:

From there you see a page where you are asked to respond with: Accept, Decline, or Tentative.

  1. You can add a comment with your reply. The comment you add here appears only in the email message to the meeting Organizer. It is not logged in the site.

  2. Click Accept Invitation, Decline, or Tentative to register your reply.

    The Organizer of the meeting receives an email message with your reply and your reply is logged in the Calendar.

To change your reply:

  1. Find the event in your Calendar.

  2. Click the event title. At the top of the page it says:
    You have Accepted/Tentatively accepted/Declined the invitation to this event. To change your status, click here.

  3. Click the link to edit your reply.

To check who's coming to a meeting:

The Organizer of the meeting receives an email each time a person responds to an event. Invitation responses are also logged in the web office Calendar and anyone listed as a participant for the event can check the responses.

  1. Find the event in your Calendar.

  2. Click the event title.

  3. Click the Participant Status tab.
    Beside each participant's name, it says either No Reply, Accepted, Tentative, or Declined.

To follow up with members who have not replied yet, click the Send Link button in the Command Bar and send members an email asking them to reply to the meeting invitation.

Setting up event reminders

Reminders let you know that you have something happening soon on your Calendar. Reminders are delivered to you by email and, if you have installed the Desktop Assistant, reminders also appear in a popup window on your computer screen, whether you are online or not.

To set up an event reminder:

If you rarely send event reminders, you may want to change your calendar settings so that during event creation, the Reminder tab will default to the "Don't send a reminder" option.

Learn more about the Desktop Assistant.

Tip: Users of recent versions of Microsoft Office Outlook may notice formatting problems with email reminders. Read how to fix these problems.

Sending a link to a Calendar event

You can send an email message linking to any of the events in your Calendar. The email message contains a hot link that goes directly to the event. To send a link to an event:

  1. Find the event and then click the Title of the event to display the event details.

  2. Click Send Link at the upper-left of the page and fill in the information on the Send Link page.

To
Cc
Bcc

To indicate who you'd like to send the link to, select one or more names from the list at the right, and then click the To, Cc, or Bcc buttons. Selecting To addresses the person directly; Cc sends a copy of the message to a person but doesn't necessarily address the person; and Bcc sends a "blind copy" where a person can read the message without the intended recipients knowing.

Subject

The subject is automatically filled in with the event title; you can change the subject if you'd like.

Message

A hot link to the event is automatically inserted in the message area so that when members receive the email, they can go directly to the event. Type your personal message above or below the link.

  1. Click Send Link.

Text email in Microsoft Office OutlookŪ

Recent versions of Microsoft Office Outlook have included an option that removes "extra line breaks" from plain text emails such as meeting invitations and reminders sent by the Calendar. This option, which is on by default, removes line breaks from both invitations and reminders that improve the readability of the email. You can disable this option using these steps:

  1. In Microsoft Office Outlook, select the Tools Menu and click Options...

  2. Click the Preferences tab.

  3. Click E-Mail Options...

  4. In the Message handling section, uncheck Remove extra line breaks in plain text messages.

  5. Click OK.

  6. Click OK again.