Information Technology Services
Information Technology Services

Access a Shared Mailbox through Outlook 2011

A shared mailbox is a special email account that makes it easy for multiple individuals to read and respond to the email received in the shared mailbox. A shared mailbox is not owned by the person or persons who receive and respond to the email; it is owned by the department (or organization). Permissions to access the shared mailbox are controlled by the department's Exchange Administrator.    

Rather than log into the shared mailbox account, the user is given permissions to access the account.  They configure their email client (Office 365 and Outlook) to access the account, logging in with their own NetID and password.  When they respond to an email in the shared mailbox, instead of the From: field containing their name, it will contain the name of the Shared Mailbox account.  When a message is sent or replied to, the email looks like it was sent by the shared mailbox, not from the individual who is actually sending the email. 

For information on requesting and setting sharing permissions see the Resource Management tutorial.

Configure Your Outlook Client to Receive and Send Email for a Shared Account

There are two ways to access a shared mailbox in Outlook. 

  1. Configure the shared mailbox as a separate mailbox. 
    • This is the Preferred method (recommended by ITS)
    • When email is sent you choose which mailbox it will be sent from
    • Copies of Sent email are filed in the Sent Items folder of the mailbox that the email is sent from
    • When replying to email the from address is set to the shared mailbox by default
    • When using Rules it is seen as a discrete mailbox
  2. Configure the shared mailbox as extension to your mailbox. This method can be used if you are unable to use the preferred method

Configure the shared mailbox as a separate mailbox (preferred)

  1. Open Outlook 2011
    • Open the File menu
    • Select Preferences...

  2. The Outlook Preferences screen will open
    • Select Accounts

  3. The Accounts screen will open
    • Select your email account from the left menu.  Your account details will be shown on the right panel.
    • Click the plus (+) button in the bottom left corner
    • Select Exchange... from the drop down menu

    screenshot illustrating above step

  4. The Exchange account information screen will open
    • In the E-mail address: field enter the email address for the shared account
    • From the Method: drop down menu select User Name and Password
    • In the User name: field enter your
    • In the Password: field enter your NetID password 
    • Make sure the Configure automatically box is checked
    • The Add Account button will now be available.  Click it

    screenshot illustrating above step

  5. The  Outlook was redirected to the server...  screen will open
    • Check the box beside Always use my response for this server
    • Click the Allow button

    screenshot illustrating above step

  6. Your shared mailbox now will show up in your account list.
    • note that the shared mailbox has its own Inbox, Drafts, Sent Items, Deleted Items and Junk E-mail folders
    • You can also create additional folders  by right mouse clicking on the Mailbox name and selecting New Folder
    • The Inbox, Drafts, Sent Items and Deleted Items for your personal account are at the top of the Folder list.

    screenshot illustrating above step

Setting up as extension to your mailbox

  1. Open Outlook 2011
    • Open the File menu
    • Select Preferences...

  2. The Outlook Preferences screen will open
    • Select Accounts

  3. The Accounts screen will open
    • Select the account you want to share
    • Click the Advanced... button

  4. The Delegates screen will open
    • Click the + key

  5. The Select User screen will open
    • The Shared Mailbox will be listed
    • Select the shared mailbox
    • Click the OK button

Sending Email From a Shared Mailbox in Outlook

When you send a new email from the shared mailbox you will need to ensure that the From: field contains the name of the shared mailbox and not your name.  Once you have more than one mailbox the From: field will be visible and you will be able to choose from which mailbox the email should be sent.  Email sent from the shared mailbox will be stored in the shared mailbox's Sent Items folder (when you use the preferred method to configure your shared account).  

  1. From the Outlook main menu select the New Email button to send a new email
    • The New Email screen will open
    • Examine the new email. If you have multiple account setup the From: field will have a drop menu that allows you to select who the email is from.
    • Select who the email will be from
    • Complete the To:, Subject: and body of the email as usual and click the Send button
    • A copy of the email will be saved in the Sent Items folder

    screenshot illustrating above step