Outlook Calendar provides a powerful and versatile tool for organizing your life or your department. Handy features like the scheduling assistant, time zone tool and tracking help you easily manage appointments. At the same time, users who have migrated from other platforms, such as GroupWise, should understand key differences related to migrated appointments in Outlook.

When organizations migrate future appointments from GroupWise to Outlook, those appointments transfer as disconnected items. For example, suppose that prior to switching from GroupWise to Outlook, a team leader created a department meeting appointment, inviting multiple employees. Post-migration, the meeting appears on the personal calendars of all recipients. All looks fine so far.

Now, suppose the meeting organizer edits the meeting time from 8:00am to 9:00am. The appointment will update on the organizer’s calendar. For an appointment created in Outlook, the recipients’ calendars would update, as well. However, in the case of migrated appointments, recipients will end up with two separate calendar events: one for 8:00 and one for 9:00.

Considerations When Working with Migrated Appointments

When you move to Outlook from another system, such as GroupWise, migrated appointments act a little differently than appointments created directly in Outlook. Keep in mind the following when working with migrated appointments in Outlook:

  1. Any recipient of the original appointment can edit the appointment – Once appointments migrate over, the link between them breaks. Consequently, any meeting attendee can edit or cancel the appointment on their personal calendar without affecting other calendars. This can result in confusion when two recipients have different information recorded for the same appointment.
  2. Appointment edits may result in multiple appointments – As indicated in the above example, when the organizer edits a shared appointment, the changes only appear on the organizer’s calendar. Recipients receive an email notification. When they accept the updated appointment, they may see two versions of the appointment on their calendars. Nothing marks which appointment is correct.
  3. Canceled appointments remain unchanged for recipients – When the organizer cancels an appointment, recipients will receive email notification that the appointment has been deleted. However, the appointment will still appear on the personal calendars of all recipients. Accepting the change will not delete the appointment.
  4. Recurring appointments – Your recurring appointments will migrate over to Outlook, but they will come over as individual appointments. That is, if you modify one of the occurrences, the other instances of the recurring appointment will remain unchanged.

How to Address Migrated Appointments in Outlook

To avoid confusion, the email migration experts at Messaging Architects typically recommend that organizations not bring future appointments over when migrating from other systems. Instead of risking confusion from migrated appointments in Outlook, take the time to re-create those appointments after the migration.

This practice offers the perfect opportunity to train users on the various calendar features available through Outlook. Users can learn to work with the scheduling assistant to check recipient availability for a shared appointment, for instance. Or they can develop best practices for managing recurring appointments.

The consultants at Messaging Architects have helped organizations of all types smoothly manage the transition to Office 365 and Outlook. They can provide training tips and help you define your email settings and organization ePolicies for an optimal work environment.

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