|Microsoft Office Outlook® 2003
What is a Meeting Workspace?
What is the agenda for today's meeting? What did we decide in last week's planning meeting? Where are the latest documents we are supposed to review? If these questions sound familiar where you work, there is an alternative to scrambling through e-mail messages, attachments, and your file system to find the answers. That alternative is a Meeting Workspace. A Meeting Workspace provides a convenient, centralized place for people to collaborate on a project and have a record of what was decided in a meeting.
A Meeting Workspace is a special type of site in Microsoft Windows® SharePoint™ Services. In this example, you create the site within an Outlook meeting request. The meeting you create the workspace site for does not take place in the Meeting Workspace site. The meeting itself is conducted in person, over the telephone, or from a conferencing program. However, you can view the workspace site and update it during the meeting. For example, you can list the agenda, update the attendees list to show who actually participated, record decisions, track tasks, and add documents. This way, you have a complete record of the meeting for future reference.
After the meeting, use the workspace site to publish the meeting results. You will always see the most current version of a document the team is working on, so you don't have to send large files through your e-mail system each time content changes.
How do I get the Meeting Workspace feature?
To enable the Meeting Workspace feature in Outlook 2003, you need a Microsoft Exchange Server e-mail account and access rights to a parent SharePoint Services site or Microsoft Office SharePoint™ Portal Server Web site under which the Meeting Workspace will be a subsite. For more information, contact your organization's administrator.
How do I create a Meeting Workspace?
- In your Outlook Calendar, create a new meeting request.
- Fill out the appropriate fields, for example, To, Subject, Location, and the Appointment and Scheduling tabs of the meeting request.
- On the Appointment tab, click Meeting Workspace (located just below the Reminder check box). The Meeting Workspace task pane opens.
- In the Meeting Workspace task pane, click Change settings.
Note You click Create only if you know you have all the settings in place that you need.
- If it is not already selected, click the Create a new workspace option.
- Use the drop-down lists to specify the site location, language, and template to use. These settings become your default settings for future workspaces you create.
- After you complete the settings, click OK to return to the first task pane.
- Click Create.
A link to the workspace site is automatically added to the body of your meeting request. Outlook also communicates with the workspace site, automatically adding the subject, date, time, and location from the meeting request to the workspace site.
- To view the workspace, click the link that was added. It uses the same title you used in the Subject line of your meeting request. In this example, it's called Project Status Meeting. Or you can click Go to workspace in the task pane. You can add information, such as the meeting agenda, in the workspace now or later.
- To complete the meeting request, switch back to Outlook by pressing ALT+TAB.
- To send the meeting request and invite others to the meeting and workspace, click Send.
If you later change the attendee names, date, time, or location in Outlook, Outlook automatically updates the information in the Meeting Workspace site. You can easily identify which meetings in Calendar are linked to a Meeting Workspace because they display a Meeting Workspace icon preceding the meeting subject.
Note If you update the attendees from the workspace site, you must switch back to Outlook to update that information in the request.
How do I use a Meeting Workspace?
Outlook enables you to set up a workspace site for more than one meeting, such as for a recurring meeting or for multiple related meetings that are linked to the same workspace site. You can also assign a delegate to set up the workspace site for you.
How you use the Meeting Workspace is pretty much up to you and what your team's needs are. You can add documents to a document library, manage the attendee list, add items to the agenda, and so on. If the workspace doesn't contain all the information you need, or you don't like the layout or look of the workspace you created, you can customize it by clicking Modify this Workspace at the top right of the page and choosing the options you need.
There is much more to learn about Meeting Workspaces, so take a look at the materials referenced in the See Also section. Meeting Workspaces in Microsoft Office System 2003 offer a new way to help you keep it together.