Hidden Gems: An Intro to Great but Underutilized Tools

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Shawn Mauser – Librarian – Ann Richards School for Young Women Leaders

On my campus I’m the librarian-o-all-trades, and one of those trades is troubleshooting and looking for tools that will help my students and faculty work smarter, not harder. 

This is great because one of my favorite avoidance behaviors is poking around in the programs we use everyday looking for things that might make life a little easier if we only knew about them. 

Today I want to introduce you to one of my little discoveries. 

The Template Tool in Microsoft Outlook. 

This is one of those extra little buttons at the bottom of the composition page of an email that’s easy to miss unless it occurs to you to look for it as a result of the thought, “I wonder if there’s a tool…”. 

Basically, the template tool is used to recreate messages that you have to send repeatedly. For example, I use it to create the messages sent to kids about their technology requests. 

Here’s a quick three minute how-to.

Oh, and a couple of pointers before signing off…

  1. Before clicking on the template you wish to use, make sure your cursor is sitting in the right spot. The template tool will place the text wherever your cursor happens to be.
  2. Annoyingly, you are limited to just so many templates. If you try to create too many, you will receive an error message telling you the save couldn’t be completed. 

1 Comment

  1. Thanks Shawn. I was just going to look up how to do this. Device management is even more exhausting than late/LOST notices in the library.

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