Setting delegate access on a mailbox

This article will explain how to set delegate access on a mailbox.

It is recommended that this is done on a staff member’s mailbox where delegate access is needed, in a personal assistant role for example. If you need a mailbox to do collaborative work with multiple colleagues a shared mailbox would be a better option. The request form for this is linked below. 

Shared Mailbox Request Form

Once access has been granted please direct the delegate to the knowledge base article linked below for how to access the mailbox. 

How to access a mailbox as a delegate

How to provide delegate access

Providing access to your mailbox (and your calendar) requires permissions to be granted in three separate places. The first is the top level of your Inbox (this will be your email address), the second is your actual Inbox folder (as well as any other sub-folders you would like to provide access to) and the third is the ‘delegate access’ section in Outlook. Instructions are provided below for each of these, and they must all be done to provide access to a delegate.

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The above screenshot illustrates the first two places where you must set delegate access. The one circled in red is the top-level folder and the blue are the sub-folders that you must set access for individually.

Top Level Delegate Access

First, right click on the top-level folder and select ‘folder permissions’. This will open a new window.

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Click on ‘add’ which will open the global address list. Search for the member of staff you would like to provide delegate permissions, double click their name, and then click ‘OK’. Once this has been done their name will have been added to the permissions list. Click on their name so it is highlighted, and we can begin to set permissions.

By default, the ‘permission level’ will be set to ‘None’. You can click this to get a list of preset permission roles rather than setting your own.

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Publishing Editor provides full level access to your mailbox, this is generally the option you would want to provide. If you select this option, you can then untick options to suit your requirements. For example, if I wanted someone to have full access but only have the ability to delete items that they had created themselves, I would tick ‘Own’ under ‘delete items’.  

‘Folder visible’ is the most important tick box as this will allow the delegate to open your mailbox, ensure that this is ticked.

Once you are satisfied click on ‘Apply’ in the bottom right and then ‘OK’ to close the window.

Individual Folder Access

You will need to set delegate access on the individual sub-folders that you want the delegate to be able to access as well. If you do not do this then the delegate will not be able to see them.

To do this, right click on the sub-folder you want to provide access to and click ‘properties’, which will open a similar window to the top-level access. Select the ‘permissions’ tab within that window.

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You will now be presented with the same permissions screen as top-level access. Go through the same procedure of adding the member of staff from the global address list and setting their permissions. Again, the ‘publishing editor’ role will generally satisfy your requirements.

Delegate Access Permissions

Finally, you will need to set delegate access in the actual ‘delegate access’ area of Outlook. You can do this by clicking on ‘file’ in the top left, ‘account settings’ and then ‘delegate access’.

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This will then bring up the following ‘delegate access’ window.

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Click on ‘add’ which will again bring up the global address list. Select the member of staff you are providing delegate access to and click ‘OK’. This will bring up the following window where you can set the permissions.

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Selecting the ‘editor’ permissions in all slots will provide full access and is generally what you would like to provide a delegate. If there is a certain aspect you would not like to provide permissions for, leave it as ‘none’.

Leave the ‘Delegate receives copies of meeting-related messages sent to me’ selected as this will allow them to manage meeting requests for you.

Once you are satisfied with the settings click ‘OK’ to all dialog boxes.

At this point all permissions have been set and the delegate will be able to access the Outlook Folders you have specified with the appropriate permissions.