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Streamline Decision-Making with Outlook Polls: Gather Feedback Efficiently

Creating a Poll in Outlook: Streamlining Decision-Making ProcessesIn today’s fast-paced world, effective decision-making is crucial. Whether it’s deciding on a team lunch spot or determining a meeting time that works for everyone, gathering input from colleagues or friends can be a time-consuming task.

Luckily, Microsoft Outlook offers a convenient solution to this quandary: the ability to create polls. By utilizing this feature, you can streamline the decision-making process and obtain feedback from recipients in a simple and efficient manner.

In this article, we will explore the steps to create a poll in Outlook, discuss compatibility across different versions of the software, and delve into how recipients can view and respond to polls.

Creating a Poll in Outlook

Steps to Create a Poll

Creating a poll in Outlook is a straightforward process that can be accomplished in just a few simple steps. By following these guidelines, you’ll be able to create a poll and send it out to recipients in no time:


Open a new email in Outlook: Start by opening Outlook and creating a new email message. 2.

Enable the “Voting Buttons” option: In the toolbar, navigate to the “Options” tab, which will bring up a drop-down menu. From that menu, select “Use Voting Buttons” and choose from the predefined options (“Approve;Reject,” “Yes;No,” “Yes;No;Maybe”) or create your custom set of options.

3. Compose your poll question and add answer choices: In the body of the email, write your poll question and input your answer choices.

If you chose to create custom options, simply separate them with semicolons. 4.

Add recipients and send the email: Specify the recipients of your poll by entering their email addresses in the “To” field. Once your email is complete, hit the “Send” button to distribute your poll.

Outlook Versions and Compatibility

Outlook offers poll creation functionality across various versions, ensuring compatibility for users with different software setups. Here are the supported Outlook versions for creating polls:


Outlook for Microsoft 365: This version, compatible with web, desktop, and mobile devices, offers the most up-to-date features and integrations. Users can seamlessly create polls using the same steps outlined earlier.

2. Outlook 2007-2019: These previous versions of Outlook also allow users to create polls, albeit with slight differences in the user interface.

Regardless, the essential steps remain the same, with the ability to enable the “Voting Buttons” and include poll question and answer choices.

How Recipients See the Poll in Outlook

Viewing the Poll in the Reading Pane

Recipients of a poll in Outlook have the convenience of viewing and responding to it within the Reading Pane, eliminating the need to open a separate window. Here’s how they can access and vote in the Reading Pane:


Open the email: Upon receiving the email containing the poll, recipients can open it directly in the Reading Pane by selecting it in their inbox. 2.

Locate the voting options: In the Reading Pane, recipients will find the voting options immediately visible below the poll question. They can choose their preferred answer by clicking on the dropdown list and selecting the appropriate response.

3. Submit the vote: Once the recipient selects their preferred option, the vote is automatically registered and reflected in the poll results.

Viewing the Poll in a Separate Window

Alternatively, recipients may prefer to view and respond to the poll in a separate window for a more focused experience. The steps to do so are as follows:


Open the poll in a new window: Recipients can open the poll in a separate window by either double-clicking on the email or right-clicking and selecting “Open in New Window.”

2. Locate the voting options: In the separate window, the voting options will appear visually distinct, usually grouped in the “Respond” or “Vote” section.

3. Cast the vote: Recipients can select their preferred answer by clicking on the corresponding option and then submitting their vote.

The separate window can be closed once the vote has been registered. Conclusion:

The ability to create and distribute polls using Outlook is a valuable tool for streamlining decision-making processes.

By following the steps outlined in this article, users can efficiently gather feedback and opinions from recipients while maintaining compatibility across different versions of Outlook. Furthermore, recipients can easily view and respond to polls either within the Reading Pane or in a separate window, ensuring a smooth and convenient experience.

With Outlook’s poll creation feature, collaborative decision-making has never been more accessible. So why wait?

Start creating polls in Outlook today and simplify your decision-making processes.

Reviewing the Results of the Outlook Poll

Receiving Email Responses

Once you have sent out your poll in Outlook, it’s time to sit back and wait for the responses to roll in. When recipients receive your email and take the time to vote on the poll, their responses will be sent back to you via email.

Outlook conveniently collects and organizes these responses, making it easy for you to review them.

When a recipient responds to the poll, Outlook automatically generates an email response, which includes the recipient’s vote.

These response emails will appear in your inbox, allowing you to keep track of the poll results. To make it easier to identify these response emails, Outlook typically displays the subject line with an added prefix like “RESPONSE:” or “RE:” followed by the original subject line.

To keep your inbox organized and prevent these response emails from getting lost among other messages, you can create a rule in Outlook that automatically moves all response emails to a designated folder. This way, you can easily access and review the responses whenever you need to, without cluttering your main inbox.

Reviewing All Answers

After you have received multiple responses to your poll, Outlook provides a simple way to review all the answers in a clear and organized manner. To access the consolidated results, follow these steps:


Open the original email containing the poll: Locate the email you initially sent out with the poll. Double-click on it to open the email in a new window.

2. Access the poll results: In the email window, click on the “Tracking” button found in the toolbar at the top.

This will open a drop-down menu. 3.

View the poll responses: From the drop-down menu, select “View Voting Responses.” This action will open a separate window displaying the poll results. Within this separate window, you’ll find a detailed summary of the responses received for each answer option.

The responses are neatly organized, allowing you to quickly gauge the overall consensus or distribution of votes. If you included custom answer choices, Outlook will present the responses in a clear and comprehensive manner.

To further analyze the results, Outlook also provides options to export the responses to a spreadsheet or a file in Microsoft Excel format. By selecting “Export to Excel,” you can seamlessly transfer the poll results to a separate file for further analysis or presentation purposes.

Moreover, Outlook allows you to sort the poll results by different criteria, such as response time or specific participants. This provides flexibility in examining the data, helping you identify patterns or trends among the responses.

In addition to the consolidated results, individual responses from recipients can be reviewed as well. By browsing through the response emails in your inbox, you can understand each person’s vote and any additional comments they may have provided.

This allows for a more in-depth analysis of the poll results, gaining a better understanding of the reasoning behind each individual’s vote. When reviewing the poll answers, it’s important to keep in mind that the results are based solely on the responses received.

If the poll was sent to a limited number of participants, the results may not necessarily represent a broad consensus. However, Outlook’s poll feature provides a reliable and efficient method to gather feedback, saving time and effort in decision-making processes.

By utilizing the poll creation and review features in Outlook, you can effectively gather, analyze, and interpret the responses from your colleagues, clients, or friends. The ability to receive email responses and review all answers provides a comprehensive overview of the poll results, allowing you to make more informed decisions based on the collective input of the participants.


The ability to review the results of an Outlook poll is a powerful tool for decision-makers. By receiving email responses and easily reviewing all answers, users can gain valuable insights and make informed decisions.

Outlook’s organized approach to collecting and presenting the poll results ensures that the data is easily accessible and can be analyzed effectively. With this feature, Outlook continues to be a reliable and user-friendly platform for streamlined decision-making.

So, start creating polls in Outlook and leverage the power of collective input for more successful outcomes. In conclusion, creating polls in Outlook is a valuable and efficient tool for streamlining decision-making processes.

By following simple steps, users can create polls and distribute them to recipients, allowing for easy feedback collection. Outlook’s compatibility across various versions ensures accessibility for all users.

Recipients can view and respond to polls either in the Reading Pane or a separate window, providing convenience and flexibility. Additionally, Outlook’s ability to receive email responses and review all answers allows for comprehensive analysis of the results.

This feature empowers decision-makers to make informed choices based on collective input. With Outlook’s poll feature, collaboration and efficiency are enhanced, enabling more successful outcomes.

So, unlock the power of Outlook polls and revolutionize your decision-making process.

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