Microsoft says you need a break — its new Outlook feature makes it easy to take one

Microsoft Outlook now has an option to set scheduling rules that ensure people have time for breaks throughout the day. With Outlook, people can individually set scheduling defaults that automatically shorten meetings. Starting today, Outlook supports setting organization-wide scheduling defaults that shorten meetings and create space for breaks across an entire company.

Microsoft’s latest Work Trend Index research discusses the importance of having breaks between work. It’s easy to jump from meeting to meeting and task to task in a work environment. It’s even easier to go to back-to-back meetings when working remotely since even meetings with different teams are just a click away. The ability to set organization-wide scheduling defaults should help make sure that people have gaps in their schedules.

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Microsoft explains the new functionality in a recent post. As an example, you can set to have breaks at the beginning or end of meetings. You can also select how long you want those breaks to be. Rules are customizable as well. For example, you could have five-minute breaks before each 30-minute meeting and 15-minute breaks after 1-hour meetings.

Microsoft has a support page to help you set up and customize your scheduling rules.

According to the support page, you only have the option to make events start or end early on Outlook on the web or the Windows Outlook client.

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