Clutter retires on Wednesday 19 October 

Bethany Reid
Wednesday 12 October 2022

This semester, we’re retiring Clutter. Clutter is a feature in Outlook that moves low-priority email to a separate folder for you to review later. Outlook moves emails to Clutter or keeps them in your Inbox if you’ve previously read or ignored emails from that sender. 

Why is Clutter retiring? 

In 2020, Microsoft announced its plans to eventually retire Clutter. From 2021, this meant that any new staff or students would not have a Clutter folder but would have the option to enable Focused Inbox instead (Clutter’s replacement). 

As a result, staff and students don’t have consistent experiences in Outlook; some have an active Clutter folder, and some have Focused Inbox. Those with Clutter are also more likely to miss emails altogether as they were in a separate folder with no notification, such as University announcements and weather warnings. To improve support, offer a more consistent experience, and minimise missed messages, IT Services will turn off Clutter on Wednesday 19 October

Turn on Focused Inbox to filter low-priority messages 

Microsoft stated that they are transitioning away from Clutter towards Focus Inbox as it allows you to manage your incoming emails in a single folder. Focused Inbox uses the same technology as Clutter by sorting your email into ‘Focused’ and ‘Other’ tabs within your inbox. 

If you see an important email in your ‘Other’ tab, you can move to Focused to ensure you don’t miss it in future. Vice versa, you can move low-priority emails from Focused to Other. By moving emails to your preferred tab, Outlook will learn from your behaviour and predict which emails belong in either tab. 

Turn on Focused Inbox

Can I switch off Focused Inbox? 

Staff and students can turn off Focused Inbox in Outlook using the following Microsoft guide

If you’d like to explore alternative strategies for managing your Inbox with a range of other Outlook tools, register for the Outlook: Efficient Email Management course on the Personal Development Management System (PDMS). 

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