How to file away all communications, not just email     

Many people, particularly at work, file away all of their email in case they need it for future reference. Others don’t keep everything but of these, many keep the important emails, and perhaps categorize them into Outlook folders.

PC-based voice communications and instant messages are just as important as email, and are as worthy of filing away for future reference. However, these are generally lost – i.e. people don’t store them away and archive them as they do with email. This is partly because there are no facilities to allow them to easily do this, or the facilities exist but users are not familiar with them and don’t use them.

The steps below show you how to set up Microsoft Outlook so that voice communications, SMS and instant messages are filed away in exactly the same way as email. Once you have set Outlook up to do this, you can use all of Outlook’s facilities to manage, archive, sort, categorize, flag and backup voice communications and instant messages along with your email.

1. If you don’t already use Skype, download and install it from here. If you don’t already have a headset or a Skype Phone, check-out our store.

2. If you don’t already have Skylook, download and install it from here.

3. Start Outlook. If you are running Skylook for the first time, you will see the Skylook licensing wizard and the Skylook Welcome wizard. Follow the prompts to ensure you have Skylook set up the way you want.

4. Start a phone call or PC-to-PC call, either from Outlook or directly from the Skype application. (This procedure still works for calls that you do not start from within Outlook).

5. Complete the call.

6. Go to the “Skylook Conversations” folder in Outlook – there will be an item for your call, containing an attached recording of the call.
Call item in Skylook Conversations folder

7. This item can now be treated just like an email. You can copy it to a folder to categorize it, you can flag it, you can archive it or use any of the other Outlook item management capabilities.

8. Now send a Skype text message to someone. (Again, you can initiate this directly from Skype, or from within Skylook – all text messages are captured regardless of how they are sent).

9. Go to the “Skylook Conversations” folder again. There will be another item, this time containing the text chat:
Archived Instant Message

(Note: You won’t get a separate item for each instant message. Any replies that occur within 5 minutes will be appended to the existing item, so that a single text chat thread generally appears within a single Outlook item).

If you have any problems getting this to work, contact us for assistance.