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How to Create a Poll In Microsoft Outlook


Microsoft Outlook logo

Need to quickly get feedback or answers to a question? Microsoft has added a quick poll feature, powered by Microsoft Forms, to both the Outlook client and Outlook Online. Here’s how it works.

The built-in poll feature, like the Quick Poll add-in, is only available for Office 365 and Microsoft 365. If you’re using a stand-alone version of Outlook such as Outlook 2016 or 2019, the poll option won’t be available to you.

A poll can be answered by anyone, no matter who provides their email. They don’t need a Microsoft, Office 365, or Microsoft 365 account, just a web browser and an internet connection. As such, it’s a much more complete solution than the old voting options.

Add a Poll in the Microsoft Outlook Desktop Client

Open the Microsoft Outlook application, and in a new email, click Insert > Poll.

The "Poll" option on the Insert ribbon tab.

A panel will open on the right-hand side of the email for you to enter your question and possible answers.

The Poll panel where a question and answers can be added.

You can only ask one question in an email poll, though you can allow for multiple answers. When the poll is complete, click the “Insert poll into email” button.

The "Insert poll into email" button.

The email’s subject line will change, and a link to the poll will be put into the body of the email.

An email with a poll inserted, showing the automatic subject and the link to the poll.

When you send the email to your recipients, they can click the link and answer the poll question. The email is automatically Cc’ed to you as well, so you remember to vote.

Add a Poll in Microsoft Outlook Online

Open Outlook’s website, and in a new email, click the three-dot menu icon at the bottom of the email and then select “Poll.”

The "Poll" option on the email menu.

A panel will open on the right-hand side of the email for you to enter your question and possible answers.

The Poll panel where a question and answers can be added.

You can only ask one question in an email poll, though you can allow for multiple answers. When the poll is complete, click the “Insert poll into email” button.

The "Insert poll into email" button.

The email’s subject line will change, and a link to the poll will be put into the body of the email.

An email with a poll inserted, showing the automatic subject and the link to the poll.

When you send the email to your recipients, they can click the link and answer the question. The email is automatically Cc’ed to you as well, so you remember to vote.

What Does the Poll Look like?

When people click the link you send, they’ll see a Microsoft Forms response page with your question.

The poll response page displayed in Microsoft Forms.

If you’re sending the poll to people inside of your organization, then Forms will attempt to fill in their email address automatically. Otherwise, they’ll have to fill in their email address themselves.

At the bottom of the poll is a “View Results” option.

The "View results" link at the bottom of the poll.

Any recipient can click on this button to see the results of the poll.

The basic results of the poll that any recipient can see.

However, they can’t see who voted for what, only the person who sent out the poll can do that.

How to See the Full Voting Results

When you add a poll to an email, Microsoft creates a read-only Microsoft Forms report in your Office 365 or Microsoft 365 account for you. To view the results, including who voted for what, open Microsoft Forms and find the poll you created.

The form created automatically in Microsoft Forms to hold the results of the poll.

Click on the poll to open it and then select the “Responses” tab.

The "Responses" tab on the form.

This will show you a breakdown of the results. Click “View Results” to see how each person voted, or select “Open in Excel” to export the results to a spreadsheet.

The "View results" and "Open in Excel" options in the responses tab.

Unlike a form you’ve created yourself, you can’t give collaboration rights to anyone else. So only you can see the full breakdown of the votes (unless you export them to a spreadsheet and share them with others).





This post was written by Rob Woodgate and was first posted to www.howtogeek.com



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