Tip of the day: #GetProductive by setting Flags WITH alarms in Lotus Notes

Mat Newman  October 11 2011 11:35:49
Lotus Notes not only enables users to "Flag" a message, it also allows users to set an Alarm on that flag to go off at a specific time.  Using Flags with Follow-up alarms is a really useful way of tracking your "To Action" items in Lotus Notes generated by incoming email, especially when you are not able to action that message immediately.

A great feature of using Flags with Alarms is that you can then get these messages OUT of your Inbox - which reduces the clutter - while still allowing you to keep track of messages that require you to "Action" them in some way.

Don't forget, in Lotus Notes it DOES NOT matter where a message has been filed (If you put messages into folders), once you have flagged a message for "Follow-Up", ALL of these messages are visible from your Mail database's Navigator using the "Follow-Up" view. (note: Unless you deleted the message!)

Image:Tip of the day: #GetProductive by setting Flags WITH alarms in Lotus Notes

Get Productive, use Follow-Up flags with Alarms in Lotus Notes to keep track of Actionable items!

1Keith Brooks  10/12/2011 1:34:21  
Tip of the day: #GetProductive by setting Flags WITH alarms in Lotus Notes

If you like this, see my follow up post about how to color code the flags.

{ Link }

2Mat Newman

10/12/2011 5:49:35  Tip of the day: #GetProductive by setting Flags WITH alarms in Lotus Notes

@1, Keith: Great follow-up post mate, now if only IBM allowed users to choose those colours themselves, instead of having to change the template's design. THAT is something that Outlook users CAN do.

Mat Newman IBM Champion

3Martin  10/12/2011 6:16:27  
Tip of the day: #GetProductive by setting Flags WITH alarms in Lotus Notes

Mat, Is there any way to show follow up on the Day-At-A-Glance or in the calendar?

4Mat Newman

10/12/2011 8:39:06  Showing Follow-Up’s in the Calendar

@3, Martin: Sure you can, it's just Data, and it's in Notes, so you can do just about anything :-)

Seriously though; you need designer access to the Mail Database to add this feature. A message that's been marked with a Follow-up will have a number of additional fields in it, the key one's for Calendar integration being FollowUpDate and FollowUpTime. Every calendar entry in your Notes Mail Database has a combination of CalendarDateTime, a StartDate and StartTime. You can include Messages marked with Follow-ups simply by modifying the design of the ($Calendar) views selection formula in your Mail database to include records that have the FollowUpDate field in them. Simply change the ($Calendar) view's select criteria to:

SELECT @IsAvailable(CalendarDateTime) | @IsAvailable(FollowUpDate)

Once those records (the Notes that include the Follow-Up flags) are included in the view, change the FIRST column to include @IF formula's to cater for FollowUpDate/FollowUpTime wherever you see a reference to CalendarDateTime, StartDate or StartTime, like this:

StartTime :=@If(@IsAvailable(FollowUpDate);FollowUpTime;@Time(CalendarDateTime));

Datelist:= @If(AppointmentType="2";@Explode(@TextToTime(@Text(StartDateTime) + "-" + @Text(EndDateTime))) ;

@Explode(@TextToTime(@Text(CalendarDateTime) + "-" + @Text(EndDateTime))) );

@If(@IsAvailable($CSVersion) & @IsAvailable(TaskType); @TextToTime(@Text(DateList)+ " " + @Text(@Time(CalendarDateTime))); AppointmentType = "0":"1":"2":"3":"4";CalendarDateTime;@IsAvailable(FollowUpDate);@TextToTime(@Text(FollowUpDate) + " " + @Text(FollowUpTime));@TextToTime(@Text(DateList) + " " + @Text(StartTime)))

If you need more information, message me by using the "About.Me" link on this page.

Mat Newman IBM Champion

5Brian Sloan  01/04/2012 10:38:09  
Tip of the day: #GetProductive by setting Flags WITH alarms in Lotus Notes

Where does an e-mail go once it been put in the follow-up folder and the flag has been removed?

6Michael  05/12/2012 7:08:59  
Tip of the day: #GetProductive by setting Flags WITH alarms in Lotus Notes

Thanks for the tip.

I have a default set follow up alarms that sends an e-mail to my alphanumeric pager.

Unfortunately, sending e-mail notification is not in the "calendar & to do"/alarms preferences like it is with the mail/"follow up" preferences.

Do you know how to set Notes up so that all calendar and to do items have a default alarm with e-mail notification? Is this something that can be enabled or would it have to be done through and agent? If by agent, any tips?

Mat Newman

THE Lotus Notes Guy. Productivity Guru. Social Evangelist. IBM Champion for IBM Collaboration Solutions, 2011/2012/2013. IBMer. Views are my own.

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Mat Newman

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