Friday, October 1, 2010

Outlook reminders display the wrong due time


By Joe Dolittle

OutlookPower reader Chris Sowiak had an interesting question:

Some of our users are setting reminders in Outlook 2007. When the reminder is coming up (at the correct time) it is saying due in 8hr for example when it actually should be saying due in 15 mins. Any idea on why this would be happening?

We're thinking that your users are actually setting tasks with due dates, rather than true appointments.

It took us quite a while to figure this one out, and it turns out the question was actually answered by Microsoft MVP Diane Poremsky on her very cool Outlook Tips site.

Basically, Outlook tasks can now be scheduled, and reminders can be set. However, when you set a due date for a task, you're setting the date, not the time. Apparently Outlook just decides to default to a time, which is when it considers the business day to be over.

For some reason, the folks at Microsoft seem to think the business day ends at 5pm. I have news for them, I'm here editing at 3:45am and my business day isn't even close to over! Okay, to be fair, I woke up at 3pm. Such is the life of us online workers. Hey, at least I showered!