For the most part, we all have our own individual email-based mailboxes, whether it is personal or for business use.  Typically, nobody else can access them, unless of course we give out our username and password (which would not be a good thing to do!).  But there are times, when it is necessary to create what is known as a “Shared Mailbox”.

This is a kind of mailbox in which multiple people across an organization need to access the same resources.  This would normally be such things as corporate information, getting access to support emails (such as to your IT Department), or any other cross functions, provide for a common calendar, and even view the work shifts for all of the employees in your organization.

There are other uses for an M365 shared mailbox, which include the following:

  • You can set up an alias so that you can send out group emails to certain clients, and have them respond to it;
  • You can use it to keep a former employee’s M365 mailbox active for transitional purposes;
  • You can use it in place of standardized email forwarding;
  • You can keep your PST files safe and secure.

How To Set Up A Shared Mailbox

It is important to note that not just everybody can create a shared mailbox, only your network administrator can actually do this. So to accomplish this task, follow these steps:

  1. Log into portal.microsoft.com, and from there, click on “Groups”
  2. From here, click on the “Shared Mailboxes” button.
  3. Now, click on “Add A Shared Mailbox”, as illustrated below:
    (SOURCE:  1).
    NOTES:
    *Fill in the name of the shared mailbox;
    *Create the Email username for the shared mailbox.
    *Both of the above can be seen with the red asterisk.
  4. Click on the “Add” button in the last illustration to create the shared mailbox.
  5. You will now be prompted to add your member list to the shared mailbox.  To do this, select   the “Add members to this mailbox” feature, as illustrated below:

    (SOURCE:  1).
  6. Now, select the “+Add members” functionality as illustrated in the last diagram.
  7. You will now be prompted to select and check mark those employees in your company with whom you want to give access to the shared mailbox to.  This is illustrated below:

    (SOURCE:  1).
    NOTES:
    *Click on “Save” after selecting the individuals.
  8. Once you have accomplished the last step, click on “Close”, and your new shared mailbox will then be created.

You can also create a shared mailbox by using PowerShell.  To do this, use this following command line to get started:

New-Mailbox -Shared -Name "[NAME OF MAILBOX]" -DisplayName  "[NAME OF MAILBOX]-Alias Sales | Set-Mailbox -GrantSendOnBehalfTo [NAME OF USER] | Add-MailboxPermission -User [NAME OF USER] -AccessRights FullAccess -InheritanceType All

(SOURCE:  2).

In order to finish this task, click here for more information.

The Advantages of Using a Shared Mailbox

Here are some of the key benefits:

  • It can work well for teams of up to five people, any of whom can reply to an email message that is sent to the shared mailbox;
  • You can keep your own email inbox organized, and even create a special rule to filter for emails that you may get a lot of from just one coworker;
  • You can share calendars and any associated contacts in your address book with other members in your team. But in this regard, be sure to implement the security features that are enabled so that you do not become a victim of a Phishing based attack;
  • Email messages, especially when you receive them from clients, will be responded to much quicker because your team will be able to access and view anything that comes into the inbox;
  • It can eliminate the need for long email threads as a result of a lot of forwarding.


The Disadvantages of Using A Shared Mailbox

Here are some of the key drawbacks:

  • It cannot scale up easily for large team usage, and you cannot link a shared mailbox with another one;
  • If an employee leaves the company and you store their email history in a shared mailbox, you must have a backup of the email to access it.
  • The shared mailbox does not keep delete and sent folders
  • There is no specific version history of who has replied to what Email in a shared mailbox;
  • Other than the shared calendar and contact list, there are really no other collaboration tools;
  • You run the risk of duplicated Emails, especially if your entire team responds to one in just a matter of a few minutes;
  • There is no real sense of ownership, as it is subconsciously assumed that other members of the team will respond to an Email;
  • It cannot meet compliance standards, especially those that have been set forth in the GDPR and the CCPA.

Conclusions

When your company first starts to use a shared mailbox (or even a few of them), a lot of time can be spent in trying to filter out for certain or unique messages.  This all stems from the fundamental lack of understanding of how they can be used efficiently.  At KAMIND IT, we can streamline this process for you.  Contact us today!!!

 

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