Weekly Computer Tip # 335
27 March 2011

Create and insert frequently used text and graphics (Outlook 2007)

Do you have chunks of text that you use over and over again in your email messages? Perhaps you copy and paste them from other emails or you might have set up templates that you reuse? But why not have a look at the "Quick Parts" feature that allows you to store frequently used text and graphics, which can then be quickly inserted into your email as and when required. To give you some examples: I use them for directions to our training premises ("Once on Queen Edith's Way look out for the white and orange house with the orange gate. And no, I didn't buy the house to match my business cards.") or frequently asked questions ("Our scheduled Excel courses, including their prices, are accessible from course_schedule.php") but I'm pretty sure you can come up with and create your own boilerplate text.

Here's how:

To create a reusable "Quick Part":

  1. Create your email message as normal.
  2. Select the content that you want to store as a boilerplate, such as a logo or text.
  3. On the Insert tab, in the Text group, click Quick Parts, click Save Selection to Quick Part Gallery.
  4. Enter a name to identify the entry, which can also be used for shortcut purposes.
  5. Click OK.

To find and use a "Quick Part":

  1. Click where you want to insert a building block in the email.
  2. On the Insert tab, in the Text group, click Quick Parts. (Or why not once right-click the Quick Parts button and stick it on your Quick Access Toolbar?!)
  3. Click on the text of your choice.

Quick Parts have evolved from the AutoText feature found in earlier versions of Office. Therefore, when you want to insert a Quick Part, you can simply type its name and press F3, as you might have done in earlier versions of Outlook or Word.