Quick guide on syncing Microsoft Outlook and Salesforce – What tech admins must know!

Most of the time, a business may use multiple applications to administrate the process better. So, the major difficulty is the need for duplication of the events, contacts, and various tasks. This is the same in cases where you need to use both Outlook and Salesforce with the need to share data.

To tackle this issue, here we will see how to sync with Microsoft Outlook and Salesforce effectively. This effective syncing feature is available for Salesforce Lightning and Classic in all editions. Let’s see how to do it.

Syncing contacts

To sync contacts from Salesforce to Outlook – do ‘Read’ on Contacts by setting the sync direction as Salesforce to Outlook. You can set it both the ways by accessing “Read” and then “Edit” on contacts and then “Read” on the accounts with the sync direction set to Sync forward and backward.

Syncing events and tasks

To sync tasks and events from Outlook to Salesforce, first, go to “Read” and then “Edit” on the events and tasks and set the sync directions as Outlook to Salesforce. It is can also be synced vice-versa. To sync both ways, just “Read” and Edit” on the events and then set the sync direction to both ways.

Multi-day events

To do this properly, go to Multiday Events on the activities tab and “Sync recurring Salesforce tasks to Outlook.”

Some prerequisites

Ensure that all the Outlook folders contain the exact items you are planning to sync before downloading and running the Salesforce for Outlook. If you are planning to sync back from Outlook to Salesforce, then moving the record away from the Outlook folder which is synced will end up in deleting the record in Salesforce. Flosum.com suggests that if you are syncing backward, then removing the records from Salesforce deletes the same from Outlook.

Sync schedules

The syncing between Outlook and Salesforce is set based on your system activities. Tasks and events may automatically sync every 10 minutes or so, and the contacts sync each hour. However, if the system detects mouse or keyboard activity is not happening for around 30 minutes, then the frequency of syncing may be reset to 30 minutes. After a couple of hours of the system being inactive, the sync frequency for updates may change to hourly. If the inactivity is for four hours, then it may change to four hours and so on.

However, you can run the sync manually at any time as you like. As mentioned above, just access the system tray and then right click on Salesforce for Outlook icon and go to the Sync Now option.

Excluding unwanted records from syncing

You can options to custom set exclusion of files and records from synching even on choosing automatic syncing. Try the below methods.

You can specify to sync items which are marked as private in Outlook. If you don’t want to sync the private items, then open settings in Salesforce for Outlook and deselect the private items which you don’t want to be included for syncing.

If you sync the items which you mark as private in Outlook later, then these items will remain on Salesforce. But, the corresponding items on Salesforce will no longer receive any updates even if you modify those in Outlook.

On the other hand, if you want to avoid certain Outlook items from syncing, whether or not they are marked as Private, and simply mark them under the category of ‘Don’t Sync with Salesforce.’

Seamless syncing between these two authentic platforms helps the business administrators to save a lot of time and effort regarding sorting out data de-duplication and also ensures optimization of the administration process.


Lucy Jones
Lucy Jones
Lucy Jones is a developer with more than ten years of experience. She has previously worked for Flosum.com as a consultant.
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