About this article
A shared mailbox(or shared inbox) is a mailbox that multiple users can use to read and send email messages. A typical use case would be a firstname.lastname@example.org mailbox. Typically a shared mailbox is delegated to a user through the Office 365 admin as shown below. This allows users to automatically get shared mailboxes in their Outlook client by being authenticated with their own user. In some cases shared mailboxes are manually added by the users with the shared mailbox credentials.
Support for shared mailboxes within Templafy is complex and depends on the requirements of the organization. A crucial differentiation is if the organization needs users to get the user profile of the shared mailbox or if they need a separate email signature design for the shared mailbox. In some cases they might need both.
Subscription method(Outlook for Desktop)
The simplest method is the subscription method. The shared mailbox user is provisioned into the Templafy tenant either by SSO or by email authentication and then the "Allow others to subscribe to this user profile" checkbox is enabled on the user profile. The users then subscribe to the profile of the shared mailbox user.
In this case, the users will only get the user profile of the shared inbox but retain the email signature design(s) for their own user. Also, the user profile will only get updated manually(in the case of email authentication) or can be tied to claims that are updated every time the shared mailbox user is authenticated or automatically via SCIM.
Valid for domains with added inbox method(Outlook for Desktop)
The valid for domain method with added inbox allows you to distribute the design for a shared mailbox signature to Outlook on Desktop using the "Valid for domains" field and ensuring that it matches the shared mailbox address. In this case, the shared inbox user doesn't need to be provisioned into Templafy.
However, the shared mailbox must be added as a separate account in the Outlook client. It's not enough that the user is simply delegated the mailbox. Often, organizations will delegate their shared mailboxes in which case this solution won't work. However, it works well if they have few shared mailboxes and are willing to manually add them. They will need the password for the shared mailbox to be reset in order to add the account. The process for adding the mailbox is shown below but doesn't include the password portion which will also be required.
The option to subscribe to a user profile using this method still exists but there will be duplicate signatures. One signature with the main user profile and one signature with the shared inbox user profile. To get the shared inbox user profile, the shared inbox user must be provisioned into Templafy.
Dropdown in profile method(Outlook for Desktop)
A dropdown field in the user profile can also be used to get the design of a shared inbox synchronized into Outlook for Desktop. The advantage of this method is that it allows the user to create multiple user profiles with different shared signatures. The steps are as follows:
- Create a data source with the options for the different signatures
- Create a dropdown field in the User Profile that allows the user to select between the different shared inboxes and set the data selection ID to "SHAREDINBOX"
- Create a filter for each shared inbox email signature design using the data source selection ID
The user can now choose a shared mailbox to use in the given user profile. Multiple user profiles can be created in the case of multiple shared mailbox signatures.
Email signature server method(for all devices but without previews)
The email signature server can be used to attach email signatures for shared mailboxes. However, the Templafy email signature add-ins can't be used in this case as they would nullify any attempt by the email signature server to attach the correct email signature. The downside being that users won't see previews of their email signatures, be able to switch between signatures, all the shared mailbox users must be provisioned into Templafy, onboarded and have the O365 signature enabled for them.
Using this method you can apply the signature either by using the "Valid for domains" field or by setting up a filter for the email or other value.
A signature setup for shared mailboxes is dependent on a number of factors. The table below lists the different methods and advantages and disadvantages for each.
|Valid for domains with added inbox||Outlook on-prem||
|Dropdown in profile||Outlook on-prem||
|Email signature server||All devices||