Creating a shared mailbox

Important Note

  • As part of the move to Exchange Online User, Shared and Resource Mailboxes can take up to 1 hour to provision. Following receipt of the ‘success notification’ the creation process will commence and the mailbox temporarily assigned a ‘MigrationPending’ status. Once complete, the status will update to ‘Active’ confirming a successful mailbox creation and allowing access.

    You can check the status of the account from the User Management area in the portal.

  • It is important to not make any changes to the newly created account until it is in an ‘Active’ state with a mailbox location of ‘Exchange Online’. Editing any attributes, such as email alias, may disrupt the provisioning process.

A shared mailbox (also known as a generic mailbox) is a type of mailbox that can be accessed by a group of users from the same organisation. The shared mailbox may be used for several reasons (e.g. a district nursing team may have a shared mailbox for incoming referrals that the entire team has access to so anyone on duty can read or action the email). To access the shared mailbox users must first be granted ‘Send As’ or ‘Full Access’ permissions by their Local Administrator.

To create a shared mailbox:

Click Admin in the navigation bar at the top of the screen in the NHSmail portal and and select User Management from the drop down menu.

selecting user management

Click Add at the top left of the screen and select Shared Mailbox from the drop down menu.

Type the shared mailbox Display Name into the text box. Display names must be less than 250 characters and may contain letters, numbers and any of the following characters – , ; . () & []

Give mailbox a name

Select the Organisation from the drop down list. If appropriate, select the Organisational Unit by clicking the + next to the organisation name to expand the list.

Type the shared mailbox Email Name into the text box. An email address will be automatically generated after the Email Name is entered. It will begin with the organisation short name.

Click Hide from address lists if you would not like the shared mailbox to display in the NHS Directory.

Check the tick box to hide from address list

If you do not click this box, users of NHSmail will be able to search for the shared mailbox on the NHS Directory, but will not be able to see who the members of the shared mailbox are. Only users accessing via the Outlook Desktop Application will be able to view the members of a shared mailbox.

Enter a description of the mailbox which will be shown in the directory

Give the mailbox a description

The maximum length of the description field is 1024 characters

Next, click Add to assign members and then owners to the shared mailbox.

  • Members may view and send emails using the shared mailbox’s email address.
  • The owner/s of the mailbox is the person/s responsible for its use. They will normally be the person who requests users to be added/removed from the shared mailbox. They have the same ability to read and send emails as members.
  • You can select the quick access option to ‘Add myself as an owner’ if required.

After selecting Add, search for members and owner using their email address or display name. After locating the relevant user you want to add as member or owner, select the box on the left-hand side of the screen and then click Select’ to assign them to the mailbox.

Click Create at the bottom of the page once you have entered all required information including adding the mailbox members and owners.

A success notification will be displayed:

For a full list of FAQs around the mailbox create process please visit this article

Updated on 14/05/2021

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