Exchange 2010 – Out of Office for HelpDesk


One of the pains of looking after Exchange 2010 is putting in an Out of Office message for someone who forgot to do it before they went away, and either can’t or won’t do it themselves remotely. If you’re lucky enough to be able to delegate this task out to others, you can easily do so with “Role Based Access Control”. There’s a nice built in group called ‘Help Desk’ which gives the members access to everyone’s Outlook Web Access Options (not their actual emails). These options include Out of Office as well as several other useful settings that are not particularly private or contain confidential information.

To do this, from the Exchange Management Console go to Toolbox > Role Based Access Control (RBAC) User Editor. This will bring up a web page that is a part of Outlook Web Access – log in with the relevant credentials for Exchange Administration, and you can navigate to the Roles & Auditing Section:


From this, you can double click on the Help Desk entry from the list of Role Groups, and add members to the list.

Once this is done, the users who were added to the group can access other user’s Out of Office by logging onto Outlook Web Access, going to Options > Set Automatic Replies. You’ll be greeted with this screen:

auto replies

From here, you can drop down the ‘Manage Myself’ menu and choose ‘Another User…’, select your user and you’ll see the selected users options screen, allowing you to set Out of Office.

Hope that helps!

Update 7th October 2014:

I had someone ask as the above didn’t work for them, but it was due to one of the Assigned Roles being removed against Help Desk. They should be:

Assigned Roles:
Message Tracking
User Options
View-Only Recipients

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