Clutter is a new feature recently added to Exchange Online in Office 365 that could be a godsend to those of us who don’t keep their Inboxes clear on a regular basis. Once enabled it can learn from your email habits and automatically redirect messages of the type that you don’t interact with in to a ‘Clutter’ folder. The idea being that you should only see the important stuff in your Inbox ensuring you don’t miss them under a tidal wave of email that isn’t quite junk but doesn’t deserve an immediate response.

How to enable Clutter

By default Clutter in Office 365 is disabled but is quite easy to turn on and setup using the Outlook Web App (OWA). From the main Outlook screen click on the Gear symbol at the top right hand end of the page after the top navigation bar and click Options:

Options in OWA

If Clutter has been enabled on your account it will appear as an option under Mail > Automatic processing. As mentioned above Clutter is disabled so you have to click the button to ‘Separate items identified as Clutter’.

Turning on Clutter in OWA

Once you’ve done this you will then receive an email confirming Clutter has been turned on:

Email notification about Clutter

When you look at your Email Folders in OWA or Outlook you will see you have a new Clutter folder that will start to populate with messages automatically:

Clutter as a folder in your inbox

Clutter should learn from your habits and become a valuable productivity assistant but it may get things wrong from time to time. If it does you can either mark the item as not Clutter or simply drag it back to your Inbox and future similar emails will no longer be redirected. At the same time you can drag and drop email messages you do want filed as Clutter to your Clutter folder and you will help Clutter learn for the future.