Finding Meeting Rooms and Spaces in Outlook


Last Updated on July 1, 2020 by GrahamWalsh

As we are all starting to plan to return to work, finding meeting rooms can be an issue. One thing I am seeing organisations plan is the meeting space and guidance on numbers of people in meeting rooms. You have many options on how to name your meeting spaces and maybe include the number of people in the description etc. One handy thing for Microsoft Teams Rooms (MTR) is using Room Lists and this is really required for MTRs. It means users can filter by location to see the available rooms in that particular location. Another option is setting the Resource Config which means you can show some features of the room equipment. This is visible in all Outlook platforms.

We also have some exciting new features coming to the Crestron Flex Microsoft Teams Rooms and Zoom Rooms shortly that will assist with room capacity. More in a few weeks.

Prior to all of this, you need to ensure you have the Room Resource Account setup. I have detailed this here.

Creating a Resource Config in Exchange

One optional feature on Exchange Resource Mailbox configuration is the ability to add a description to each room, so when people are booking the rooms, they know what features are available in each space. This is using ResourceConfig settings.

### Creating Meeting Room Resource Properties - visible via Description 
### This allows customisation on your tenant 
### This shows what custom config if any
### Let's set a custom descritpion of MicrosoftTeamsRoom.  Unfortunately you can't have space or underscores.
Set-ResourceConfig -ResourcePropertySchema "Room/MicrosoftTeamsRoom"
### Now we can add other attibutes
Set-ResourceConfig -ResourcePropertySchema @{Add="Room/MagicWhiteboard"}
Set-ResourceConfig -ResourcePropertySchema @{Add="Room/VTC"}
### Now we are going to Room 02 with MicroosftTeamsROom and MagicWhiteboard
Set-Mailbox "Flex Teams Room 02" -ResourceCustom "MicrosoftTeamsRoom"
Set-Mailbox "Flex Teams Room 02" -ResourceCustom @{Add="MagicWhiteboard"}
### Room 05 will just have VTC set
Set-Mailbox "Flex Teams Room 05" -ResourceCustom "VTC"

Now, this is what it looks like in Outlook when you click on Location to find a room.

Microsoft Outlook Desktop Room Selector
Microsoft Outlook Desktop Room Selector

Set Place

There is also another feature that I’ve seen in Outlook Web Access and that is the ability to filter by the feature of a room, the room capacity, or what floor it is on. This is known as set-place. It is only available in Office 365 Exchange Online. Thanks to Pat Richard and Greg Taylor for helping me find this. There is an official blog post on this here.

The full list of features available in Set-Place is detailed below. It will come to other Outlook platforms at some point as well, but for now it is only Exchange Online and Outlook web access.

   [-Identity] <RecipientIdParameter>
   [-AudioDeviceName <String>]
   [-Building <String>]
   [-Capacity <System.Int32>]
   [-City <String>]
   [-CountryOrRegion <CountryInfo>]
   [-DisplayDeviceName <String>]
   [-Floor <System.Int32>]
   [-FloorLabel <String>]
   [-GeoCoordinates <GeoCoordinates>]
   [-IsWheelChairAccessible <Boolean>]
   [-Label <String>]
   [-Phone <String>]
   [-PostalCode <String>]
   [-State <String>]
   [-Street <String>]
   [-Tags <String[]>]
   [-VideoDeviceName <String>]
Outlook Web Access Room Filter Feature
Outlook Web Access Room Filter Feature

Here is the PowerShell to set some examples and blow is an image once the properties have been replicated.

Set-Place -Identity "Flex Teams Room 02" -AudioDeviceName Crestron -VideoDeviceName "Crestron Microsoft Teams Room" -Capacity 6 -DisplayDeviceName "32inch Samsung LCD" -Floor 0 -Tags "Skype Enabled","Teams Enabled","Video Interop Enabled" -PostalCode "KT15 2HJ" -Phone 08715258341 -CountryOrRegion GB -City Weybridge -IsWheelChairAccessible $false -GeoCoordinates "51.372997;-0.479396"
Status of features in a meeting room with set-place

Creating Room Lists

One feature that you also should do for Teams Meetings and that is to create a Room List. Full details can be seen here. There are just two lines of PowerShell to run. The first is to create the Room List and then second is to add the Resource Mailbox to that Room List. Note that there is a limit of 100 rooms that will be returned in a query, so may need to break down to Building and Floors for large organisations.

### Cresting a Room List per site/floor ###
New-DistributionGroup -Name "Crestron London Office" -RoomList
Add-DistributionGroupMember -Identity "Crestron London Office" -Member
New Meeting in Outlook Web Access
New Meeting in Outlook Web Access
New Meeting Room List in Microsoft Teams
New Meeting Room List in Microsoft Teams
Exchange Room List
After clicking on the Room List, 100 rooms are returned

Any questions, let me know below.

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