Email Setup in Business Central

In Business Central, users can add email addresses. There’s a plethora of reasons to do this, with the biggest use case being the ability to send customer and vendor facing documents from the system itself. This includes statements, reminders, remittance advices, invoices and more. In this post we will cover the different types of email account setup in Business Central, document sending profiles and email scenarios. We will then demonstrate sending emails directly from the system. Finally, we will show how to define user visibility when it comes to viewing sent emails.

Setting up email accounts in Business Central

The first step in email setup in Business Central is to create an email account. To set up email accounts, firstly navigate to the Email Accounts page. Click ‘New’, ‘Add an email account’ and then specify the type of account you’re looking to add. The options here are:

  • Microsoft 365
  • Current User
  • SMTP

After selecting one of the three options, the subsequent page’s fields will differ dependant on which you’ve selected. For a Microsoft 365 shared mailbox, you’ll be asked to specify the Account Name and Email Address. Selecting the Current User will use the email address tied to the account you’re logged into Business Central with. SMTP will require the most setup, asking you to specify things like the relevant Server URL.

After you’ve created an email account record on Business Central, we can move on.

This image shows the Email Accounts page. More specifically, it shows two email accounts which are of different types. On the first, which is a Current User account, the Process action bar is open, showing how you can set this particular email address to be the default for everything which doesn't have a scenario against it specifying otherwise. Creating an email account is the first step in performing email setup in Business Central.

You can also tell from this image that is not the default email account as the ‘Set as default’ action has colour and I can click it. This isn’t possible when an account is already set as the default.

Document Sending Profiles

Against Customer and Vendor records on Business Central, you will be able to specify a Document Sending Profile value. This value will dictate which way you communicate with the entity. Nowadays, this is typically set to email:

This image shows a Document Sending Profile record. Filling in the details here is key to email setup in Business Central. For each method of sending documents to customers or vendors, you'll need a separate record.

As you can see in the image above, the Default field is enabled. This dictates that for all entities without a Document Sending Profile suggesting otherwise, use this value.

In the Sending Options tab of a Document Sending Profile, you can see for Email, the value is Yes (Prompt for Settings). What this means is, each time you go to send an email from a record in Business Central, the system won’t send it automatically. You will have chance to see the message, adjust who it’s sent to and add any attachments.

If you have this set to Yes (Use Default Settings), it will send the email straightaway.

Which email accounts to send to?

On a Customer record, if you click ‘Customer’ and ‘Document Layouts’ in the ribbon, you’ll see this screen:

This image shows the Document Layouts screen which you can navigate to from a customer card. There is a Send To Email field here which you can populate, dictating which types of records are sent to which email addresses.

This is where you can identify for different types of records, which email account to send them to. You firstly specify the Report ID. Users have the ability to create multiple versions of the same report. So if you have any customers with specific requirements, they can have their own version of a report.

Email scenarios

Email scenarios allow users to default which account emails are sent from, for particular activities. For each email address you set up on the system, you can assign scenarios to them. For example, could send sales order confirmations.

How to create email scenarios

To start making email scenarios, head over to the Email Scenario Assignment page. Here, you will see a list of all the system’s set up email addresses. By clicking on one of the records, you can then choose to ‘assign scenarios’ in the ribbon:

This image displays the Email Scenario Assignment page. Against my email address, it shows the Sales Invoice scenario is attached. Email scenarios are key to an efficient email setup in Business Central.

As you can see, we currently have the Sales Invoice scenario assigned to my email account. Below is a list of all the different scenarios available to assign:

This image displays a list of all the different email scenarios you can choose from in Business Central. In total, there are 19 to choose from.

Simply choose the scenario you wish to assign to an email account. Once you’ve done so, this email address will be the default value employed when it comes to sending a record of a specified type. You can click ‘Unassign’ or ‘Reassign’ to remove or set the scenario to a different account. So whilst your ‘default’ email is set on the Email Accounts page, setting a scenario against a different account will override it.

Email scenario attachments

Against each scenario you create, you can specify attachments. To do so, on the Email Scenario Assignment page, click on one you’ve currently created. There should now be a Set Scenario Attachments action in the ribbon.

This image displays the actions that appear if you click on a scenario assigned to an email address. There is a 'Reassign' action which allows you to move this scenario to a different email address. The 'Unassign' action allows you to simply remove this scenario. There is also the 'Set Scenario Attachments' action which allows you to add files to a scenario, either by default or manually. We will cover this in more detail further on.

By clicking that, you’ll be taken to a page, titled by the record type you wish to assign attachments to. There, click ‘New’ and ‘Add File’. This will open your file explorer where you can select the attachment to add. Now, for any attachment you add, you can specify whether that attachment should appear on those records by default, or whether you have to add it manually. The types of things you might wish to add attachments for are T&Cs, privacy policies etc.

It might be that particular attachments are only applicable to particular types of invoice. In situations like that, you add an attachment but not set it to be applied by default.

Demonstrating email attachments

Against our sales invoice scenario, we have two attachments. As you can see, we have set the Terms & Conditions file to ‘Attach by Default’:

This image displays the attachments set against an email scenario. It also displays how one of the two files assigned is attached 'by default'. This means, whenever an email is created for this scenario, this file is automatically attached. The other you can manually add in a few extra clicks.

Let’s now go to a Posted Sales Invoice record and send an email. As we displayed earlier, the default email account is not the current user, However, it is the email address that covers sales invoices. So we can use this information to prove that email scenarios override default values.

On a posted invoice record, by clicking ‘Print/Send’ and ‘Send’, we will be able to preview the email and its details:

This image displays how to send an email from within a Business Central record. On the record, click 'Print/Send' and 'Send'. When you do so, based on your email setup in Business Central, you will either be prompted for settings or sent automatically.

The first thing to note is the ‘From’ value is using the email address from the Sales Invoice scenario.

This image displays how setting the email scenario against a particular email address, it dictates the 'From' value when sending the email. This is just a default value and it can be amended where appropriate.

Secondly, the Terms & Conditions attachment has pulled through automatically.

This image displays how the Terms & Conditions file is added automatically after setting the 'attach by default' on the email scenario.

If this email is one where you want to pull through other files, you can do so by clicking ‘Manage’ and ‘Add Files from Default Selection’.

This image displays how to add extra files to an email. For those files that you added to a scenario but didn't tick 'Attach by default', in the Attachments tab at the bottom of the email, click 'Manage' and 'Add Files from Default Selection'.

In doing so, it’s looking at the attachments saved uploaded against the Sales Invoice scenario. As you can see, the Privacy Policy is the only option as the Terms & Conditions file is already attached:

Following on from the previous image, this one displays the screen that appears after you click 'Add Files from Default Selection'. It simply shows the other files that are attached to a scenario. You can choose which you'd like to add to the email.

After selecting the Privacy Policy file, the only thing left to do is send the email!

Sending options

As mentioned earlier, you can send emails from posted records. You can also click ‘Posting’, ‘Post and Send’ to post the open record as well as email it straightaway.

Batch emails

To send emails out as a batch, simply highlight the records you wish to send emails for and follow the same steps as mentioned previously. Note, if you have Yes (Prompt for Settings) enabled on the Document Sending Profile, you may have to manually click ‘Send Email’ each time. This isn’t ideal, so if you’re batching emails together, make sure you have Yes (Use Default Settings) enabled instead. From the Posted Sales Invoices page, when you go to send a batch of emails, you’ll first get this message:

This image shows the options that appear after you've selected multiple records to email in a batch and then click 'Print/Send' and 'Print'. The options are:
Confirm the first profile and use it for all selected documents;
Confirm the profile for each document;
Use the default profile for all selected documents without confirmation.
If you are happy with your email setup in Business Central, the bottom option is the most efficient means of sending.

For efficiency’s sake, I used the bottom option and they sent immediately. To make sure your setup is correct, you may wish to select the first option. That way you check the setup is correct once and then it applies those settings to all the following records in the batch. Note, after sending a batch of emails, the records may not appear in the Sent Emails page for a few minutes. It’s usually instantaneous but worth noting. We will cover the Sent Emails page a little later.

Which users can see sent emails in Business Central?

Now that we’ve addressed email setup in Business Central, as well as sending emails, it’s time to address visibility. The first page I want to mention is User Email View Policies page. Here you can configure which emails are visible to other users. On the page, against any user, there are four options:

  • View own emails
  • View all emails
  • View if access to all related records
  • View if access to any related records

Whilst the top two are self-explanatory, I’ll explain the difference between the latter two. The ‘view if access to all related records’ policy means users can see emails sent from other accounts, if the user has access to the record the email was sent from and all other related records. Microsoft use the example that a user could see an email relating to an invoice if the user has permission to access both the customer and invoice record. You should keep in mind that the system automatically applies this policy as a default if you don’t specify another.

The ‘view if access to any related records’ is similar but more powerful. Instead of requiring permission to access all related records, the user will only require permission to access at least one record, to see the email.

The Sent Emails page in Business Central

Now that you’ve defined who can see which emails, let’s check which emails have been sent. To do so, navigate to the Sent Emails page. Here you will see a list of all sent emails.

Here, users can filter the records by sent date. To do this, amend the date in the ‘Show sent emails after’ field. As you’d expect, the earlier you set this, the more results there will be. You can also navigate to related records from sent emails. To do so, highlight the appropriate line and click Show Source in the ribbon. Here you can easily navigate to the related record.

The Edit and Send action opens up the email’s settings, allowing you to amend a second email before sending it. Finally, users can ‘resend’ emails using the action of the same name. This is very similar to the previous action. The only difference is ‘resend’ won’t prompt you for settings, allow you to edit the text or who you are sending it to.

The Email Outbox page in Business Central

The Email Outbox page holds emails which are in draft form, or have errors. Where an email has an error, the system prevents you from sending it. Again, against any of these, you can see the record to which they relate, by clicking Show Source.

For those emails which have errors, you can click Show Error to see what is causing this. Typically, these will be permission related errors. You define which mailbox users can send emails from in the users exchange server, not in Business Central.

Closing remarks

Thanks for reading. We hope that helps you optimise your email setup in Business Central. If you have any comments or queries, please get in contact with us. If there’s any topics you’d like to see us provide a guide for, make sure to let us know. Lastly, to never miss one of our posts, make sure to follow us on LinkedIn.

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