Error Proofing Email Attachments


    Dan Evans' VBA Scripts – Outlook Attachment Checker etc

    LifeHacker Post

    Have you ever composed an email, meaning to attach a file, even saying something like “see the attached file…” and then you forget to actually attach the file?

    I do this all the time. I could put a post it note on my laptop that says “BE CAREFUL: Do not forget to attach attachments,” but warning signs are not effective error proofing.

    Thankfully, there are software methods available for error proofing this, with Outlook or other email clients.

    The first link, up top, is a Visual Basic script that you can install on your Outlook software. I've tried it and it works just fine. The second link, from LifeHacker, has other software error-proofing methods as well as some process methods for error proofing, including:

    Type “attachment” where the @ sign should be in the recipient box. Delete it after you've put the attachment(SsSsS) on.

    Process based error proofing can work, but you have to be disciplined to follow the process. For me, I'm glad I have the script installed!!

    Please check out my main blog page at

    The RSS feed content you are reading is copyrighted by the author, Mark Graban.

    , , , on the author's copyright.

    What do you think? Please scroll down (or click) to post a comment. Or please share the post with your thoughts on LinkedIn – and follow me or connect with me there.

    Did you like this post? Make sure you don't miss a post or podcast — Subscribe to get notified about posts via email daily or weekly.

    Check out my latest book, The Mistakes That Make Us: Cultivating a Culture of Learning and Innovation:

    Get New Posts Sent To You

    Select list(s):
    Previous articleExisting Culture vs. a New Manager
    Next articleLean Does Not Implement Itself
    Mark Graban
    Mark Graban is an internationally-recognized consultant, author, and professional speaker, and podcaster with experience in healthcare, manufacturing, and startups. Mark's new book is The Mistakes That Make Us: Cultivating a Culture of Learning and Innovation. He is also the author of Measures of Success: React Less, Lead Better, Improve More, the Shingo Award-winning books Lean Hospitals and Healthcare Kaizen, and the anthology Practicing Lean. Mark is also a Senior Advisor to the technology company KaiNexus.


    1. How’s this for a simple solution: Attach the file IMMEDIATELY before you write your message, this way you won’t get distracted and forget.

    2. That would work. That’s an example of error proofing through standard work. It works if you’re disciplined enough to do that every time.

      I try to attach the file as soon as I think of it, but still mess up. Evidence that good intentions and being careful aren’t always enough.


    Please enter your comment!
    Please enter your name here

    This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.