Share contacts Outlook – How To

Share Contacts Outlook

How and in which depth you can share Contacts in Outlook can be confusing sometimes. We often get asked if it would be possible to share Contacts with certain people and manage them centrally ?

Well , we do not offer public folders based on the shared character of the environment. For customers without Sharepoint , managing and sharing contacts via Sharepoint isn’t an option as well. The only thing what’s left is the classical way via Outlook.

You can create a mailbox before with the only purpose to share contacts out of it.

Ok , let’s get straight to it :

If you want to share certain contacts with certain people , create a new contact folder and fill it with contacts you want to share with e.g. colleague 1 and colleague 2.

Navigate to People in the bottom bar :

Share contacts Outlook - How To

Click your default Contact Folder and create a new folder :

Share contacts Outlook - How To

Right click the just created Contacts folder and choose Share > Share Contacts

Share contacts Outlook - How To

Add the recipients you want to share Contacts with ( e.g. colleague 1 and colleague 2 ). If you tick in Recipient can add, edit and delete items in this contact folder you will grant Editor permissions to the recipients. In this example we want the recipients to be able to edit those shared Contacts. Click Send when you are done :

Share contacts Outlook - How To

You will be prompted for confirmation. The persons you have chosen to share contacts with will be displayed with the granted permissions. In this case Editor, since we have checked this option before.


On recipients side open the just received Sharing invitation mail and open the Contacts folder out of the mail :

Share contacts Outlook - How To

The shared Contacts folder will be added to your Contacts :

Share contacts Outlook - How To

The recipients will be able to add – modify – delete contacts in the shared Contacts folder, since we have granted them Editor permissions.


A more convenient way to share Contacts directly through the permissions tab of the source Contacts folder could have been useful , but this way has its limitations though.
It appears you can just share your default Contacts folder. No sub folders can be shared, which is useful to share different contact folders with certain people. When this fits you your needs choose this way :

Grant the appropriate permissions on you default Contacts folder :

Share contacts Outlook - How To

This will not trigger a sharing invitation mail but in the end we need the permissions, not the mail.

Conclusion :

Add new people you want to share dedicated Contact folders with ( sub folders of your main Contacts ) by sending a sharing invitation mail. Grant Editor permissions within the mail ( if you want your recipients to be able to add – modify and delete contact entries. )

Modify or remove permissions via properties and the permissions tab of your Shared Contacts folder.



It is not possible to use the shared Contacts from the address book by design.

Good Bye from client side today 🙂


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