In addition to creating new work items, TMO can also find existing work items in TFS or Azure DevOPS. You can use these existing work items with Outlook emails, calendar appointments or tasks. Launch the existing work item finder tool of TMO by clicking the “New or Find menu” button in the TMO toolbar . You can also do this by right clicking an Outlook item and selecting the option “Find existing work item” as shown in the images below
Find Existing workitem button in Ribbon
Find Existing workitem menu option in Context Menu
Right click any email, task or calendar item to bring up the context menu as shown.
Clicking either of these will launch the TMO Find Existing workitem window as shown below. This window will let you search for an existing workitem either by work item id or by using one of the saved queries from your Team Services Project.
You can use the workitem id to find an existing workitem.
Finding workitem using workitem id
Select the team project that you want to use from the team project picker dialogue, then type the workitem id and click Find. This will show the workitem in the list. Select the workitem and click OK.
Finding workitem using a saved query.
To find a workitem using a saved query, select the Team Project but this time select the radio box titled “Saved Query”. Use the drop down to select a saved query and click “Find”. This will populate a list of all the work items as returned by that query. Select the work item you would like to use and click OK.
Once you click OK, the normal TMO control will load in Outlook and you can use the existing workitem.
Quickly Reusing the last used workitem.
One of the lesser known features of TMO is it’s ability to quickly let you use the last few workitems you either created or reused with TMO. For e.g. if you just used a workitem id 311 with an Outlook email, you do not have to repeat all the above steps to use it with another email. Simply click the New Workitem menu and go to “Suggested workitems” menu option. This will list all the workitems you have recently used. It also shows workitems which are linked to your Outlook conversation.
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