Can I dictate my content in Microsoft Word, PowerPoint and Outlook? 

Do you find that you are spending ages typing information into your documents?  Wish you could just dictate the information instead?  Well you can!! 

If you are using Office 2016, Office 2019 or Microsoft 365 this feature is available to be used and can be much quicker than typing.  Although the conversion to text is not 100% accurate it is still likely to be quicker to modify what has been created than start from scratch. 

Where is dictation available? 

Although you might think of this being an option specific to Microsoft Word it is also available in PowerPoint and when creating an email in Outlook.  The option is not however able to be used in Excel.

How to use dictate

Dictate is available on the Home tab.  The drop down gives the option of choosing a language.  Clicking on the main part of the icon starts dictation and the icon changes from blue to white with a red recording symbol.

Dictate Icon in Word, Powerpoint & Outlook

When dictation is completed the same icon is clicked on to stop. 

Dictate Off Icon in Word, Powerpoint & Outlook

How to add punctuation

Punctuation can even be added as you dictate.  Any of the following can be spoken to add them to the document. 

  • Full stop 
  • Comma 
  • Question mark 
  • Exclamation mark 
  • New line 
  • New paragraph 
  • Semicolon 
  • Colon
  • Open quote 
  • Close quote 
  • Open quotes 
  • Close quotes 

Correcting mistakes

If a mistake is made while dictating there is no need to turn off the microphone to correct it.  Just move the cursor to where the mistake has been made and sort out the error using the keyboard. 

Dictation helps me to convert hand written notes I have taken in meetings quickly into an electronic version.  It even enables my blogs, like the one you are currently reading, to be produced more swiftly and emails can be written in a fraction of the time.  How are you going to put dictation into use? 

Further Reading

If you’ve enjoyed reading about how to use the Dictate function on Word, Powerpoint and Outlook, there’s some other blogs below that you might find useful:

Want to learn more about other Microsoft features? Then email to discuss how I can help or have a look at the Courses I run.