When employees leave, suspending or deleting their G-Suite account will also remove the email address so received emails could be lost.
You may want to keep an active email inbox of past employees for several reasons:
- Customer, prospects and vendors may keep sending emails to this address
- You retain the ability to restore passwords to business accounts which only that specific employee had access to
To create email forwarding in G-Suite, you must keep paying for that account.
The following guide shows how to use G-Suite groups to keep email forwarding without keeping the original user account.
Step 1 - Change the Employee Email Address
- Go to your G-Suite Google Admin console (admin.google.com)
- Find the user you’re off-boarding and whose emails you’d like to keep forwarding.
In this example we’ll use the employee named Tony Stark with the email address firstname.lastname@example.org
- Change the employee email to the original email plus a prefix like _past_
For example, if the employee email address is email@example.com then the new email address should be firstname.lastname@example.org
- When changing an email address, G-Suite automatically creates an alias with the original address.
Delete the original email alias email@example.com
Step 2 - Create a Group to Catch All Emails Sent to the Original Employee Address
- In your Google Admin console, navigate to Groups
- Create a new group with a name that you can associate with the employee.
For example Tony Stark Email FWD Group
- Set the Group Email to the original email of the employee leaving: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Enable External with the Publish posts access.
This is important as you want to receive emails sent from an employee outside your organization
Step 3 - Add Relevant Email Forward Recipients
Once the group is created, add the relevant email addresses of the people who should receive the emails sent to the original employee who has left.
In many cases that would be the manager of the employee or someone from the IT department.
Step 4 - Remove the Old Email Account
You can now suspend or delete the old email account email@example.com
Emails sent to firstname.lastname@example.org will be sent to the newly created email group. A member of the group will receive the email.
- Keep constant naming conventions. For example:
Email prefix for past employees: _past_
Group names: <Employee Name> Email FWD Group
- Don't reuse old email address for new employees.