Evernote has been the dominant app for meeting and note-taking. It has a streamlined interface and interacts with other programs such as Microsoft Outlook. There are competitors to Evernote recognizing that everyone needs a place to track meeting notes, tasks, ideas, recommendations and other pieces of information. Below are some other recommended applications for note-taking.
Google Keep is a simple platform to take notes. Google Keep integrates with a user’s Google platform and notes can sync with Google Drive. Users can make unlimited lists, add photos and graphics to notes and also color code notes. Although the functionality for Google Keep is fairly basic, knowing Google it probably will get enhancements in the coming year.
Microsoft OneNote is part of the Microsoft Office suite and an alternative to Evernote. OneNote was specifically designed as a meeting note application and does a great job of organizing meeting notes by type and date of meeting. The integration with Outlook is also a key feature as it allows users to import emails and tasks between the applications. OneNote has an app and notes can sync to mobile devices. However, attached files such as Word, Excel or email documents may not open depending on your platform. The free version of OneNote is limited to 500 notes, with unlimited use available for $4.99 via an in-app purchase.
Many professionals want to stay on top of trends, research and new products and services for their industry. Often we don’t have time at the moment we receive the email to read every interesting article that comes through. The following are two online reading applications that essentially allow users to tag and save articles and web-pages for later viewing via multiple devices.
Pocket is an online reading app, that lets you tag articles and sites to read at a later. It auto syncs with all mobile devices so that users can tag an article on their computer, go to a meeting, and read it from their tablet or smartphone. This app is free.
Instapaper allows you to save Web pages for reading offline later including posts on Facebook, Twitter or Tumblr. This app also provides the ability to view on mobile devices and will optimize the content for best readability. The app costs $3.99.
When restructuring the shared drive network, it is likely that there will be a considerable number of historical documents that need to be kept and archived. Often, records that are considered permanent, such as financial and personnel records, must be retained by the organization. Other records, such as strategy and business plans, provide history and background to an organization.
Historical data can be identified with the following criteria:
- The data does not need to be accessed again and are solely being retained for historical and archival purposes;
- The data are closed, completed, and finished, such as with projects and initiatives that do not have to be accessible;
- The data relates to old businesses, sold assets, and dissolved entities or departments that do not need to be accessible but may be required for historical purposes; and/ or
- Former employee work files (not their personnel file) that have been reviewed do not have to be accessible any longer but are still important to keep if future access is needed.
Be cautious moving historical data onto external hard drives. Although external hard drives are plug and play devices, once data is moved to an external hard drive it becomes forgotten and less accessible to staff. The following are ways to manage historical files on a Shared Drive network. These options should be discussed with IT and management before implementing an option.
- Integrate into the file structure: Within the file structure, data can be organized chronologically to archive historical data, as shown in the screenshot below.
- Create a “historical” file folder: A folder labeled Historical or Archive can be created in the first line of file folders. Within this folder a mirror image of the first line of folders (i.e., divisions of an organization) can be made. When documents become outdated for each division, they can be moved into the same topical folder in the historical folder. Or sub-files can be designed by year. As files and documents become outdated they can be moved into the appropriate historical year folder.
- Archive them on a separate drive: Another option to manage historical data is to create a separate drive allocated on the server solely for archived and historical information. The structure can be designed in one of the options recommended above. Keeping the archived data on the server enables the data to be accessible quickly. It also will update files and documents automatically as software and operating systems are upgraded. Another option is to store historical and archive data on an external hard drive.
To learn how to organize electronic files on the shared drive, download the report How to Organize Electronic Documents on Shared Drive Networks. Or you are welcome to contact us and we can assist you.
It is important to track various versions of documents when there have been significant and substantial changes in the context, format, or edit of a document. Usually version numbers are used to denote various versions of documents. A small “v” should be used with a sequential number following. Example: Document Naming Guidelines_v1. When creating multiple versions, make sure to use the same document name and title for all versions. A significant date can be added to the document name before the version number and/or if relevant to the new version.
It can also be helpful if there are multiple reviewers to add the initials or team name after the version number of the person who conducted those revisions. For a person’s name, use the first name initial and last name.
When multiple versions of a particular document have been finalized the word “FINAL” in capital letters is recommended to be used at the end of the document name. This is helpful to quickly identify the final version of all the prior versions. If there is another version after the “final” has been released, then the previous final should be renamed to the next version number and the new final version should be renamed “FINAL.”
To learn more how to organize computer documents, download the free report How to Organize Your Computer Documents.