To get a better idea of how OneNote functions in a fictional real world situation, let’s take a look at how Joe, a fictional consultant uses OneNote to kick butt every day:
Joe’s day is typically filled with online research, meetings with client teams, and discussions with other members of the project team.
Before using OneNote, Joe would take notes on paper during a meeting and have the extra step of typing them up later to distribute to the other participants. Inevitably, some details from the meeting or tasks assigned to individuals got lost or forgotten during this process.
While researching, Joe took notes on his notepad, but ended up with bookmarks in his browser, printed Web pages placed into a manila folder, and sticky notes attached to various paper documents to highlight the important parts. Finding the desired information at a moment’s notice was difficult at best.
When it came time to preparing a presentation, Joe had to collect all of the information scattered across all these sources, chase down sources and details, and type information that was only in handwritten form.
Now that Joe uses OneNote, let’s look over his shoulder as he goes through a day.
Thursday, 7:00 am
At Joe’s desk.
Joe arrives at work to find several new messages in his e-mail inbox, and several voice mails. One of the messages is from a team member asking Joe to review a PowerPoint presentation. Joe glances at his inbox and his calendar, and realizes that he doesn’t have time to do it now. He opens a side note, jots down his initial thoughts, and adds a note flag to highlight it as an item for follow-up later.
After listening to a lengthy voice mail from the team’s senior manager, Joe opens up another side note. He writes down the key points on two steps in the business process that the senior manager wants Joe to research further.
Joe answers the remaining items in his inbox, and then opens OneNote. On a new page, he creates an agenda for a meeting with the client’s customer service department.
During an on-site client meeting.
As the meeting with Carole Poland, Litware’s customer service manager and Mike Hines, an e-mail support specialist progresses, they cover several agenda topics. Joe is able to effortlessly organize his notes into new pages within various sections of his notebook.
Mike has some extended insights on key points concerning customer-critical services. Rather than write it all down during the meeting, Joe records an audio note to capture what Mike is saying. Moreover, Mike’s comments are synchronized to Joe’s typed information, making it easy to listen to specific sections of the audio recording later.
For each of the questions that deals with shopping cart transactions, Joe adds a custom note flag that marks it as being assigned to the development group, and flags other follow-up items for the Customer Satisfaction group. He then creates a task in Outlook to assign it to Wanida Benshoof, the development manager, and sends it to her via e-mail. This enables Wanida, who is back at the office, to get started on some of the details of the project before Joe even returns.
Sharing notes with the team.
Back at his office, Joe quickly rearranges his meeting notes into more logical groups by dragging and dropping them, and then e-mails them to the meeting participants. He then selects all of the pages of the Potential Improvements section, and saves them to the shared workspace on the Microsoft Windows SharePoint Portal Server. This creates a shared team notebook, where his teammates can continue to add details to the notes as the project progresses.
Doing research with OneNote.
Joe has action items of his own as a result of the meeting. It is his responsibility to find the results of any published studies about user responses to automated voice systems.
He surfs the Internet, searching for relevant information. As he works he keeps a side note open, and drags relevant information from the browser or other applications into the side note. OneNote automatically adds the URL of the Web pages from which he gathered the information.
As he collects research, Joe goes back over the meeting notes. He realizes that a few of the written notes are so abbreviated he doesn’t remember why they are relevant, so he listens to the audio note. Because the recording was synchronized to his typed notes, he quickly jumps to the exact part of the discussion he needs to clarify.
While Joe is working, his senior manager drops by and asks about the credit card approval process he had described to Joe over voicemail. Joe types the words “credit card” into the Find box in OneNote and is able to give the manager a quick summary of his findings without having to fumble through his notebook. Joe’s speedy response impresses the senior manager with his preparedness.
Wrapping things up.
After following up on more e-mails, Joe finds that all of his action items associated with earlier meetings of the day are already complete with the help of OneNote. He can now focus on his PowerPoint presentation for Friday’s status meeting with senior management.
Joe’s notes are already organized, making it easy to construct his slides. Joe extracts key points, drags them into his presentation and copies the charts into PowerPoint. In no time the presentation is ready for the morning meeting.
Before going home, Joe goes over his to do list for the next week, adds a few items to his calendar, and sits back to reflect on the project. He is prepared, ready, and has the time to think about next steps with his client’s project and to follow-up with new project leads.
OneNote provides Joe with all the advantages of traditional note-taking and storage while offering a much more effective and flexible way to manage, prioritize, and share notes. Because OneNote makes it easy to share and collaborate among teams or organizations, everyone has access to the information, supporting more informed decisions and effective knowledge management. OneNote helps busy professionals become more productive, creating more time to develop valuable solutions for their clients.