Mastering OneNote: Keep All Your Ideas in One Place

Mastering OneNote: Keep All Your Ideas in One Place

It’s not unusual to get a suite of apps with an operating system or a platform like Office 365 and to leave some of them unused simply because you’re not sure what to do with them.

We see this happen often when providing Office 365 support to clients. We show them how unused tools that come free with the platform can improve productivity, automated processes, and reduce costs.

One Office 365 application that tends to go underutilised but offers powerful organisation and time-savings benefits is OneNote.

OneNote is a digital notebook where you can store all your ideas in a dynamic way. Its integration with multiple platforms, in addition to Office 365, gives you the power to organise data from a wide variety of places, including everything from emails to web pages to Excel spreadsheets.

If you’ve ever wanted to find a better way to keep information organised and reduce time spent searching, read on to learn how to master a program you may already own with Office 365.

Using OneNote Like a Pro to Improve Your Efficiency

Have you ever been working on a project and had to compile hand-written notes, links to pertinent webpages, emails from stakeholders, and other bits and pieces of data from various places? It can be incredibly time-consuming and it’s easy to miss items.

Lack of organisational skills and/or tools cause workers to waste approximately 40% of their workday.

Just the act of staying organised and being able to access information you’re working with from a variety of places can make a huge difference in your task efficiency.

OneNote is about keeping all your ideas in a single place so you can quickly reference them, expand upon then, and use them in a number of ways. Here are pro tips for using OneNote to its fullest.

Scribble in OneNote Instead of a Napkin

Often ideas come in a burst of creativity and people may grab a napkin or sticky note that’s nearby to sketch out those ideas before they’re lost. Using OneNote on your smartphone or tablet can give you a better way to capture those inspirational scribbles.

You can use a stylus or your finger right on any touch screen to jot notes down inside OneNote, where they’re saved and easy to add onto later using the app’s editing tools.

Collate Data from a Wide Variety of Sources

A big challenge when working on a variety of projects is keeping information from different sources together. For example, you may be working on a new marketing presentation and have a PowerPoint file, Excel file, webpage links, emails, or photos that you want to incorporate… and the list goes on.

Trying to keep all those different data sources in a folder can be challenging because they’re coming from different online and offline formats.

OneNote allows you to collate data from multiple places. Here are just a few of them:

  • Webpage links
  • Images
  • Emails
  • Screenshots
  • Office documents
  • AutoCad
  • Scanners
  • RSS feeds
  • Audio notes

Keep Project Data Organised in Notebooks

You can create multiple notebooks in OneNote to keep your ideas separated according to project. Instead of just having everything coming into one place in OneNote, you can make sure that the link you found for your HR project is going to a different notebook than the photo you found for your sales presentation. So, when you open them everything is where you can find it easily.

Use OneNote to Record Audio or Videos

OneNote can completely streamline the way you take meeting notes. Instead of having to type while you’re also trying to actively participate in a meeting, simply use the recorder in the OneNote app. It allows you to record either audio or video, so you don’t miss anything important and can be free to be completely present in the moment.

Add Emails to OneNote from Outlook

Do you have those emails with ideas you want to save that end up clogging up your Outlook inbox? You can easily add them to a OneNote notebook by highlighting the message and, on the Home ribbon, click the OneNote icon. Not only will it reduce email clutter, it makes the information easier to find later.

Share Information Easily

OneNote streamlines the sharing process with colleagues working on a project together. You can quickly share a notebook with others either through an email invitation or a sharing link, which superpowers collaboration.

OneNote even allows you to password protect notebooks so just those people you’ve shared the password with can open one.

Pull Text from a Photo

Did you see a great inspirational quote on an image and want to use that text elsewhere? No need to retype it. OneNote has OCR capability which allows it to read text from images. You can pull in an image and choose “Copy Text from Picture” by right-clicking on it to have OneNote grab the text.

Keep Digital Sticky Notes

Are you a sticky note devotee that has them all over your desk or computer? OneNote can help you keep them digitally instead, which gives you the ability to search them and organise them by subject. They’re also synced across multiple devices, including smartphones – which didn’t used to be the case until Microsoft put them inside OneNote.

Keep Notebooks Looking Great with Templates

OneNote has templates, just like other Office 365 programs, and they allow you to instantly give your notebook an appealing background, consistent layout and organisational attributes.

Tip: They can be applied to new pages only, so apply your template first before adding notes.

Learn How to Unleash the Full Power of Office 365

Are you getting your full money’s worth from your Office 365 subscription? GKM2 can show you ways to fully employ Office 365 to do more, save time, and increase productivity across your organisation.

Contact us today to learn what our Office 365 solutions can do for you. Call +61 2 9161 7171 or request a quote online.