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Tip of the Week: Is OneNote, or Evernote, Right for Your Business?

Tip of the Week: Is OneNote, or Evernote, Right for Your Business?

When taking notes that relate to a business’ operations, these notes need to meet certain standards of clarity, cohesiveness, and comprehension. To accomplish this, you will need the right tools at your disposal. Today’s tip will evaluate two of the industry’s best note-taking applications to help you identify which is best for your needs. The applications: Microsoft OneNote, and EverNote.

This application is available on multiple platforms, allowing its user to access a mostly comprehensive set of note-taking tools and features. While it naturally offers the traditional text-based note format, some platforms also permit a user to add quick drawings, incorporate recorded audio and video, and paste images and spreadsheets into their notes. OneNote also allows notes to be shared between users.

OneNote keeps a user’s notes organized in a simple hierarchy, with each notebook they create being divisible into sections, subsections, and individual pages. Creating notes will be simple for anyone familiar with Microsoft Office applications, as OneNote’s functions and tools are organized in the same tab setup that the other Office applications utilize. Using the Windows version of OneNote offers the most features within this setup, with fewer features offered in its versions for Apple products, its web version, and Android applications.

However, OneNote’s Achilles heel in this comparison is definitely its web clipping functionality--or its lack thereof. If a user clips content from a webpage and adds it to OneNote, it is only added as an image. This has two ill effects on the comprehensiveness of the application. First, any video content or links are rendered unusable, and second, a user is unable to copy and paste content from the clipping. Furthermore, only users with a Microsoft account are able to use the web-clipping function.

In order to synchronize itself across all of a user’s devices where it is installed, OneNote leans on OneDrive. Your version of Office will have an impact on how much storage space you have on OneDrive. If you should find that you need more storage, there are plans available that enable you to access more, for an additional fee.

While the basic functions are effectively the same as OneNote’s, Evernote has strengths in different enough areas that comparing the two isn’t exactly a one-to-one consideration. Most notably, while Evernote offers similar note-creation capabilities as OneNote, it has its strengths in how well it can be used to clip web content.

Through the use of a toolbar application, Evernote permits a user to pull content from the web in a variety of ways. In addition to taking a simple screenshot of a page, Evernote can pull a single article, removing ads, extra content, or even the original formatting. A user can also use Evernote to grab the entire web page, ads and all, along with a working bookmark that directs to that page.

You can tag content you capture with the clipper, and edit it by adding text, highlighting certain elements, drawing notes and arrows, and various other functions. The only portions of a captured page that you can’t edit are elements like videos, but these act like links to the original page that the content was pulled from.

Evernote proves to be set up much differently between Windows and Apple versions. As a result, the application is a little harder to navigate around on Apple devices than it is on Windows. Both mobile versions, as well as the web, allow the user to save a particular note in a special favorites menu for speedy access.

There is a free version of Evernote, albeit a limited one. The application is also offered through various subscription models.

Option 3: Both!
Comparing OneNote to Evernote serves to show that where one is weak, the other has its strengths. Therefore, each application may be a better choice than the other, when you consider your needs on a case-by-case basis. It may suit your needs better to utilize both, perhaps only investing in the paid version of one and leveraging the free version of the other. For instance, Evernote may be used to organize and categorize research for an upcoming project, while OneNote could be used to assemble those notes into a project map with notes detailing specific considerations.

Whichever application you elect to use, you will want to make sure that employees aren’t using their personal accounts to store private company data. While both applications are relatively secure ones, it is better to be safe than sorry. Each application also has a business/enterprise version to help you retain control over your company data.

Whether you choose to utilize OneNote, Evernote, or both, Shartega Systems can offer you some assistance. Give us a call at 773-635-5100 for more information.

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