The COVID-19 pandemic has changed school organizational culture and practices. Suddenly, personal interactions and meetings were replaced with video conference calls. We might never return to the way we worked before the pandemic, and maybe we shouldn’t. Rather than trying to replace what we perceived as a loss, school marketers should consider looking embracing and enhancing the new norms.
One of the big changes to organizational procedure is the virtual meeting. Love them or hate them, it seems clear that virtual meetings are here to stay. Long advocated by busy school marketers as time-saving and cost-effective, web-based meetings have now become everyday occurrences. To some, they are a blessing – no more pointless, mind-numbing, low-productivity committee meetings – while others feel the richness of in-person communication is lost. Alas, Zoom fatigue is real and distractions are inevitable.
Meeting note-taking apps are advantageous when it comes to virtual meetings. Most of them will:
- Send out an agenda before the meeting to ensure everyone is on the same page
- Take accurate notes during the meeting and record all items discussed
- Log next steps and assign them to the appropriate team or staff member
Recording your next steps and assigning them to the right person is immensely impactful and can significantly increase team productivity. This also prevents follow-up meetings where people are confused and no one knows what they were responsible for. With accurate note-taking and next steps, everyone will leave the meeting feeling confident in the game plan.
When it comes to digital note-taking apps, finding the right one for your team is critical. Here are my favorite note-taking apps on the market.
I love Evernote as an organization tool, but it is a popular note-taking app as well. Evernote is great for keeping all meeting notes and documents in one central place. Evernote allows you to store all your notes in one place and sync between devices. You can also capture screenshots and photos to save with your notes and add checklists for next steps.
Evernote is a powerful note-taking app that can handle notes in almost any format you want. You can add:
- Text notes
- Audio clips
- PDF documents
- Scanned hand-written pages
- Slack conversations
- Anything else digital you can think of
But Evernote is more than a storage place for notes and attachments, it’s designed so you can easily sort and organize your notes. You can add Tags to make it easy to sort and find your notes. If you already have Tags set up, they’ll be auto-suggested. If not, you can add whatever you want or click Tags in the sidebar for a searchable list of all Tags you’ve used before. This is an easy way to sort notes and find what you need in the future.
Microsoft’s OneNote is a great note-taking app if you want to stick with a Microsoft product. OneNote offers a large note-pad you can write in, add images to and divide into sections and pages. It’s very convenient if you use other Microsoft tools, such as Excel or Word, because you can plug other documents into the note itself.
Other built-in functions include:
- List creation
- Notes revision with type, highlight and ink annotations
- Share ideas and collaborate with other users
Notion is built for collaboration. Most note-taking apps are mostly for taking notes for yourself. Sure, they allow you to share with others, but their main features are not designed as a collaboration tool.
Notion is primarily a collaboration tool that includes note-taking, which is why it’s on this list. But it’s also a powerful task and project manager, as well as a reference wiki. Notion is a great tool for teams if you’re looking for one tool that excels at project management and note-taking.
Hugo is an app designed to help improve meeting productivity, by keeping all your notes in a centralized place. It has over twenty integrations, including calendars, project management tools, CRM, Slack, and many other tools.
You can set reminders to alert you to upcoming meetings so you never forget to set an agenda or attend. Hugo has built-in one-click templates and can take in meeting notes. Hugo offers many advanced capabilities.
Simplenote is exactly what it claims – straightforward and simple to use. It allows you to sync your notes across various devices, and you can view past changes. You can also share your notes with other team members.
Fellow is an app designed to manage meetings and increase productivity. You can create notes, design meeting templates, build meeting agendas, record meeting notes, assign meeting action items, organize ideas and exchange peer feedback.
Google Keep is Google’s note-taking app. It allows you to take notes, store and share notes from any of your devices. Google Keep is a simple note-taking solution that doesn’t come with a lot of bells and whistles, but it’s a convenient and easy to use platform, especially if you’re already familiar with Google’s other tools. You can give your notes color-coded labels to make it easy to stay organized.
Dropbox Paper is a cloud platform with a focus on collaboration, allowing teams to share ideas, images and videos. It allows you to create documents within projects, track assignments, milestones and deadlines. It gives you the ability to incorporate images, audio and videos and has a mobile interface. Dropbox Paper is free with any type of Dropbox account.
The best place to start when researching the right note-taking app for you and your team is to determine what you need. Once you know what you need, you can take your budget into consideration. These two factors will go a long way toward helping you figure out which app is right for you. One thing is for sure – investing in a good note-taking app is certainly worth your time and money.
Is there a note-taking app that should be included in this list? Please leave your suggestion in the comments below.