I am a big fan of going paperless. I think that there are two things that we can do away with in this world, checks and printers. We are beyond that now. Majority of individuals have smartphones or tablets and can sign any document electronically. Documents can be saved and shared through email, slack, project management software, cloud servers such as Dropbox or through note managers like Evernote. I love doing so much on my iPhone, computer and iPad. Evernote has become a daily tool that I use to manage my life. I even wrote this post initially in Evernote.
I am a big fan of Evernote. Evernote allows me to use notebooks, notebook stacks, optical character recognition in search, cloud storage, document management and so much more. I am going to cover some of my favorite features below. I find myself clicking on that elephant nearly every day of my life and here is why you should too.
I know that my content is protected in Evernote. Evernote has now added passcode protection for my mobile devices. I can set it up so that I must login every time I access Evernote on these devices. On my iPhone and iPad I can use the fingerprint scanner to bypass the security code. I know that my notes are safe and secure with this feature. Also, Evernote has taken every measure to keep your notes, emails and documents safe. They employ every security measure possible to keep your stuff from being lost, stolen or hijacked.
(passcode requires a Plus or greater membership)
I love organization. I really enjoy keeping everything neatly filed and organized. This allows me to find things rapidly when I need them. Evernote allows me to create an unlimited amount of notebooks to store my content. I can then organize notebooks into stacks if they are similar. I have a work stack that includes notebooks for meetings, marketing strategy, ambassadors and more. These layers of organization give structure and order to my content. If I want to look at the current articles I am writing then I head to my article folder and then I can sort through those to spend time on the one that I have ideas for at that time. Again, great organization for productivity and simplicity.
Evernote Web Clipper
This has become one of my favorite features lately. When I am reading a good blog post, recipe or other online content that I want to have at my fingertips for later then I use the Web Clipper to cleanly clip it into Evernote for future reference. I find myself clipping content all of the time. I can specify tags, notebook and how much of the page I want to clip. I have now stopped using my read later. I can put any article that I want to read in a “read later” notebook and then I set that notebook for offline viewing so that I can read on the bus or during my lunch break. This is a really handy feature that Evernote has added. You can download the Web Clipper for your browser. Available for Chrome, Safari, Internet Explorer (IE) 7+, Firefox, and Opera.
Are you tired of trying to find that important email amongst the mess that is your email inbox? I have started forwarding key emails to Evernote that I want to save and then deleting them from my email server. This allows me to have them handy and easy to find when I search Evernote. I have saved my Evernote email as a contact so it is really easy to forward these on. I also bcc my Evernote email on important emails that I send to a co-worker or business associate. It is an automatic email backup for me.
(this requires a Plus or greater membership)
Cross Device Sync
Evernote is available for iOS, Mac OS, Android, Windows, Chromebook and an available web interface. It also syncs with the cloud so that you can have all of your notes available on any of those devices. I love having access to my notes no matter where I am. Since I use Evernote every day I like to have access to all of my notes whether I am on my computer, iPhone, iPad or accessing something through the web from someone else’s computer. Knowing that all of these notes are safely tucked away in the cloud where I can access whenever and wherever I need is a great feeling.
Business Card Scanning
Are you tired of having that stack of business cards on your desk? Still using your grandpa’s rolodex? Is your junk drawer doubling in size after every conference or trade show? Why not eliminate all those business cards and put them in a place where you can access them at will and also sync them to your contacts and LinkedIn profile? Well, with Evernote you can do that. Most of the time now when I meet someone new I will take their business card, scan it into Evernote, then right then and there I can choose to connect to them on LinkedIn, save them as a contact and also send them my contact info. I then am able to hand them back their business card to give to someone else. Reduce business card junk with this amazing feature! I never have business cards lying around anymore.
(this requires a Premium membership)
Again, I am working to go paperless. I really don’t like the documents that float around my house or office. It seems that I can never find it when I need to reference it. Now with Evernote’s document scanner (can be done right in Evernote or in their Scannable app) I can use my iPhone or iPad (also can use their ScanSnap scanner) to snap a picture of the document and save it into a note within Evernote. Now, insurance documents, tax documents or anything else that was once paper can be scanned, saved and recycled. This feature has helped me get closer to living a paperless life.
Other Evernote Features
Other great features that I enjoy are as follows:
– The ability to save documents and search them with character recognition (this requires a Plus or greater membership)
– Shortcuts to keep my favorite notes or notebooks handy in the sidebar
– Tags to quickly find similarly themed notes and documents
– Recent Notes – I can easily open up notes that I am currently working on
– Offline notes – Evernote stores all of your content in the cloud. This helps to keep space free on your devices, but if you are not where you are going to have online access such as on the road or on the plane then you can specify notes to have available for offline access. (this requires a Plus or greater membership)
– PDF Annotation – Need to mark up that PDF for an upcoming client meeting or presentation? Want to mark it up for your records? Well, you can do that right in Evernote and keep the copy there for future reference. (this requires a Premium membership)
– Priority lists – Know what you need to get down. You can also add reminders to notes
There are so many wonderful features in Evernote. The above are just some of the ones that I use. There are also some features that I don’t use much, but should start using. These are as follows
– Dictation – the ability to dictate audio right to notes. If I had an Apple Watch I would for sure use this
– Chat – I have not gotten my team fully integrated into Evernote yet, but the ability to use slack like conversations and share documents across a team can really help productivity.
– Postit notes – I am not a big post-it note guy, but I can see some of you that use them finding this as a great tool. When scanning it recognizes them by color and groups them appropriately. MAGIC!
– Evernote Web – This is new, but Evernote now has a beautiful web interface
Evernote has a plethora of options and features that make it one of the best applications that you can ever use. In the business place Evernote business brings in a new element of productivity and organization across the workplace.
I hope that this encourages you to checkout Evernote and find it as useful as I have. I have really found a love of this app and use it to keep documents, organize files, write notes and plan out nearly everything in my life. Enjoy!