Tag: OneNote for business

OneNote to Grow Your Business in 2018

Published / by PracticalSandy / Leave a Comment

OneNote is a tool.  One of many tools available, in this age of technology, that can help your business grow by improving processes, increasing productivity,  motivating employees and enhancing communication.  We’ll take a look at each of these areas during the next four weeks to help you focus on the main business objective for 2018 – growth.

Improving Processes

I strongly believe that processes and procedures, used to make redundant tasks routine, can increase efficiency, thereby reducing waste in company resources.

Every business handles a multitude of processes every day, from opening mail to shipping products.  Let’s assume your company has 30 daily processes.  If you could save just 2 minutes per process, you would gain 60 minutes of time that could be used to improve other processes or increase revenue through extra sales and marketing efforts.  Saving 10 minutes per process would give you an extra 5 hours per day!  That’s an unheard of 25 hours per week!  Or perhaps you don’t have an adequate quality control process and your customers are complaining?  Think processes are important?

So, how can OneNote help us improve processes?  By defining, documenting and sharing them in one easy-to-use location using these steps:

  1. Create a notebook called Company Processes
  2. Call the first section “All Processes”
  3. In that section, write down all the processes you can think of that your company performs each day (don’t get caught up in the details of those processes yet – just list the processes themselves).
  4. Create a new section in the Company Processes notebook for each of the processes you listed above.
  5. For each process, write down all the steps for handling the process (procedure).  Don’t try to change the steps, just write down the steps that are currently taken.  Be detailed.  The more detailed your steps, the more improvements can generally be made.  If someone else in the company handles that process, share the notebook with them and have them fill out the steps.  Sometimes a flow chart helps to outline each step.
  6. Once the steps have been written down, analyze each step and brainstorm solutions and improvements with others involved in the process.  Even if you are a one-person show, engage the help of someone you know to talk through the procedure.  Are there bottlenecks in the procedure?  Is everyone actually performing the steps?  Can a step be automated?
  7. Make sure the final procedure is written down on a new page under that process section.
  8. Implement and share the new procedure (can email pages or sections directly from OneNote or share the entire notebook).

Here are some examples of common processes:

  • Retrieve, Open and Handle Mail
  • Retrieve, Open and Handle Email
  • Invoice Customers
  • Ship Orders to Customers
  • Customer Relations
  • Employee Training
  • Purchasing
  • Pay Bills
  • Receive Payments
  • Inventory Management
  • Payroll
  • Social Media Marketing
  • Website Maintenance
  • Sales Calls
  • Quality Control
  • New Product Development

I usually encourage my clients to start with the mail.  It’s a simple but important process and is a good place to start honing the art of process development.  Many times, surprising deficiencies are discovered by reviewing this mundane procedure.

Here is an example of a mail handling workflow and process discussion.


Only one process should be accomplished at one time.   Multi-tasking typically does not improve efficiency or save time.  If a procedure can’t be completed,  schedule it for another time and go on to the next task.

Engage employees and customers – get them involved in reviewing the current process and testing out the new one.  This in itself can improve relations and processes.

Any time something is handled multiple times (like a piece of mail or passing the task to another person), there’s a good chance steps can be eliminated.

Many times, training is the missing ingredient in a procedure.  The process itself might be efficient, but the person responsible for completing the task may not have the necessary training to perform it well.

Remember to utilize OneNote features such as Numbering, To Do Tags, Links, File Attachments and Styles to help create standard procedures within your processes.  OneNote can be used directly to complete and record each step.


Most processes are fluid and need to be updated yearly.  Keeping them organized in your Company Processes notebook ensures that they will be reviewed in future.

For additional information on using OneNote for processes, watch The Ultimate OneNote Organizer.

First Ever Global OneNote Conference

Published / by PracticalSandy / Leave a Comment

Microsoft OneNote is a software application that offers much more than note-taking capabilities.

OneNote can help you organize and get control of your business.  Everything your company and your team needs can be kept in OneNote, always at your fingertips.

Hundreds of teachers use OneNote in their classrooms for interactive learning, lesson planning, class assignments, and student involvement.

It doesn’t stop there.  OneNote can be utilized for every aspect of your personal life too. From holiday planning to medical records, OneNote is the most time-saving productivity tool available anywhere.

If you’re new and  want to learn how to use the features of OneNote or are a OneNote guru that wants to go deeper and learn about new applications for OneNote, you don’t want to miss the Learn OneNote Conference (<-mouse over for link).

Join myself (Sandy Morgan) and over 20 other speakers from around the world for this amazing, one of a kind, global OneNote conference.



Topics include:

  • Introduction to OneNote
  • Get Familiar with OneNote
  • OneNote Resources & Recommendations
  • Powerful OneNote Features
  • Viewing Options and Workflow
  • Live Objects within OneNote
  • Ultimate Productivity with OneNote, Tablet, and Stylus
  • Journaling and Weekly Planning with OneNote
  • Documentary of How to Use OneNote in Everyday Life
  • OneNote with Office Lens and Camscanner
  • Client and Prospect Management with OneNote
  • Replace the 3-Ring Binder – File Management
  • OneNote with Outlook and SharePoint
  • Intro to OneNote Class Notebook
  • From Humble Beginnings, OneNote Can Do it All
  • How Teachers Can Use OneNote Class Notebooks
  • Lesson Planning with OneNote
  • Hacking OneNote
  • Effective Student Feedback with OneNote
  • Teaching Math with OneNote
  • The Future of OneNote in Education

Jared DeCamp, a OneNote fan, is the founder and host of the Learn OneNote Conference which runs from November 12 -17, 2016.

The conference will be hosted online and attendees have free access to watch some or all of the video topics during the conference dates.  Optional Lifetime Access passes will be offered after the conference.

Don’t miss this opportunity to organize your life – one page at a time!


Keyboard Shortcuts for your OneNote Tags

Published / by PracticalSandy / Leave a Comment

One of the best features in Microsoft OneNote is Tags. Tags are searchable symbols you put next to items in OneNote (words or images).  They are used to identify and categorize information within OneNote, making it easier to locate and prioritize your notes.

OneNote comes with a large variety of pre-defined tags, but you can also create your own.

Apply a Tag

To apply a tag, place the cursor at the beginning of a word, line of text, or picture that you want to tag. Click on the Home tab, and go to the Tags section. Click on the down arrow to expand the Tag list. Select the tag icon you want to apply.


To get rid of the tag, place the cursor in front of the text that has the tag, and click on the same tag again.  For check boxes, you will have to click twice on it, since clicking on it once puts a check mark in the box.  You can also place your cursor in front of the text with the tag, and hit your Back Space key on your keyboard.

Keyboard Shortcuts for Tags

CTRL+1 will apply or clear the tag in the first position (usually the To-Do tag)

CTRL+2 will apply or clear the tag in the second position

CTRL+3 through CTRL+9 will apply or clear the tag in the matching numeric position

CTRL + 0 removes all tags from selection

Tag shortcuts


Create a Custom Tag

To create your own custom tag,  click on the drop-down arrow in the Tag section to expand the Tag list. Click on Customize Tags near the bottom of the list.  Click on New Tag.

Customize tags

New Tag














Enter a name for your tag (type over Undefined).   You can then select a Symbol, a Font Color, and a Highlight Color from the drop down menus.

The font and highlight color will be applied to the selected text, along with adding the tag.  For example, in the following text, I applied my custom “Newsletter or Blog Item” tag, and it highlighted my selection with yellow as I had indicated in my custom tag.

Applied tag


You can also modify an existing tag using the Modify Tag button on the same drop-down.

Now that you have created and applied some tags, you’ll want to Search for them in your OneNote notebooks.

Search for Tags

You can search for tags in pages, sections and notebooks.  You can also group your tag search.

To start, click on  Find Tags in the Tags section on the Home Tab ribbon.  A window will appear on the right side of your notebook.

From here you can select how your want to group the tag results, and where you want OneNote to search for your tags.

Tag search
















So, to search for all my Newsletter or Blog Item tags, I would group by Tag Name, and search this notebook.   The results will include ALL tags, but you can click on the tiny up arrow to collapse the ones you don’t need to see.

Tag search results











OneNote tags can help you sort and organize your OneNote notebooks.  Keyboard shortcuts to apply and remove the tags will save you time.