I’m a huge fan of Evernote, and am surprised by how many people either don’t use it, or don’t understand how valuable it is for small business owners, or busy people in general.
I think it’s so important that it’s worth several blogs. This, the first will be an overview. I will be expanding the series to include Evernote Hello for networking & contact management, Filing Systems to find everything in Evernote, Evernote Web Clipper – how to set it up and bookmark anything on the web.
What do you do with your web bookmarks, recipes, receipts, shopping lists, back-of-a-napkin-ideas, postcards, kids paintings, blog ideas and to do lists?
You might have a filing cabinet full of brochures, boxes of kids art, random folders of recipes.
We all collect these things, we love filing stuff away for when we might need it. But the chances are that once filed, it may never see the light of day again.
Worse still, you might file it, and never be able to find it again. Was it in that shoebox in the wardrobe? Is it in the ‘miscellaneous’ file?
Evernote, is a simple and free online filing cabinet. IT comes with smart software that allows you to search text, including hand writing. Plus, it can be accessed on all your devices, via the cloud.
Filing your stuff and finding it fast, has never been easier.
Let’s take a look at a couple of examples…
If you have kids, you’ll understand the quandary of a growing pile of juvenile artwork. I have a filing cabinet drawer which long ago outgrew any upright files and now threatens to make a break should you open the drawer.
I love my kids dearly, and I’m not about to unleash my inner art critic on their Kindy hand prints, marble paintings and hand made Mother’s Day cards.
Even when my office is in danger of an artwork avalanche.
So I enrolled them in the task of photographing and documenting their favourite pieces. It’s easy, they stand against the wall like a juvenile art thief holding their Mona Lisa, I snap and add to Evernote. Add a couple of notes such as “Kid’s Name, Kindergarten 2013. Daddy running after butterflies.” and you’re done.
My six year old son certainly loves being able to search for his artwork on Evernote, whereas he’s never once expressed an interest in hunting through that filing cabinet drawer.
Whilst there are many systems out there for converting your entire bookkeeping practice to Evernote, I use the ‘document camera’ for filing receipts when I am out and about.
Add the amount, provider and note in the title, file in ‘Unprocessed Receipts’ notebook and you can save yourself from carrying a wad of fading receipts around in your wallet or purse.
This is really great for business trips, conferences and networking events. Add some tags such as the event, financial period, *tax deductible and BAS and you have it all there when you sit down to do the books at home.
In a later post, I’ll be discussing specific Evernote tools such as Hello, Skitch and Food.