Now Reading
How to get the most out of OneNote in a project management context

How to get the most out of OneNote in a project management context

Como tirar o melhor partido do OneNote em contexto de gestão de projecto

If through your working day you have to take part in multiple meetings, you recognize the importance of Meeting Minutes.

Although there were times when Minutes were perceived as something complex, written in a very formal language and following rigid protocol, nowadays the minutes are a very useful document, simple to execute and easy to understand.

Minutes are nothing more than a written report, a document with an information resume, that provides an insight into what was discussed and/or decided at a certain meeting.

The main purpose is to inform those involved of the agenda and the resolutions made at the meeting. It can be used with an informative character or as a document of contestation and/or confirmation of decisions taken in a conflict situation.

The importance of a Project Meeting Minute

Meeting Minutes allow the Project Manager to state exactly when decision X was taken, or activity Y was carried out. The meeting Minutes add value to the project because bring clarity and transparency to all stakeholders and clarify any conflict or unclear point that may arise between parties.

On the other hand, and from the Stakeholder’s perspective, the meeting Minutes work as a guide, since it details all the issues discussed, decisions taken and next actions. Through the Minutes, the stakeholders (whether having attended the meeting or not) will know where the project stands and what the next steps are.

Important note: It is extremely important to write down everything discussed and/or decided in the meetings held at different moments of the project’s life in order to simplify its management.

Read on to find out more details on how to create a Meeting Minutes!

Using OneNote to create and share Minutes

Dear Project Manager, are you familiar with OneNote?

OneNote from Microsoft Office provides a range of features that can be very useful in the day-to-day life of project managers, especially in the creation and sharing of meeting Minutes.

OneNote enables you to:

  1. Create
    1. Disseminate
      1. Archive Meeting Minutes held throughout the life cycle of the project.

Information in OneNote is segmented into three major groups:

  1. Notebook
  2. Section
  3. Page.

It’s possible to organize the information the way that suits you best. The structure of OneNote should, for example, assign the NoteBook to the ‘Affinity Client’, the Project to ‘Marketing’, and the Section to the project phase (Phase 1, Phase 2, Phase 3). In the Section you can find the Page that is nothing more than the Minute itself.

With this information distribution it is possible to organize the Minutes history in a very simple and intuitive way, and so if needed, it will save time in the future looking for the moment when a certain agreement was obtained, or a decision was taken.

To enhance the Minutes organization, it’s title should include:

Year/month/day :: Client name :: Project name :: Project phase :: Type of meeting (daily, weekly, …)

See Also
O futuro do trabalho – Como trabalhar eficientemente em modo remoto

How to organize the meeting’s Minutes

Minutes can take several forms, depending on the context and needs. In our specific case, the minutes should list all the topics discussed, with a summary description of each one, decisions taken, dependencies identified, and next actions agreed upon. In these last ones, the responsible person and the respective date of conclusion should be mentioned.

If you want to make the Minutes of the meeting more appealing to your Stakeholders, make sure you share the information in a succinct and simple manner so that it is easy to read. Here’s my suggestion on how to present it:


  • Phase 1 discussion:
    • Discussion summary
  • Phase N+1 discussion:
    • Decision summary
      • Referring to decisions taken;
      • Point out dependencies;
      • Point out next actions.

Next Actions:

  • Phase 1 – Mention next action(s), responsible for it (them) and date(s) of conclusion;
  • Phase N+1 – Mention next action(s), responsible for it (them) and date(s) of conclusion;

It is also very important to mention in the Minutes the date the meeting was held as well as the Stakeholders invited to the meeting, indicating those that attended and those that haven’t attended the meeting.

In conclusion, the meeting Minutes become an important project management tool and OneNote becomes an important ally for an optimized, simple, and organized information sharing with all the intervenients and stakeholders. These are some of the best practices I’ve improved throughout my career but given OneNote’s versatility, the way information is presented can, of course, be better adapted to the business and project typology to better meet your specific needs.

I hope these tips are useful to you. Good projects!

What's Your Reaction?
View Comments (0)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.