I have been using Evernote for about three years now and I’m loving it! I use it a lot for personal purposes, but since I opened my drafting firm, Evernote became one of the most important tools I utilize to stay organized in my business. I’m a firm believer in systematizing and Evernote is the perfect resource to accomplish that.
If you are not familiar with Evernote, below is an introduction video to the product. I love how they used an example that is relevant to our trade.
Evernote can be used for variety of purposes. You can simply take notes, store ideas, files, articles, pictures, share presentations, store screenshots from the web and the list goes on and on. So how can Evernote be utilized in a drafting and design business? Below are just few ways I use Evernote in my drafting firm.
#1 Recording Project Information
As you know, some projects can go on for a long time. After a while it can be very easy to lose track of change orders, meetings notes, ideas, etc. I use Evernote to record everything about each project from start to finish. Below are some screenshots with my comments on exactly how I organize my notes on every project.
As you can see from screenshot above every job has its own note. I give each note a title that starts with the job number and job name. Then I add few relevant tags to each note, in this example, which is request to do drafting for an addition, I added the following tags, “Addition”, “Project Status” and “Project 2015”. Tags are helpful later on when you are searching for similar jobs from the past.
As far the body of the note I organize information regarding the project under the following categories, Service Requested, Client Information, Site Information, Consultant Information, Payment Log and Notes. Under notes, I record every activity on the project in chronological order.
#2 Storing Pictures from Site Visits
Another great way to utilize Evernote in a drafting firm is to record and store picture from your site visits. You can simply take pictures with your Evernote app on your phone. This is a convenient way to have all your job pictures stored in one place and add comments if needed.
#3 Recording Design Ideas
How often do you browse online, find some great idea that can be used in the future or in the current project, store it somewhere where you “know” you will find later and you end up loosing it? It happened to me all the time until I started using Evernote. I find it very convenient to categorize and store helpful design ideas, links and pictures for each project in one note. One of the great things about Evernote is the fact that it’s a cloud based program, meaning you can have it installed on all your devises (phone, desktop, laptop, iPad) and have your latest notes synchronized on each device. This comes in very handy when you use it during meetings.
#4 Sharing Ideas and Comments with Clients
Evernote is also a great way to share your notes and comments. In the picture above you can see a “share” button at the top right corner of the screenshot. This is an easy way to share your ideas with a client in a chat format. I find this helpful and convenient.
#5 Keeping Record of Helpful Resources
This is the same idea as #3 but I still wanted to mention it. I love the idea of having all helpful online resources in one spot.
#6 Keeping Record of Receipts
One of my goals is to completely switch to paperless office. Evernote is definitely helping do just that. All I have to do is just take a picture of a receipt and store it under the correct category. Evernote has a cool feature where it can find and identify text in the image, even if it’s a picture of a handwritten note. So searching through your receipts is easy.
I’m sure there are many other ways to utilize Evernote in a drafting firm, but these are top six ways Evernote is helping me in my business. Do you use Evernote in your business? What other ways you find Evernote helpful? I would love to hear from you in the comments below.