This post is part of "Evernote Tips & Tricks," a series of 3 posts. You can see all posts in the series.

I use Evernote to increase productivity and  simplify the processes for my ever expanding projects. The work flow includes writing blog posts, articles, the great American novel, client-intake, white-boarding processes or just jotting down ideas and to-do lists (the afore mentioned novel).

Streamlining the Process

Prior to Evernote, I was using notepad++ Windows based desktop text editor to record quick notes and blog posts. I also used Google Docs and email (saving as draft) for similar functions with cloud based storage. I even scribbled quick thoughts on iPhone’s native Notes application.

But they all had significant shortcomings. I had to use Dropbox to sync documents on my hard drive to the cloud and although the first bit of storage is free, the bytes can quickly add up, requiring premium services. Google is convenient as an online program but fails miserably as a desktop application with sync functionality. Both of these options also require third party mobile applications.

Have you ever successfully located your iPhone Notes during a miserable iTunes tether? Neither have I.

I tried the application two years ago on a Mac and it lacked the functionality and ease of use of today’s Window’s version. Enter Evernote for Windows. I haven’t tried the latest Mac version, but after two years, I’d imagine it’s up to speed.

Getting Evernote

  • Download and install evernote on your computer.
  • Create a free account.
  • Download application to your mobile device and login.

That’s it!

Increasing Productivity

Open the application on your desktop or mobile and click on “new note” and start typing. Evernote has basic word processing functionality like fonts, tables and spell-check (note to Evernote: Update your dictionary). Create a to-do list by inserting check-boxes.

There is no “save” feature since everything you type is saved as you enter it. A huge benefit. We’ve all lost documents in progress. No more.

Instead of folders or categories, Evernote uses tags. Organize your documents by assigning each new note a tag. The first line of each new note is recorded as the title for easy identification and retrieval. For instance, I have a “Lawyerist Blog” tag, so when I open Evernote and click on the tag in the left column, I get a list of blog posts I’m currently working on.

Forget to tag a new note? No worries, there’s a robust search feature built in.

Have multiple documents open. I have on average 20 web browsing tabs open at any given moment. Being able to work on multiple documents at the same time and within the same application is essential.

Evernote auto-syncs between your mobile devices, computer, and on the web at evernote.com. Doesn’t get more foolproof, accessible and productive than that.

Evernote wish list

Word or character count – especially useful for size based projects like blog posts, articles and book-writing, chapter by chapter. To compensate, I use web-based tool, Charcount.

More productivity tools

Additional features include Web clipping services which is especially useful for more significant research projects, and tracking finances by taking pictures of receipts and uploading or emailing to a designated folder. Quite sure I’ll discover many more features to increase productivity and streamline processes as I use this application more extensively. Please share your helpful tips and unique insights below.

Did I mention that Evernote is free?

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