What Are the Benefits of Using OneNote?

By Andrew Mikael

Microsoft's OneNote collaboration program serves as a central area for multiple users to work together and share information using digital "notebooks." It acts as a repository for many different types of files and has unique organizational features to keep data on hand and easily retrieved. Benefits of using OneNote include easier networking, more efficient file usage, compatibility with most common file types and integration with other Microsoft Office products.

Collaboration

OneNote's sharing feature allows multiple users on a network to connect to the same notebook to view the information or make changes. Since a notebook may have many different authors and a huge volume of information, OneNote automatically highlights recent changes and lists the authors of new material for ease of collaboration. OneNote also has a Web app and a mobile app for connecting from devices without the full version of the software installed.

Information Storage and Retrieval

Unlike some search indexing, OneNote's incremental search feature begins displaying results as you type for quickly locating the desired files. Users can add keywords to audio and video files for that will aid others in quickly locating and opening the media. OneNote searches can span the entire history of the application or focus on single notebooks or groups of notebooks.

Office Integration

As part of the Office program suite, OneNote uses the same interface as other Office software. This makes it easy for users familiar with Word or Excel to navigate the menus and options of OneNote. In addition to working natively with most Office file formats, OneNote can send and receive documents to and from other Office programs, including sending files directly to Word or sending an email in Outlook to a notebook.

Multimedia Capabilities

While most productivity software focuses on a single file type, OneNote works with most common data formats and can import many different types of media. Compatible formats include Excel, Word and PowerPoint documents; GIF, JPEG, PNG, BMP and TIFF image files and WMV video files. Users may also record new media directly in OneNote using an attached webcam and microphone.