How To Be More Productive Using Microsoft OneNote 2013

Are you the one who is habitual of using sticky notes or keeping a pocket diary where you can note down all the important points while studying, write down meeting timings, tasks to do or other random thoughts and information? Are you looking for a tool that allows you to note down all related stuff while working on your PC?

OneNote is a tool that gathers all your information and notes in the form of organized ‘Notebooks’. This notebook is like a physical diary where you can make different sections.

OneNote 2013 is more like a brain processor where you can dump every plan and thought you are thinking of. It can serve as an important asset for you if you learn how to use and manage your data using OneNote. It can also serve as a brainstorming tool.

One Note 2013 Ribbon Bar

Let us start with a sample Notebook and explore the possibilities. You can either add a new notebook or choose from the available template notebooks. You can start with Personal or Work notebooks to help you manage your daily routine or work related notes. Click on the drop down arrow and select Personal Notebook.

Click on the ‘+’ button next to the ‘Quick Notes’ to add different sections in your notebook. You can add as many sections as you want and customize them.

Protect Your Notebooks

Every one of us does not own a personal computer or laptop but each of us want privacy for his/her documents especially your personal notebook which has everything that you may have in your mind. Encrypt your notebooks and prevent them from unauthorized persons by adding a password. To password protect any section:

Right click on the section and select ‘Password Protect this Section’.

Protect One Note 2013 Notebook

If you want to apply this password to all the sections of your notebook then press ‘CTRL+ALT+L’ (L is for the lock). Another way is to go to Review tab -> Password, and a panel will appear containing different options related to password protection.

Add Pages

Adding a page is really simple. All you need to do is to go into the section and find the ‘Add Page’ option in the right side panel. Click on it and give your page a proper title. Office offers a collection of Page Templates. Go to insert tab-page template. Or go to the online template library.

Add Pages in OneNote 2013 Notebook

Merge Sections

You can copy or merge different sections of even different notebooks. Let’s say you want to merge ‘To Do’ section from personal notebook to ‘Project 2’ of work notebook;

  • Right click on ‘To do’ section -> Select ‘Merge into Another Section’.

A window will appear that has all your notebooks. Select your required notebook and specific section to merge them. You can merge two sections at a time.

Merge Sections in One Note 2013 Notebook

Import Data into Notebook

Organize your data by inserting tables in your notebooks or add spreadsheets. Let’s assume that you want to import an excel spreadsheet containing expense and their details of Project Italy in your Work Notebook. To do so:

  • Click Insert -> Spreadsheet -> Existing Excel Spreadsheet and find it.
  • Inserting pictures is a traditional option available but you can also insert one or more files in the notebook.
  • Click Insert -> File Attachment -> Insert your required files.
  • Link up different sections and pages of your notebook so that you don’t need to open different notebooks when you need them.
  • Go to Insert -> Link -> Link any web address or file.
  • However, you can import audio or video but can only record them at the instant.

Import Data in OneNote 2013 Notebook

Tag Pages and Sections

Tagging is very helpful when you have a large number of documents. You can search pages and sections with specific tags as to do, important, question, idea, critical etc. There are many predefined tags, but you can also customize tags according to your needs.

  • Go to Home Tab-> Tags -> Select from the Tag Menu.
  • To add new tag, go to the bottom of the Tag Menu and click ‘Customize Tag’.
  • Add or modify a tag.
  • Similarly, you can also search all notebooks with a specific tag.
  • Go to Home Tab -> Tags -> Find a Tag.

Tag Pages and Sections in OneNote 2013

The Clipping Tool

Sometimes we need to take a screenshot of our work and make notes accordingly. You can not do this in Word 2013 rather you would be installing any snipping tool to capture your work. But the OneNote 2013, comes with a built-in clipping tool that would spare you from installing any other software.

  • Go to View -> Clipping Panel -> Clipping Tool.
  • Capture screen and insert it in your pages. You can also capture screen-shots using insert tab.
  • Go to Insert -> Screen Clipping.

Clipping Tool in OneNote 2013

Dock to Desktop

While working and researching on the Internet we often wish to note down several points. You may either use a paper and paper or copy-paste information into a separate word file. But if you are using OneNote 2013, you are blessed with a smarter option — Dock to Desktop.

  • Go to View -> Dock to desktop and OneNote will be appeared at the right of your desktop.
  • You can now easily take notes while surfing on the web or reading any research paper.

Dock OneNote 2013 To Desktop

We hope that you find this basic tutorial helpful and it will help you make intelligent use of the available tools to improve your productivity.