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Live Collaboration Is the Biggest Problem with Evernote



I love Evernote, I do.  I've been using the personal version daily for years.  It's perfect for storing ideas, thoughts, task reminders and check lists – all constant needs in personal life.  Storing info, insights, tasks – all even bigger needs in business life.  Awesome!  I was considering signing us up today for a business account and had some realizations... how is live collaborative notes not a part of Evernote?  I really believe it's the biggest thing holding Evernote back.

  • Everything down to a simple work meeting?  Or a group of students taking notes during class?  I can only imagine the headache of having to go back in after the meeting and merge 10 different "conflict" versions.
  • Two people working on a project together checking off tasks?  One doesn't know the other is done until it updates.  Students, spouses, or business? I just paid somebody to do a task his coworker already completed.
  • Building a test review note?  Building a knowledge database for researchers?  For companies?  If one employee has a great sales pitch phrase and wants to go add it to the list, they don't even know somebody else is already viewing and working on that note.  Conflict and time wasted rebuilding the database.  Day after day after day.

Genuinely, this isn't meant as a rant.  It's really not.  We'd love all the other features Evernote offers, but for now we don't have much choice but to stick with a folder organized google docs / sheets.

The paid version of google for business is $5 with 30GB storage, email accounts, live collaborative sheets/docs, calendaring, tasks.  It's capable of storing info and ideas as docs and sheets.  It can store and link to any file type.  You can store files offline.  Everything is indexed and searchable.  Chat (and video chat).  Security, access, and admin controls.  People with personal google accounts can switch back and forth between accounts (by the way that's a feature free even in standard accounts). 24/7 support.  Sound familiar?  Evernote Business is trying to fill similar needs... right?  

Right now Evernote Business is $12 per user per month.  That's 2x more than Google and from what I can tell, what we're getting Evernote's superior organization scheme and searching text within images/PDFs.  I'd even consider paying Evernote a fee on top of our Google accounts.  But with the massive monetary time loss to click by click rebuilding databases and notes?  Right now, without live collaboration Evernote Business would hurt our business, not help it.  I could be wrong, but it seems that would be the case for most businesses.

Google offers live collaboration for free on all it's accounts, personal and business.  It's not some upgrade.  That's why it's used by students collaboratively taking notes in a lecture.  Companies creating reports and presentations.  As a long time personal user of Evernote, I know Evernote could be a MUCH better solution to those notes, info, and presentation needs.  Evernote could become the platform students and businesses turn to for info.  But for now, I guess I'll just keep using it for limited personal use.

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I don't disagree about Evernote's collaborative functionality or lack thereof. 

Remember though, Google's business model is very different to Evernote's. Google is continually gathering information about you from your data, Evernote say that they will never do this.

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