Monday, 16 November 2015

How to become a professional Note maker and learn important skills of note making.

“When ideas fail, words come in very handy”
-         Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe

 Communication is recognized medium of exchange of thoughts, deeds and views. Written communication plays a vital role in an office, whether it is government department public undertaking or private organizations. The working of the government office is continuous affair. The officers may come and go, but the policy of the government has to remain uniform in a given set of circumstances. It is therefore, necessary to have a written record of the reasons for adopting a particular course of action in a case so as to ensure identical treatment to a similar case coming up in future. The ‘note’ thus helps in maintaining consistency and continuity to the actions and decisions of the government.
Noting drafting is the most common and well established procedure for submission, examination and subsequent communication for final order on a particular subject. There is a well established and standard procedure followed in regard to noting and drafting. The procedure may vary from one department to another but the basic remains the same.

Meaning of noting and making a note :

‘Noting’ means preparing a note for taking a decision on a case.
Communication in the organization flows according to the formal channels in the organization i.e. from top to bottom. This communication indicates the line of action to be taken in a particular case. Noting is a written remark recorded on a note sheet requiring a communication under consideration. This written remark called ‘Note’ and the procedure followed in preparing a note called ‘Noting’. Noting is done to focus the important points of a particular communication under consideration. It may also include an explanation if required.
‘Note’ means the remarks recorded on a case to facilitate its disposal, and includes a precise of previous papers, a statement or an analysis of the questions requiring decisions, suggestions regarding the course of action and final orders passed thereon. The ‘Note’ also provide a very useful guide to the officers who may have to handle the same or similar cases in future in as much as they reveal the line of thought and logic behind the decision taken earlier. A ‘Note’ contains facts and figures, rules, law, procedures and precedents, if any, as also views of other sections/departments, which might have been consulted. It helps the decision taking authority in taking taking a decision. It should normally comprises a brief resume of the case, the analysis/statement of the points at issue, rule positions, best course of actions, orders of any already passed on the subject. It may be in any of the following terms :

1.     Summary of the case.

2.     An analysis of the questions requiring decisions.

3.     Suggestions regarding the course of action.

4.     Final orders passed there on.
Thus the main aim of an office is to inform and guide the officers who have to decide the case and help them to dispose it. The note also serves as conclusive proof for fixing responsibility for delays or inactions.

How a note should be written :

1.     Recorded on a Note sheet.

2.     Even at least one word should be carried over to the next page, instead of ending the note at the extreme bottom of the page.
At least one blank courtesy sheet be added for further action.
The practice of the note in the offices serves a very useful purpose as it helps the higher officers to dispose of a case promptly by going through the note in which the main question or questions on the case and the course of action are clearly stated. The dealing hand who writes the first not on a communication should put up a case properly, by stating the main points of the case, explaining its intricacies, analysing the issues involved, citing the laws or conventions and lastly, making suitable suggestions regarding the course of actions or orders.

 Kinds of Note making :

Mainly there are two types of Noting. They are:

1.     General Noting

2.     Office Noting.

General Noting : Whenever an individual requests for some information or permission which is not very important in nature, he writes a short note on a piece of paper and sends to the concerned person.

Office Noting : When remarks are written on note sheet regarding communication under consideration and are sent to higher authorities for
approvals, this is called office Noting. In addition to remarks, office noting is also meant for getting some permission or approval from executives.

Office Noting can be of two types :

1.     Simple Noting – Noting which is simple and short in nature.

2.     Detailed Noting – Noting which is explained and written in details.

3.     Routine Noting – Noting which is done in routine manner.

Importance of Noting :

The files in government offices, public sectors and some other organisation often contain two parts namely the left hand side is a noting section and the right hand side is correspondence section. Its importance is as follows :

1.     Noting reduces the time at each level of formal communication while passing the orders or instruction.

2.     It keeps a regular track of all the development and comments on a particular case.

3.     The authorities come to an accurate decision on the basis of noting without devoting a lot of time on it.

4.     Noting provides a line of thought and idea about how the case has taken shape.

Finally When it comes to principles of noting following steps should be kept in mind :

1.     Complete i.e., it should answer all questions that have been raised and all other possible questions that may arise while considering the case. Answers to questions such as What, Why, How , When , Where and Who will help in making the note complete.

2.     Clear, i.e. it should be written, as far as possible, choosing short, familiar words, using short sentences, in active voice, and preferring concrete expression in place of abstract ones.

3.     Concise and to the point, i.e., it should not contain wordy expressions, or trite or unnecessary expressions, and should include only relevant statement. It should be avoid repetitions either of words or ideas.

4.     Coherent, i.e., it should be logically arranged, striking to one idea for each paragraph and linking together sentences and paragraphs.

5.     Correct, i.e. it should factually correct, figures should be free from mistakes and the writing should be free from mistakes and the writing should be grammatically correct.

6.     Courteous, i.e. it should express idea tactfully, without hurting anybody’s feelings, and emphasize positive facts. If apparent errors or incorrect statements in an case have to be pointed out or if an opinion expressed therein has to be criticised, care should be taken to couch the observations in courteous and temperate language free from personal remarks.

7.     Organised properly i.e. it should put ideas in the best order for impact, reflecting clear thinking. The first paragraph should state the main point followed by paragraphs giving evidence and discussing it, and the final paragraph should contain recommendations.

8.  Visually attractive, i.e. it should be made attractive by diving the note in serially numbered paragraphs, using heading liberally, and keeping the paragraph of six to ten lines each. Where possible use bullets and other lists, and leave a small a small margin of about one inch on all sides(left, right, top and bottom).


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