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How to Organize Meeting Minutes Using Word

Updated April 17, 2017

Many meetings need a record of the discussion that takes place along with any actions that need to be taken after the meeting is adjourned. An organised set of meeting minutes reminds the participants of what needs to be done and gives those absent an idea of what occurred. Since meetings often do not follow an exact agenda, getting your minutes organised can be time consuming. To help structure your meeting minutes, you can use one of Microsoft Word’s templates. Templates provide a predetermined structure to help your organise your meeting notes quickly.

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  1. Gather together your notes, a list of the people attending the meeting and their contact information. You will also need a list of the people absent from the meeting and their contact information. Often meeting notes are sent to others who are impacted by the meeting results. Ask your supervisor who else needs to receive the meeting notes.

  2. Open Microsoft Word. Click on the “Microsoft Office Button” in the upper left-hand corner of the Ribbon. When a new dialogue box appears, scroll down under the left Templates task pane and then click on “Minutes.” The middle task pane changes to show you all the meeting minute templates you can use.

  3. Double-click on the “Meeting Minutes” template for this example. The minutes template section contains several templates to help organise your information including informal and PTA minutes templates. You can always choose a template that meets your individual needs. Once you double-click, the template is downloaded from Office Online.

  4. Highlight “Meeting Title” and type in your text. Press the tab key to go to the next field and type in your information. Continue filling in your information by pressing the tab key and typing in your information. All templates are guides to follow. If you do not have a text for a section of the template, highlight the text field and press delete.

  5. Save your file by clicking on the “Microsoft Office Button” and “Save.” Type in a file name and click “Save” again. If the minutes template was created with a previous version of Office, you will need to click on “OK” to save the document. This saves the document to the current Word version format and will not change your document.

  6. Print your document by clicking on the “Microsoft Office Button” and “Print.” Click “OK” to print your document.

  7. Tip

    If you need to send your minutes to several people via e-mail and you do not know which version of Word they have, you can also save your minutes as a portable document format (PDF) file from Word. Click on the “Microsoft Office Button” and then select “Save As.” Click on “PDF or XPS” and then type in a name for your file. Click “Publish” to save the file as a PDF file and attach the PDF version of your file to an e-mail message.

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Things You'll Need

  • Meeting Notes
  • Participants and absentee contact information
  • Microsoft Word (this tutorial is specific to Word 2007)
  • Internet access

About the Author

Anni Martin

Translating technical jargon into everyday English is one of Anni Martin’s specialties. She is an educator and writer who spent over 13 years teaching and creating documentation at the University of Missouri. She holds a Master’s Degree in educational technology as well as Bachelor’s degrees in journalism and political science from the University of Missouri.

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