How to Record Meeting Minutes and Why It’s Important?

Learn how to record minutes efficiently, why it’s important, and best practices to follow in this guide.

April 22, 2022
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Ask any note-taker and they’ll tell you minute-taking is a tedious task they must “get through.” Identifying important snippets of information exchanged in the meeting room and summarizing them isn’t the most interesting task in the world.

Meeting minutes are important, though.

Meeting minutes are useful for keeping track of what was said in a meeting, action items, and decisions made during the meeting. That’s why minute meetings are mission-critical.

In this article, we embolden you to record meeting minutes more confidently. We’ll give you a meeting template and best practices to follow so you never have to feel intimidated when recording meeting minutes.

What are Meeting Minutes?

Meeting minutes are notes that summarize a meeting such as key decisions taken in a meeting and a suggested course of action to address a problem. Contrary to its literal meaning, meeting minutes shouldn’t include every minute of the meeting. They should only include crucial details that capture the essence of the meeting. Meeting minutes are a valuable resource that give interested parties an overview of the meeting, especially people who weren’t able to attend the meeting in person. 

It’s a document you can use as a reference to hold management accountable for action items and help establish facts when your company is in legal trouble.

Benefits of Meeting Minutes

The effort you put into minute-taking isn't in vain. Recording meeting minutes can offer several benefits to your company, such as:

  • Accountability: Meeting minutes contain specific details such as who an action item was assigned to and the votes of each member so the right members can be held accountable.
  • Reference for decision-makers: Decision-makers can reflect on opinions and refer to action items as inputs for making decisions in the future.
  • Historical record of facts: Ever had someone tell you “you didn’t tell me that?” Meeting minutes serve as a database of facts for everything that happens in a meeting. You’ll always have a record of facts so no one gets away with “I didn’t know about that.”
  • Makes it easy to assign tasks in the future: You may have repeat projects or tasks that require prior experience. Referring meeting-minutes gives you the chance to look at who an action item was assigned to in previous meetings. You can assign similar action items to the same person given their experience.
How to Record Meeting Minutes?

It’s easy to feel that every comment thrown around during the meeting belongs in the minutes. Instead of focusing on redundant information, you want to include information that will give future minutes readers a summary of the meeting. For instance, you can skip any discussion outside the original agenda while recording the minutes.

Instead of using a checklist of things to include in minute meetings, create a template for each meeting type. Add placeholders for every detail you need to include in the minutes. The following is an example of a meeting minutes template that you can use the next time you need to record meeting minutes:

Meeting Minutes Template

Date

04-01-2022

Members in attendance: 

  • Alfred Moore
  • Henry French
  • Samuel Brown
  • Elise West
  • Tina Fleming

Members not in attendance: 

  • Karen Kent
  • Laura Simmonds

Call to order

The meeting for restrategizing ABC product’s marketing strategy began at 10:00 a.m. with Alfred Moore in charge. 

Agenda Item #1

  • Summary of the agenda item.
  • Motions made with relevant information.
  • Other important details.

Adjournment

The meeting ended at 11:30 a.m..

Next meeting

07-01-2022

Creating a template can provide a standardized format for meeting minutes and minimize the chances of overlooking important information. Instead of spending time formatting and editing, use Assembly for your Meeting Notes. 

Prepare Meeting Minutes with Assembly

Old-school techniques are inefficient. Why spend all that time formatting a meeting minutes template when there’s an easier way? 

Using a tool like Assembly that allows quickly creating customizable workflows can save you plenty of time.

Creating meeting minutes is a quick three-step process with Assembly:

  1. Sign up for a free account and log in.
  1. Click on Add a new flow, search for “meeting notes,” and select the Meeting Notes workflow template.
  1. Scroll to the Content section and fill out the details based on the type of template you’re creating.

Learn the complete process of building a flow from an Assembly template:

Meeting Minutes Best Practices

Meeting minutes are helpful for any team or organization. Here are the best practices you should follow:

  1. Study the agenda beforehand

You should study the agenda a few days before the meeting. This way, you can create an outline for the meeting minutes based on the agenda.

The outline will help you focus on the conversation and allow members to proceed at their normal pace, without having to wait for the minute-taker to catch up.

  1. Stick to a format

Designated someone new for recording minutes? They may use a different format than the person who usually records minutes. 

Avoid this by establishing a standard company-wise template for meeting minutes for all types of meetings.

  1. Be objective

You might need to summarize arguments or debates in the meeting minutes. Since the secretary is also a voting member, there’s a small chance of bias creeping into the meeting minutes. 

Make sure you don’t pass judgments or make any suggestions. Read the minutes the following day to ensure everything is objective. 

Where necessary, have a third-party read the minutes, but make sure it’s someone not privy to the confidential information.

  1. Include important details

You should aim for brevity when recording meeting minutes, but not at the expense of essential details. Here’s what should definitely include:

  • Date, time, location, and type of meeting
  • Attendee’s list
  • The time of calling to order and adjournment of the meeting
  • Details of motions and the outcome of the motion

You should aim to hit the sweet spot with details—keep it brief, but be specific enough to give stakeholders the context to make decisions.

  1. Review and distribute

Once you’ve finished recording meeting minutes, proofread. Ensure everything’s as per the standard format. 

If you need to make any additions, now’s the time. When everything looks good, distribute the meeting minutes to the attendees.

Meeting Minutes Made Easy

Recording meeting minutes doesn’t need to be a stressful job. You can make minutes-taking less stressful with a template that outlines the details you need to include. You’ll find recording minutes even easier when using a modern solution like Assembly. There’s much more that Assembly offers, though.

Assembly is a comprehensive employee engagement platform with the ability to create collaborative workflows. Sign up for a free account and try Assembly yourself.

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There is study after study showing that employee recognition leads to increased engagement. This in return creates an environment where employees are happier and more motivated which increase productivity and reduces voluntary turnover significantly. In order to filled critical roles, companies tend to spend nearly twice the value of an annual salary. Assembly is an investment in your employees that supports your bottom line.

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That depends on the company's permissions set up. That said, over 90% of the employees on Assembly's platform are recognized on a monthly basis. That means nearly every employee across all of our customers are receiving regular recognition from their peers, managers, or leadership. We're extremely proud of this.

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