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Aha! Ideas | Notes

Notes in Aha! Ideas are flexible and collaborative — use them to capture a customer interview, provide instructions on how to use the ideas portal, document processes, share research, or any other use that comes to mind.

You can nest notes along with whiteboards into collapsible hierarchies, collaboratively edit them with your teammates, add saved views to them, and visualize them by date. Notes might look simple but they provide a powerful way to capture and share information. You can even create personal notes for private use.

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Access workspace notes

You can access the notes for your workspace by navigating to Research Notes.

Create a new note

From the notes page for your workspace or team, click Add and select Note. The new note will appear.

Selecting Whiteboard from the create menu will create a whiteboard instead of a text note. Whiteboards are organized in your nested hierarchy alongside your notes.

Use the text editor to create your note and format it with headings, lists, tables, and inline media. You can also embed whiteboards and assign to-dos and watchers and start a discussion in the note's comments. Add a Date to a note to add it to Recent notes section of the My work page for everyone watching that note.

Add Tags to your notes below the date field. This is a flexible way to categorize your documents without using folders. You can search your documents by tag or use tags to filter when reporting on your workspace documents.

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Create a copy of a note

You can create copy of any note. Right-click a note's title from the List view or click the More options button on an open note. Then select Copy note. A copy of the note will open and will appear in the List view below the the original note.

If your note has a date added, you can copy it to the following week. This is a great option for preparing agendas for recurring weekly meetings. To copy a note to the following week, click its More options menu and select Copy to next week. The new note will appear on the My work page's Calendar view for the following week for anyone watching the note.

Copy note Same date will create a duplicate of a note with the same date as the original note.

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Use personal notes

Users with reviewer permissions do not have the ability to create personal notes and whiteboards. Reviewers added to your account prior to September 7, 2023 will continue to have access to any personal documents they created prior to September 7, 2023.

Some notes may be just for your personal use. Maybe you have a great idea for a new strategic opportunity and want to jot down some unfiltered thoughts. You might be drafting a presentation and want to work on the outline before you share it with your team. Or maybe you just need to write down the minutes of a meeting.

You can find a notes section just for you on your My work page. To get to them, open the workspace selector in the upper left and click My work. On the left side of your My work page, you will see a section called My documents. You can create personal notes and whiteboards from here.

Aha! users with owner and contributor permission levels can use personal notes.

Unless you share a personal note, it is only visible to you. Notes use the Aha! text editor, just like workspace notes, and you can #mention other records if you need to. Records you #mention will not link back to your personal note and you cannot @mention other users.

Watched notes

Add a Date to any workspace note that you are watching to have it appear on your Recents section of your My work page. Any note or folder that you are watching that has a Date added will populate here for the selected date regardless of its workspace location. You do not need to add yourself as a Watcher to every workspace note you want to see it on your My work page. You can watch all the notes within a folder, such as a folder containing team meeting notes. Just add yourself as a Watcher to the parent note in that folder. Then you will automatically be added as a watcher to all child notes in the folder — and if any of those notes have Dates on them, they will appear on your My work page on that date.

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Use templates

Note templates bring consistent structure to your documentation. They help you capture the right information when you're planning customer research, managing ideation meetings, or even communicating with your customers. You can access your template library and instantly add a new template to personal or workspace notes.

Click Add from your workspace or personal notes. Then click Use a template to open the template library. Templates will be listed in alphabetically order, but you can use search if you are looking for something specific. Use the Categories listed on the left side of your template library to find templates to support a specific purpose. If you have created custom note templates in your workspace settings, you will find them in the Custom category.

Click a template to see more details. From here, you can click Use template to add it instantly or Learn more to view detailed guidance and best practices on using it.

Add a template to an existing note

If you are already editing your note, you can add a note template to your existing draft. Click the More options menu in the text editor's toolbar and select Template to access the template library. Find the template you want to add and click Use template to add it wherever your cursor is in your draft.

Workspace owners and contributors can access the template library from a workspace. Any user can access the template library from their personal notes.

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Create a new note template

If you are a workspace owner, you can also create custom note templates for your teams.

Shared note templates are customizable using the Aha! Ideas text editor, so you can add tables, images, videos, and even Aha! Ideas views. They can be inherited from a workspace line in order to drive consistency across teams and establish a standard approach for documentation.

  • To create a new note template, navigate to Settings ⚙️ Workspace Document templates. Then click Add document templates and click Note.

  • To create a note template from a note you are currently editing, select the More options menu in the upper right corner of the note and select Save as template. Then enter a name for the template and click Create template.

You can only create templates from workspace documents.

You can create notes templates that can be inherited from a workspace line in order to drive consistency across workspaces and establish a standard approach for documentation.

You can find all custom note templates created in your account in the Custom section of the Aha! template library.

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Draft and improve text with AI

You can use the artificial intelligence (AI) writing assistant in the Aha! text editor to help you create clear, polished text in the right tone — so that you can communicate effectively without spending extra time and effort. Use AI to draft emails to customers, refine what you have already written, summarize long passages, and more.

Click the wand icon on your toolbar to prompt AI to generate a first draft of your note. Highlight existing text and click the wand to prompt AI to apply changes in tone, summarize passages, make formatting changes, and more.

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Insert media inline

You can add images, audio, and video files to your note inline to add context to your note's content. When you add media, it will appear alongside the text in your note. Inserted audio and image files will include a play button — so anyone who has access to your note will be able to play the audio or video file you have added without leaving your note.

To add media, click the Image icon in your text editor's toolbar. Then select the media file you would like to add and click Attach. The file will appear inline and also as an attachment to your note.

Supported audio file types include mp3, .wav, and .ogg. Supported video files include .mp4, .webm, and .ogv, and should be smaller than 300MB.

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Add Aha! views to notes

Notes are excellent tools for collaboration and ideation, so it often makes sense to add Aha! Roadmaps views directly to a note. With list reports, pivot tables, charts, or custom roadmaps, you can focus a discussion or highlight insights that inform the rest of the note. Workspace owners, contributors, and reviewers can add Aha! views to notes.

To add views to a note, open it and click the + icon from the top of the text editor. Then click Aha! view. The Add new view modal will appear and guide you through the process.

First, choose from Custom views — reports and custom roadmaps you have created earlier and saved — or from a selection of Example views. If you choose an example view, you can modify it later. Use the filters on the left to narrow in on a specific type of custom or example view to add, then click Add to note to add your selection.

When you add one of these views to a note, Aha! Roadmaps copies the view and your note view displays the copy. This way, changes you make to the configuration of the original view — the view's type, style, or filters — will not affect the information displayed in your note. Changes you make to your Aha! Roadmaps data will be reflected in either view.

Once you have added your view, click and drag a corner to Resize it. Or click its More options button to Open the report it is based on, Configure the view you have added to your note, or Remove the view altogether. When you Configure the view, you can change the view's Title or — for chart views — choose to show the chart's Legend.

A chart's legend will appear on the side of your chart that you have selected in the chart's Customize view menu.

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Embed a whiteboard in a note

You can embed a whiteboard directly into your note to add diagrams, sketches, and other visuals alongside text in your note. While editing a note, just click + on the text editor toolbar and select Whiteboard. A new whiteboard will be added below your cursor. Click the pencil icon to edit the whiteboard. When you are finished editing the whiteboard, click the X to exit and return to your note. To remove an embedded whiteboard from a note, click the trash icon and click to confirm that you would like to delete it.

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Comment directly on notes

In addition to collaborative editing, notes in Aha! Ideas support inline text comments. Inline comments allow you to highlight the exact part of the note you want to discuss, then create conversation threads to focus on and resolve the issue.

To create a new inline comment, highlight the text you want to comment on and click the Add comment + icon that appears on the right side of the text editor. Your text will be highlighted and underlined in orange, the Comments sidebar will appear, and you can start creating your comment. Click Save comment once you are done.

Resolved comments will be highlighted and underlined in green and you can always reply to a resolved comment to reopen it.

Inline comments have access to the full text editor, so feel free to format your text, @ and #mention Aha! Ideas users and records, add and color tables, or insert media.

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Organize your notes

Once you have created a few notes and whiteboards, it makes sense to organize them. Bringing structure to these documents is as easy as clicking and dragging them in the left side panel of the notes page.

Folders

Folders are a simple way to keep your notes organized.

To add a folder, click Add and select Folder from your workspace or personal documents. Name your new folder, then drag and drop it into the desired place in your document hierarchy.

Note: If you want to include a description, try using parent and child notes in your document hierarchy.

To add a document to your folder, select your folder and then choose the type of document you want to add. Drag and drop existing notes to move them into a folder.

Parent and child notes

Parent and child notes are organized just like systems of folders. The only difference is that instead of having a folder as a container for a group of notes, one note serves as a parent note with child notes nested below it, setting up a nested hierarchy. This is useful when you want to include specific directions or details to a group of notes for context.

  • To nest one note under another, click it and drag it on top of another document.

  • To remove a note from a parent-child relationship, click it and drag it to a new location.

Reorder notes

To reorder a note, click on it and drag it to your preferred order. If you drag a parent note, all nested child notes and whiteboards under it will come with it. Note: You can drag parent notes to new locations whether they are expanded or collapsed, but it might be easier visually to do this while they are collapsed.

When you drag a note or whiteboard to a new location, the blue bars in your Aha! Roadmaps account will show you where it will land in order.

  • A thin blue bar means your note will exist above or below another document in the order.

  • A thick blue bar means that your note will be nested under another document in the order.

Sort notes

You can quickly sort a folder's contents to keep your documents organized. Right-click a folder or parent document to sort its contents by Name or Date created.

Note collections and standalone notes

Organizing your notes into nested hierarchies is just the first step. As you build out the workspace and personal notes in your account, your notes hierarchy can become quite complex.

Instead of scrolling through a hierarchy expanding every parent note, click on a parent note to see a preview of all its child notes.

  • Note collections — child notes with sub-notes of their own — display here as tiles. Each collection includes the first three lines of the note's description, the top three child notes, and a total note count.

  • Standalone notes — child notes without sub-notes of their own — are listed at the bottom.

You can control what notes appear in these views by clicking on a parent note, then clicking More options Hide nested notes.

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Customized title icons

Every note you create has a title icon. By default, this is a page icon for standalone notes, and a folder icon for parent notes. You can change these title icons to emojis to help your notes and note collections stand out.

To do this, open a note and click its title icon. Click or search for any replacement emoji you prefer, and the title icon will update.

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View note history

Every note created automatically tracks the history of edits that have taken place. You can revert back to previous versions of a note by clicking the History icon in the text editor and then moving the slider to the time frame you want to revert to.

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Share and export your notes

Once you have created your note, you may want to share your work with people who can give feedback and add value. Share your note with anyone to collaborate and drive alignment — even with people who are not users in your Aha! account. Account administrators can enable or disable all note sharing for your Aha! account at any time.

Share a note

You can share a note with anyone — just send them a shareable link. Anyone in your account can share a personal note that they have created. Owners or contributors can also share workspace notes — but viewers and reviewers for a workspace cannot share workspace notes.

To share a note:

  1. Open your note and click the Share button in the upper right corner.

  2. Click Get shareable link.

  3. Select whether anyone with the link can View or Edit the note.

  4. Click Copy link.

  5. Share the link with anyone.

You can disable the link whenever you choose. If you disable the link, anyone who has the link but has not yet accepted access to the note will not be able to access it.

If the person you want to collaborate with is not a user in your Aha! account, they can still collaborate on your note:

  • If they do not have an Aha! account or trial in progress, they will be prompted to create a free guest account. After they do, they will be able to access the document you shared with them.

  • If someone accesses your shared document while they are in a trial period and then their trial expires, they will not lose access — their trial account will become a free guest account so they can continue to access and collaborate on shared documents.

Users with guest access to any document in your account will not have access the document's Share menu.

If a reviewer has permission to view, but not edit a document, they can click Request edit access to send an email to the workspace owners and the person that created the document. A workspace owner can then choose to update the edit permissions for all reviewers.

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Viewing and editing permissions

After you have generated a shareable link, you can configure viewing and editing permission for any individual note. Select the Share menu. You will see two different permission sections:

Guest access: Anyone who has accessed your note from a guest or trial account will be listed here. Click anyone's initials to change their permission to Edit or View. Hover over a guest's initials or avatar and click the trash icon to revoke their access.

Reviewer access: The default reviewer permissions for your document will be inherited from your workspace settings, but you can change them on a per-document basis. Select View or Edit to update all reviewer's permissions for your note.

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Accept a note

Your colleague will provide you with a link when they want to share a note with you. Click the link to open the invitation to view the document. You can then select an option to View the document or Ignore the document.

You will be prompted to log in or sign up if you choose to View the document.

If you do not have an Aha! account, you can create a free guest account to view the document.

If you do have an Aha! account, log in to the view the document. After you have accessed it, the document will appear in the Shared with me section of your My work page. If it is located in a workspace that you have access to in your account, it will open within that workspace.

To see who has access to a shared document and will potentially see any edits you make, click the Shared icon at the top of the document next to its title.

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Configure sharing settings

Account administrators can navigate to Settings ⚙️ Account Security and single sign-on and uncheck the box next to Enable document sharing at any time to turn off link sharing for notes. Doing so will turn off all link sharing in the account for notes and whiteboards. Any links that were generated prior to disabling this setting will stop working, and both personal and workspace notes and whiteboards will no longer be shareable with users outside of your Aha! account.

When document sharing is enabled, anyone in your Aha! account can share a personal note that they have created. Owners and Contributors can share workspace notes. Viewers and Reviewers cannot share workspace notes.

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Export a note

The Export button offers you several options to export and display your note. You will find the Export button in the upper right corner of your screen. From the Export menu, you can:

  • Add to Whiteboard as image to add an image of your note to a new whiteboard in your personal notes.

  • Add to Webpage to share a workspace note as a webpage.

If you have enabled Aha! Ideas Advanced in your Aha! account, you can use this option to embed a note in a custom page in your ideas portal.

  • Export PNG image or PDF document for a static version of your note.

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Share your note to a custom page on your ideas portal (Ideas Advanced)

If you have customization administrator permissions, you can share notes by adding them to custom pages on your ideas portal. Create a note with instructions for how to use the portal, or updates like release notes and news about upcoming features, then publish them to a custom page that will show in your portal's navigation.

Custom pages cannot be added to submit-only portals or to portals using the classic design.

To add a note to a custom page, go to Settings Pages and click + Get started. Then click the Add page button to create your first custom page. Select Note. Next, configure your page settings:

  • Page name - This appears as the page's tab name at the top of your portal.

  • Heading (optional) - This will be shown as a title at the top of your custom page.

  • Description (optional) - This is a rich text field that you can use to provide context about the roadmap or note you share on this page.

  • Note selection - Here, you can select any note in any workspace that you have access to view. If a note has nested notes beneath it, those will also be shared along with a left navigation.

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Move notes to another workspace

Sometimes notes are created under one workspace, but then you want to move them to another workspace. The same goes for personal notes — you may find that a note you have drafted in your personal notes would be better suited for a workspace.

Use the More options button on notes to move them. If you move the note at the top of a hierarchy tree, all child notes move as well.

You can also move a workspace or team note to a personal note. Instead of choosing Move to workspace from the Move note menu, select Move to personal notes.


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