There is a lot said and written about the differences between Lotus Notes and Outlook and many feel the only reason behind migration from Lotus Notes to Outlook is the high cost of Lotus Notes. It is important to note that the requirement at workplaces is that of email clients whereas Lotus Notes is not simply an email client, it is actually much more than that. To sum up, it consists of the following components:
Mail electronic communication tool
Address books personal and organizational contacts information
Calendar electronic diary tool
To do List an electronic list of tasks to be completed
Quickplace a group storage and work flow management tool
Sametime a real time messaging and desktop sharing application
The complementing products available along with Lotus Notes include Sametime instant messaging, IBM WebSphere Portal, Tivoli Directory Integrator, Websphere Application Server etc. Therefore, the wide range of features available with Lotus Notes makes it look user-unfriendly, leading the employees to be less efficient at work.
Since the requirement is simply email client, Outlook seems to be far superior in mail handling, setup and overall is easy to use. Using Outlook you can drag mails and tasks straight into the calendar (converting to an appointment). Simply add Notes and activate a tracking journal; you can open and compare calendars of groups and automate the revision of a document making it far more user-friendly. Additionally, Lotus Notes chews more space on system when compared to MS Outlook.
Outlook is considered better for searching and finding, referencing and archiving emails according to date, subject, and keyword. With such features, user can perform complex search which makes easy filtering of emails based on multiple criteria. Forwarding and amending attachments, adding email address to your address book directly from received emails and creating mail rules that apply to all subfolders offers Outlook an edge from Lotus Notes. The difference is surely made as per the user experience, and so as per the Lotus Notes user perspective:
Unable to multi-task – When you try sorting a view in .NSF file with 100000 documents and read the mail while the sort finished, it can actually become impossible as it cannot be done.
Lotus Notes email – Quite basic as compared to other free web-based offering available.
Lotus Notes Calendar issues – Doesn’t seem to be competent enough and remember not to delete the calendar document or response document as everything will disappear. Don’t forget to create your meeting response folder as when you do not accept a meeting invite, it never shows up in the calendar view. So, if you receive 100 emails a day, you can’t miss one or you will miss the meeting etc.
Owing to its database driven structure, Lotus Notes surely enjoys advantage over other conventional email clients. Still there are numerous organizations that feel like migrating from Lotus Notes to Outlook (NSF to PST). Through this article, we tried to throw light on some of the basic reasons why user feel Outlook is a better choice over Lotus Notes.