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HCL Notes OverviewUNIXBusinessApplication

HCL Notes is #6 ranked solution in top Email Applications. IT Central Station users give HCL Notes an average rating of 8 out of 10. HCL Notes is most commonly compared to HCL Verse:HCL Notes vs HCL Verse. The top industry researching this solution are professionals from a comms service provider, accounting for 30% of all views.
What is HCL Notes?
IBM Notes (formerly IBM Lotus Notes) is an enterprise email client software of the IBM Notes and Domino client/server platform that provides email, calendar and contact management capabilities and can integrated into IBM collaboration tools and business applications. It can support to track projects, collaborate on tasks, assemble teams, share files directly from inbox. IBM Notes email can be accessed from Apple iPhone, Android, Windows Phone, BlackBerry and other mobile devices. IBM Notes secure your system with included Secure Hash Algorithm 2 (SHA) support for encryption and Transport Layer Security (TLS) delivered by IBM and OAuth credential store to support Embedded Experiences.

HCL Notes is also known as IBM Lotus Notes, Lotus Notes.

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HCL Notes Customers
Connect2Cloud, Hansgrohe, Sauk County, Blue Water Shipping, FDBR, ibml, Multivac, Aarhus University Hospital, Hendricks Regional Health, Asian Paints, Integra Legal, Sunplus Technology, S¾SS, The Moroccan Ministry of Youth and Sports, Nicrometal, Doncasters Group, Practice Plan, Barr, RACV, Neotechnik, Deutsche Notes User Group
HCL Notes Video

Pricing Advice

What users are saying about HCL Notes pricing:
  • "The price is reasonable."
  • "We pay annually for the use of the solution."

HCL Notes Reviews

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HS
Sr. Analyst at a consultancy with 1,001-5,000 employees
Real User
Top 20
if you have no other choice, you just have to manage. The upside is stability and scalability.

Pros and Cons

  • "The product is very stable and scalable."
  • "It is easy to integrate the product with other services."
  • "Notes needs a major upgrade for the UI."
  • "It is a heavy program and uses more resources than an email client should."
  • "There is a chat component but it does not work properly."

What is our primary use case?

We have an on-premise deployment. After all, it is an email client. The way you use Microsoft Outlook or any other email client it makes sense to be deployed on-premise. They do have a SaaS version. The way it works when we are working on an enterprise laptop — the laptops that the company has provided us — it is installed on our systems. Other than that, the particular tool or email client can also be accessed via web login. We often use that when we are using it from a smartphone or any other non-company device.  

Our primary use case is just what it is: an email client. It is my stable solution and the only email client that I use. Web meetings are also a part of what we use it for. They have a solution — their adjacent solution is called IBM Sametime or HCL Sametime — which is the chat functionality. But our primary use case is as the email client.  

How has it helped my organization?

This is the third or fourth company that I am working for in my career and I have used several different email clients over that time. What happens is that an email client is just an email client. You receive emails, you send emails, and basically all emailing stuff that you normally do — like schedule meetings — goes through that email client.  

With HCL Notes, my organization has been able to do a little more in that regard. They have built in and integrated with other systems like the leave management. Because of this integration, I do not have a separate HR portal where I have to go in and apply for leave. All of that is managed through my email client. So rather than just being an email client, Notes ends up being a dashboard of all the communications that you want to take care of from within the company.  

Another example of integration is our custom IT management system which offers specific capabilities. Suppose I have to raise a ticket. I do not have to go to a separate IT portal and do that. I can create the ticket right through HCL notes. Suppose I want to access some internal files, I do not have to go to another internal portal which is built separately by the company. Again, I can find the files directly within HCL Notes.  

What is most valuable?

We are actually in process of shifting away from this software. I can not really think of any pros to talk about when it comes to this solution that make it better than something else. All I have to mention are cons because this is pretty outdated software. As proof of how outdated it is, even IBM — the creator of this email client — sold it to HCL to get rid of it.  

It is pretty much outdated and there are no not many pros of using it. Although, if you have to count, integrations are easy. My company has integrated a lot of different systems into HCL Notes. We have systems like leave (vacation) management, we have systems like resource management, and internal files and documents. All of these have been integrated with Notes. So it is a tightly knit tool. Really there are so many integrations that there are far too many.  

We have not done any comprehensive search to see if there are other email clients that allow this type of integration. For example, I would not know if even something like Microsoft Office allows users to build integrations or your own features into their email client. HCL Notes sure does allow integrations of many kinds and that is maybe the only pro that I currently find in this solution.  

What needs improvement?

The way Notes has improved us is that we are able to do a lot of things from the single platform of Notes. While it is a good thing — I would definitely say it is a good thing — but then this software is pretty heavily outdated. So that is a pain point. We do not really want to do everything through this platform, but it is the only platform where we have those tools now. In a way, it is good that we have a lot of capabilities built into the same platform, but this platform is old and it is sluggish.  

The first thing that I would like to see in a new version of Notes is a major improvement with the UI. With HCL Notes, once you open it, it looks like you are using Windows 98. That is how basic and rudimentary it is. The UI is definitely the primary area that can see improvement.  

Also in the UI, the general sense of the user experience can be enhanced. Things are really not always where you might think they should be. If I want to recall an email, two years after using Notes, I will finally know how to recall an email. I am sure that even 80% of my colleagues do not even know how to recall an email because that option is hidden somewhere deep in the options. HCL definitely needs to prioritize what users understand about the interface, what users want, and redesign the UI accordingly. It really is too late now. You are stuck in an ancient system when you compare the other solutions that are 20 years ahead of you.  

It feels pretty primitive. If you check the smartphone interface it is pretty basic. Things that you could do with Outlook in 2006 are things that can only be done by HCL Notes in 2020. The sense you feel when using Notes on a smartphone is almost like I am using a first-generation Android phone again. HCL does not really encourage using Notes through smartphones.  

There is a chat interface and they have a software called Sametime. That enables users to chat and send files to each other in real-time, which is similar to something like Skype for Business. It is there in HCL Notes, but it also does not work properly.  

There are many different, small examples that I can use to state how Notes does not work or where it is lacking. Definitely a tighter integration is needed to check what users want, and what users do not want. A total UI overhaul would be necessary to keep the product alive.  

For how long have I used the solution?

We have been using HCL (Hindustan Computers Limited) Notes for two years.  

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

No matter what I say about the product otherwise, it is a very stable solution. There are problems when some of those integrations do not work at first, but that is not from the solution side. I know about that for sure. That is from our side because we are using a primitive solution because we are a primitive company. So the problems within HCL Notes are not because of HCL Notes itself. It is because our IT infrastructure is pretty outdated. So there is no instability with the product itself. I would give Notes a 10-out-of-10 for stability.  

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

Notes does have the ability to scale. In that way, it is not a problem at all. With email clients, there are always some stability issues or scalability issues that can be there to get in the way of function, but one thing Notes does not have is a scalability issue.  

When it comes to scalability — I do not know if this particular parameter fits in — but it is pretty heavy software. If you were to use it with systems that were underpowered, it might crash the system. But, these days you do not have laptops that have so little computing power that they would not handle Notes. It could crash in some systems that are not powerful enough.  

For example, if you are trying to use HCL Notes in a primitive laptop, maybe something that was built in 2012 or 2010, it might take more memory than the full capacity of those machines. To run Notes, you need a machine with sufficient RAM and you need a better CPU because this is a heavy solution. An email client should not be heavy in the sense of consuming resources.  

We have between 1,500 and 2,000 users using HCL Notes in our company.  

How are customer service and technical support?

As far as the technical support for this solution, I really have no comment. Our contact point is through our internal IT handlers. I do know that they are difficult to reach.  

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

Previously I used Microsoft Office and Microsoft Outlook. That is really all I used before. Microsoft Outlook worked with Microsoft 365 and Office 365. If you are going to bifurcate between both of them — technically they are still different — I used both Office and Office 365.  

The main difference between Office 365 email client and HCL Notes is that everything is different. Microsoft Office for once works when compared to the competition and this competing product does not.  

Microsoft Office is tightly integrated with the normal software that you normally use because everyone uses Microsoft products when it comes to office productivity. If you are using PowerPoint or you are using Word, it is easy to integrate and send a file to someone within Microsoft Office. Microsoft also connects with OneDrive — a cloud solution — so there is really built-in centralized storage and collaborative capabilities. The files are easily transferable. In HCL, they do not have their own cloud which is integrated with Notes. Competing in the market is about being updated and keeping up. It is about being up to date with other tools in 2020.  

A new user of Microsoft Office will take maybe 10 days to learn to work with Outlook. Even Microsoft support is available. You might contact your own it staff, but Microsoft support is easy to contact. That is not the case with HCL. I mean, I am not sure if HCL support can even help me with Notes because I do not have a way to contact them. I can just go to my internal team and that is what I do.  

The lack of support is an issue. Usability, user experience, and feature placement are all definitely issues. If you just look at the number and the kind of features that Office has that HCL Notes just does not have, it is very apparent how behind-the-times the product is.  

We are moving to Office 365 and getting away from HCL Notes as soon as it is practical to do so.  

How was the initial setup?

This product was implemented back in 2000 and I joined the company two years back. I really do not know much about the initial setup. I hope that it was easy. The integrations are not very difficult.  

What about the implementation team?

I can not be sure how many people in total are responsible for the maintenance of HCL Notes exactly. Our staff is distributed between something like 45 countries, so it is difficult to tally. I am not sure how many IT people are situated in each country, but not more than 20 that are dedicated to Notes.  

What other advice do I have?

The biggest lesson I have learned from using HCL Notes patience, I must say. Other than that it becomes a much tougher question. I learned that there is not much to gain from this product, but that sometimes you can manage with inferior tools if you have to. That would be the tagline of HCL Notes if I had the opportunity to add one: "You just have to manage."  

On a scale of one to ten (where one is the worst and ten is the best), I would rate this product as a four-point-five out of ten. I will not be so harsh to give it the three or four that I think it deserves even though I would like to. It has worked at least somewhat to manage to be a centralized solution. I will give it a five.  

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

On-premises
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
MG
SAP Delivery Manager at a tech services company with 5,001-10,000 employees
Real User
Top 20
Reliable, priced well, and has good support

What is our primary use case?

We are using this solution in our company.

What is most valuable?

The most valuable feature is the UI.

What needs improvement?

I would like to see integration with other solutions.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been working with HCL Notes for ten years. We are using version 10.1.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

HCL Notes is a stable product.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

We have more than 10,000 people in our company who using this solution.

How are customer service and technical support?

Technical support is good.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We did not work with similar products prior to HCL Notes.

How was the initial setup?

The…

What is our primary use case?

We are using this solution in our company.

What is most valuable?

The most valuable feature is the UI.

What needs improvement?

I would like to see integration with other solutions.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been working with HCL Notes for ten years.

We are using version 10.1.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

HCL Notes is a stable product.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

We have more than 10,000 people in our company who using this solution.

How are customer service and technical support?

Technical support is good.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We did not work with similar products prior to HCL Notes.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup was straightforward. It is easy.

We have approximately 30 people to maintain this solution.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

The price is reasonable.

What other advice do I have?

I would recommend this product to others who are interested in implementing it.

We have been customers for more than 20 years.

In summary, this is a good product but there are always some areas for improvement.

I would rate HCL Notes an eight out of ten.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

On-premises
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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Marcos Roberto Silva
Diretor at MASTERDOM
Real User
Top 5
Beneficial migration applications, stable, and good support

What is most valuable?

The solution is practical, good interface, and performs well. The usability of the old applications to the new version of the client is very good. The migration is very good for some legacy applications.

What needs improvement?

The solution could improve by adding some more features.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using I rate HCL Notes for approximately 30 years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

I have found HCL Notes to be stable.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The solution is scalable. In my company, we have 20 people using the solution and our customers have approximately 20,000.

How are customer service and support?

The technical support is very good.

What about the

What is most valuable?

The solution is practical, good interface, and performs well.

The usability of the old applications to the new version of the client is very good. The migration is very good for some legacy applications.

What needs improvement?

The solution could improve by adding some more features.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using I rate HCL Notes for approximately 30 years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

I have found HCL Notes to be stable.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The solution is scalable.

In my company, we have 20 people using the solution and our customers have approximately 20,000.

How are customer service and support?

The technical support is very good.

What about the implementation team?

We have 10 people that do the implementation of the solution.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

We pay annually for the use of the solution.

What other advice do I have?

I rate HCL Notes a nine out of ten.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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FK
Technical Supoort Engineer L2 at a tech services company with 1,001-5,000 employees
Real User
Offers great security features; GUI and replication could be improved

What is our primary use case?

We primarily use this solution as a CRM. We are customers of HCL Notes. 

What is most valuable?

Security is the most valuable feature, better than you get in 365. It's a great system.

What needs improvement?

GUI, the graphic user interface, could be improved as well as replication.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The solution is stable. 

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

This is a scalable solution, we have 1,250 users in the company. 

How are customer service and technical support?

I'm satisfied with the technical support. 

What other advice do I have?

I rate this solution a seven out of 10. 

What is our primary use case?

We primarily use this solution as a CRM. We are customers of HCL Notes. 

What is most valuable?

Security is the most valuable feature, better than you get in 365. It's a great system.

What needs improvement?

GUI, the graphic user interface, could be improved as well as replication.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The solution is stable. 

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

This is a scalable solution, we have 1,250 users in the company. 

How are customer service and technical support?

I'm satisfied with the technical support. 

What other advice do I have?

I rate this solution a seven out of 10. 

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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