With the pandemic accelerating the adoption and popularity of remote and hybrid work, teams and their clients are becoming more far-flung across the world. The effect of this is that more people with different schedules and time zones are working together and relying on virtual meetings and asynchronous collaboration to stay connected and aligned.
However, teams need more than just their calendars and web conferencing applications to achieve these.
This is what makes management and transcription software so important.
These software are making virtual meetings more convenient and productive by helping teams schedule, live transcribe, and record meetings. Some even include an AI note-taker and options for collaboration.
In this article, we will look at one of the best-known meeting management software - Otter.ai-, its top alternatives, and how to select the right software.
Otter.ai is well-known and has decent live-recording, transcription, and note-taking features for meetings. These allow teams and individuals to document and share key points from meetings with other stakeholders.
Otter also integrates with calendars, web conferencing platforms, and file hosting platforms like Dropbox, which increases its functionality and makes working more efficient.
But Otter.ai fails in a number of ways that some of its alternatives excel in.
For example, Otter.ai does not have a multilingual transcription so its transcriptions are only in the English language. It also sometimes fails to tell speakers in a meeting apart or transcribes words and sentences inaccurately.
So, to help you make better choices on your meeting management software, we will look at seven Otter.ai alternatives you can choose from. But first, let’s talk about how we made our selection.
To select the top Otter.ai alternatives, we reflected on the question: “What makes a great meeting management tool?”
We decided that great meeting management tools must be able to help individuals and teams achieve productive meetings by:
It was also important that the tools selected share similarities with Otter.ai and are top performers in their class in terms of efficiency, interface, and the quality of their offerings.
Following our reflections and tests, we shortlisted the seven apps that we will look at in detail next.
The following are Otter.ai’s top alternatives:
Airgram is an AI meeting assistant for video conferencing platforms like Zoom, Google Meet, and Microsoft Teams. It is designed specifically to make every part of planning, running, and following up on a meeting easier, more productive, and more collaborative.
Using Airgram, you can schedule a meeting with a Zoom link from your Google Calendar, outline your agenda with timers, and share it with other participants before the meeting. This way, you can map out and stick to your goals for the meeting.
You can also launch your meetings from Airgram yourself or leave it to the Airgram Bot to help you automatically join on schedule.
The Bot can live-transcribe and record meetings while analyzing statements in the transcripts to note potential action items.
Airgram’s clips enable you to extract key information out of a lengthy transcript effectively. You can capture and share those highlights via link.
In addition to these, Airgram has app integration functions that make sharing meeting notes, transcriptions, and clips from the meetings on Slack, Notion, Slack, Microsoft Word, and Google Docs quick and easy. This keeps both team members and external stakeholders aligned and on track.
All Airgram’s functions are currently available for free but their subscription plans will be released soon. You can learn all about it here.
Individuals can also use Airgram because it is currently free and nimble enough to serve individuals and teams of various sizes.
tl;dv functions majorly as a meeting documentation tool for Google Meet and Zoom.
Its goal is simple – reducing the number of meetings you attend and the number of team members required to participate in meetings. The tl;dv bot achieves this by recording and live transcribing meetings while allowing participants to highlight critical moments that would be later shared with the rest of the team.
tl;dv is easier for beginners at using meeting management tools to navigate than Otter.ai.
Hugo Team makes meetings more productive by clearly defining the goals of the meeting before going into it and ensuring that the meeting outcomes are represented in clear, detailed, and actionable form.
With Hugo Team, you can set up meetings, create agendas, send meeting invites and take notes during meetings. The app also allows you to share follow-up tasks and insights with the team after the meeting. All these tasks can be carried out collaboratively with other members of the team.
In addition to its built-in functions, Hugo Team has an impressive app integration range that allows you to connect it with your CRM, work, and productivity apps to get more out of it. Some examples of this are auto-posting notes on Slack, adding Loom videos to agendas and meeting notes, and syncing meeting notes with CRM records that match the meeting.
Hugo Team is suited to teams that have a level of technical expertise on how to navigate complex interfaces and get the best out of tech products. But Otter.ai is relatively more beginner-friendly.
Fireflies is a meeting assistant that allows you to audio-record and transcribe meetings on web conferencing platforms.
The goal of Fireflies is to make meetings easier to follow and review by reducing the need for note-taking and making scanning through recordings and transcriptions faster.
Fireflies records and live-transcribes meetings and processes them for a few minutes. Once the processing is complete, Fireflies will give you a summary of the meeting, the recording, and the transcript which you and other team members can flag and add time-stamped notes to.
The recording can be shared immediately after the conclusion of the meeting to team members, meeting participants or other stakeholders by simply adding their email.
Otter.ai alsom on the other hand, serves teams and individuals with similar needs but is majorly concerned with documenting meetings.
Fireflies is more flexible than Otter.ai because it allows users to customize their experience by using Zapier to increase the app’s integrations and functionality. So, teams with more technical expertise will get more out of Fireflies.
Descript is a little different from all the other apps that we have looked at so far. This is because even though some of its features could be useful in managing meetings and making them productive, that is not its main purpose.
Descript is majorly an audio and video editor with screen recording and transcription functions. It allows you to record or upload videos and audios for immediate transcription. You can then edit the video and audio files by simply making changes to the transcript generated.
However, as far as meetings go, Descript can help you record and transcribe sessions on web conferencing platforms.
Descript is best for teams and individuals that do not require lengthy transcriptions because its transcription only runs up to 30 hours a month while Otter.ai transcriptions are unlimited.
Happy Scribe is an audio transcription and subtitle service that allows you to convert speeches to texts and add subtitles to video documents in over 120 languages, dialects, and accents.
Unlike Otter.ai, Happy Scribe is not a meeting management tool. But you can use Happy Scribe to transcribe or subtitle recorded meetings.
With Happy Scribe, you can choose between machine-generated or manual transcription. The machine-generated option is estimated to have up to 85% accuracy while the manual option, which is completely human-made, is estimated to have a 99% accuracy.
The app also has an audio joiner function that helps you merge all kinds of audio files.
However, teams can opt for the Business Plan that has a higher transcription time so that teams can record and transcribe all kinds of meetings.
Otter.ai, on the other hand, serves teams and individuals by default but has documenting meetings as its main use.
So, people whose tasks depend on accuracy, like journalists, and are likely to prefer paying on a per-project basis might find Happy Scribe more suitable while those who require faster output might find Otter.ai more useful.
Grain is a meeting management tool that helps teams plan, execute, and follow up on Zoom meetings.
With Grain’s calendar integration, you can schedule your meeting and invite other participants. You can also set your meeting to auto-record on Grain by connecting your Calendar to the app and selecting the types of meetings you would like to record.
Grain’s live transcription is available in nine languages. You and your team can work collaboratively on the transcript, edit and download it in the format of your choice.
You can also create short clips of meeting highlights by selecting the part of the video you want to capture or a part of the transcript with its text-based video editing feature. This helps you isolate and attach your thoughts to specific parts of the meeting easily.
The highlights captured can be, in turn, combined to create a meeting summary.
Otter.ai, on the other hand, is suitable for individuals and teams, regardless of whether or not their meetings are work-related.
All these apps we have looked at have really cool features that distinguish them from Otter.ai and similar apps. But the decision on which is a good fit for you and your team is up to you.
However, we have a few pointers on what things you should consider before making your decision. On your team end, you should consider your team size and constitution, technical expertise, goals, and budget. On the app side, look closely at the interface, features, pricing, language options, customer support, and integrations.
Putting all these into consideration will help you choose what works best for your team – instead of simply settling for what is popular.