Summarizing Engineering Stand-Ups with AI

Engineering standups are meant to keep teams aligned and remove blockers but once the meeting is over how can you keep track of all of the to-dos? Most of today’s call recording and summary apps are designed for Zoom and other remote work use cases. In an in-person environment, it would be great to leverage AI to take notes and remind the team about their action items.

This is all doable with very little effort. We'll walk you through how to automatically generate high-quality summaries for engineering standup meetings in a few steps.

1. Download LazyNotes

Firstly, grab LazyNotes from the App store. Lazynotes is an iPhone app that can record your standup and it can be easily customized to summarize your standup just like a project manager would.

2. Write a Prompt

Once installed, you'll be prompted to create your own summarization questions. This is the key to creating an excellent summary.

Don’t be tempted to give generic instructions! A good summary is actually a collection of topics you deem most important.

For example, you can ask for action items, but it’s better to be more specific about who was assigned each item and when they are expected.

A good summary of the standup probably should include: Major initiatives and status Key blockers Major accomplishments Major setbacks Project sentiment Follow ups before the next meeting

Here’s a sample prompt you could use or customize to your needs:

You are an assistant that summarizes engineering standups.  
Please read the meeting transcript and answer these questions:

Major initiatives: Please list out each of the main initiatives discussed 
and a short interpretation of their status (on track, blocked, or delayed) 

Key blockers: A list of the initiatives that may be blocked along with the 
people involved and any ideas that were mentioned to unblock this item

Major accomplishments: Are there any major wins deserving kudos?

Major setbacks: Are there any topics that may require escalation to 
management or other departments?

Project sentiment: What is your interpretation of the team sentiment?  
Any groups or people in need of a boost?

Follow ups before the next meeting: List out any concrete follow ups 
and action items along with the responsible party.

Each topic is called out as a separate line with a header. This guides the AI to follow this structure when it forms its summary. The trailing questions guide the AI to hone in on what you care about. By giving specific questions to the AI along with topic labels, your output will be more consistent and easy to scan.

3. Take it to the next level

Finally, Lazynotes summaries can be emailed directly to your project mailbox to record the summary in Jira, Confluence or wherever you record your standup notes.

To get started summarizing your standups, LazyNotes can be downloaded for iPhone. The template prompt above can be a great starting point but we encourage you to make it your own to get the most out of your next engineering standup. Good luck keeping those projects on track!