Google Drives Businesses
Google Drives Businesses with Google Apps
If you have a Gmail account, you’ve already used one of Google’s best-loved apps, but did you know that there are many more tools to be found on the world’s current favorite search engine? Many of these tools can be used to improve your business workflow, especially if you have employees who occasionally work from home or any telecommuters.
Google offers the vast majority of these services for free, plus you can establish Google Apps for your organization for up to 10 users for free as well, so that the company can manage and access all the information of the accounts. This allows you to do things like use the Gmail interface to access your work email, even using your [username]@[companyname.com] address. For larger companies, Google charges a small fee per user.
Here are some of our favorite Google apps for business productivity!
1. Google Documents
Microsoft Office, Apple’s iWork, Open Office are all great suites of productivity software. However, Google Documents has its advantages: first off, it’s free (unlike Office and iWork); second, you don’t have to download any software or wait for it to load; third, all of your documents are stored in “the cloud.”
That means that as long as you can log into your Google account, you can access all of your documents from any computer. You can reference a document a co-worker created while you’re on a business trip, work on a report while working sick from home, or collaborate on the same document from different computers at work. If you’re worried about compatibility, you can download your documents into Word, Open Office, PDF, and other formats.
2. Google Calendar
Imagine everyone having the same calendar at the same time. That’s Google Calendar in a nutshell: everyone can add their meetings, including inviting other participants (internally and externally), as well as days off, appointments, and other events so that everyone is on the same page about what’s going on. If you or your employees have Android phones, you can also sync your work calendar to your phone so you always know who’s where and where you need to be! Each user also has an individual calendar if they want to use it.
We mentioned earlier that with Google Apps, you can arrange for your employees to have access to their mail through Gmail. This doesn’t preclude the continued use of an existing mail program, like Thunderbird or Mail, but it makes your mail available on “the cloud”- which means you can check for new messages or read older ones from home or on the go (such as on a tablet or on a phone).
These are just a few of the apps available via Google, and more are always in production. For example, in the near future Google will launch Google Drive, which is a cloud-based file storage and sharing system. It will allow individuals and businesses to privately share photos and other files in addition to their documents. We’re really excited about it!
Tagged with: google apps, google apps for business, google best practices, google docs, google drive, google enterprise apps, google mail, how to use google apps