What is G suite and Why You Should Consider Using it
To maximise best business practice and make full use of individual and departmental resources a company needs collaborative tools. In the past, many SMEs took Office 365 as the de-facto standard for such collaboration, but more businesses than ever before are waking up to the real benefits of G Suite.
Here’s what is on offer from the product formerly known as Google Apps for Work:
A comprehensive combination:
G Suite takes and combines all of the productivity and collaboration tools Google has to offer and presents them in an all-on-one suite. This excellent package gives universal access across business teams through the following apps:
- Google Docs, Sheets, Forms & Slides
These apps are governed through the Google Admin Console and Google Vault:
- Google Admin Console: Businesses can add users, manage connected devices and configure security settings. Appointed administrators have the ability to add/remove users, set up groups, establish verification steps and SSO (single sign on) all from one console. The console also allows mobile device management to facilitate employee BYOD (bring your own device) requirements with the ability to implement company security policies on iOS and Android devices.
- Google Vault: Gives the ability for users to search, export and archive on a company’s email system as well as maintaining ‘on-the-record’ chats for reporting and auditing purposes.
Let’s take a look at some of the chief benefits G Suite has to offer:
Gmail has been in existence since 2004 and is currently the most popular email client on the planet. From a personal point of view, many of your employees will already be familiar with this email client, so migration to G Suite will be a natural progression. The benefit of Gmail for business is that employees will have an enhanced, advert free e-mail platform which includes their own Gmail account. Each individual will have an email address that includes your company domain name – i.e. firstname.lastname@example.org.
Keeping schedules organised is the sign of a successful business. Once your colleagues begin to use the calendar feature you will be amazed at how quickly this becomes an essential tool. It can be used for a whole host of activities and viewing by others can be managed as per internal rules.
Some popular examples being:
- Schedule client calls
- Set due dates
- Identify and alert reminders for important project stages
- Schedule internal ad-hoc or regular meetings with colleagues
- Alert individuals or departments relating to due dates of reports – i.e. weekly/monthly
Collaboration and the sharing of information is yet another must for any company wishing to exploit business opportunities to the full and Google Drive is the ideal platform for this.
It allows you to share, store and access data in one secure place. Once a file is placed on the drive it can easily be accessed from any device.
When compared with the free version and its associated personal drive the paid version of Google Drive gives twice the storage, Gmail, around the clock support, sharing controls and advanced reporting features.
The G Suite Basic plans offer 30GB of storage for each employee, while the G Suite Business, Enterprise and Teams editions provide unlimited storage.
Google Drive offers superb, wide-ranging search functionality allowing you to drill down and find the files or information you are looking for quickly and efficiently.
Google Docs & Google Sheets:
These two features of G Suite will rapidly become the norm for employee collaboration and sharing of information.
They will allow you to create and edit documents and spreadsheets straight from your browser. Documents can be imported, exported and be available for instant editing. This includes:
- Microsoft word documents
- Excel spreadsheets
- PDF files
It is also important to note that as of February 2018 it is possible to comment and collaborate on Microsoft Office files without the need to automatically convert them to Google’s format.
Another huge plus is the ease of which common third-party formats can be exported meaning you can collaborate with clients and partners without the need to purchase or install additional software.
In terms of storage space, it should be noted that any files created directly in Google Docs and Spreadsheets do not count towards your storage limit.
Google Hangouts Chat:
Google released their new Hangouts Chat tool in February 2018. This dedicated group workspace comes with 1to1 chat as well as group chat functionality. Discussions and conversations become far more effective due to the deep integration of Google bots and 3rd party apps. ‘Chat’ comes free with all G Suite price plans.
Google Hangouts Meet:
This video call and conferencing tool ensures setting up remote discussions is simplicity itself. The tool fully integrates with G Suite meaning you can invite (or be invited) directly from an email or calendar request and then share any of the collaborative tools you wish during these online meetings.
The majority of you will have filled out a Google form before and be aware of how easy the process is.
In terms of gathering important information for your company use, Google forms makes it very straightforward to gather information required from targeted sources. This data can then be manipulated as you see fit for business benefit.
While Microsoft PowerPoint may be what you are used to seeing for presentations, do not overlook Google Slides. It offers similar benefits, is easy to learn, and allows for real-time collaboration as well as comments. It also gives unlimited version history which is an ideal way to keep track of things.
It goes without saying that mobile devices are now and integral and essential part of any business, but with the ever-increasing population of such devices comes the increased risk of them being lost or stolen.
G Suites mobile management tool will give you peace of mind. The feature is easily enabled within ‘admin’ and can remotely wipe all G Suite data from registered devices if the need arises.
G Suite WILL move your business forward:
Business vision and cohesion between colleagues, customers, partners and prospective leads should be seen as an essential part of any company’s success.
To achieve this, well-organised collaboration is an absolute must. With G Suite you get everything required to ensure this.
What is more, there is even a 14-day free trial available. This means you really have nothing to lose and everything to gain by testing the G Suite feature set to the full before making a final decision.