Collaboration Power With Google Apps

In today’s business environment, a resultant proposal, legal document or any numerous pieces of information produced through knowledge work is a product of collaboration.  Today, more than ever, knowledge work requires inputs and approvals from internal stakeholders and external customers and vendors.

As documents, appointments and emails are passed between a complex matrix of relationships, holding bins and technologies, Google Enterprise Applications simplifies the process of knowledge work through its provision of Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) to enable a rich set of collaboration tools.

Contextual Data

Much of the elegance in the Google approach to knowledge work lies in the simplistic presentation with sophisticated underpinnings.  Data is presented in a fashion which minimizes button clicks and maximizes context and meaning.  With its client-side rich functionality using AJAX, there is drag and drop functionality within the browser environment and an interaction in real-time for work to be done anywhere, anytime.

As email communications continue to go back and forth between people, threading of views help the reader contextualize past communications.

In the calendar view, relational functionality such as maps give the user a logical suggestion for helping to find location, along with the timing.

Documents become a rich source of knowledge sharing and a repository of building organizational resources for moving knowledge forward.


The calendaring system of Google Apps has been designed beyond personal consumption.  Sharing is controlled from the user’s settings and can be finely tuned to accommodate the business rule desired.  Multiple calendar views as well as team calendars can be turned on and off with an overlay view quickly.  Setting appointments for others is easy along with changing time and details.
Google’s Calendar Sync enables real-time updates of mobile devices for knowledge workers in the field.  As dates and events continue to move, both the process of inputting data as well as viewing dates is easy to accomplish.


Creating and distributing word processing, spreadsheet and PowerPoint documents online is both simple and streamlined.  Sharing with others as viewers or collaborators creates control with visibility.  Sharing can be given or rescinded quickly within and outside an organization.

The opportunity to create knowledge resources without a tight organizational structure plays to the Google approach to search.  Let data reside everywhere and organize it through search.

Documents can be worked on in real-time and revision history is captured through a process known as mashups.  Google’s technology manages document changes through its revisioning process.  Reverting to old documents can be easily accomplished.

Documents are positioned for their final destination of distribution through email, pdf or a web page.  All functions are done elegantly within the context of the specific Google Document.

As documents continue to grow, they enrich the knowledge base of the respective organization.  Workers across the enterprise can access the knowledge they require for executing their jobs.


Intranets and Extranets

Google Sites is a configurable website which any user can create to organize projects, communications and groups.  With a simple drag and drop and wizard interface, users can set up new websites quickly.  Permissions and notifications are granted quickly and easily to give insiders and outsiders access.

For a customer experience, a company can create an experience of visibility into the project management process.  Furthermore, Google Sites are completely searchable with Google technology.

Google Sites offer rapid organization with an elegant presentation for permission-based work.  Collaboration is the centerpiece of this tool set.



As a platform, Google’s SaaS approach to application usage helps organizations position their data for collaboration.  The steps between sharing and the control of information are accomplished with the optimal balance of control and distribution.  End users become contributors to the collective effort of the organization in building and driving knowledge.

In a world of increasing speed and complexity, the Google Enterprise Application suite focuses on change and change management.  Data is controlled from a central source and ready for change and reconfiguration.

Organizations who adopt this strategic SaaS technology are enabling a workforce focused more on results and less on individual silo thinking.  Google Enterprise Applications offers a foundation of collaboration power in an integrated and well thought out architecture.

Published by Don Dalrymple

I partner with founders and entrepreneurs in startup businesses. I write and consult on strategy, systems, team building and growing revenue.

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