This is a guest post by Vince Nero.
If you are not using Google Applications right now, you are not using your computer to its full potential.
No matter what kind of work you perform, there is a Google App or add-on that will streamline your efforts and improve productivity.
What Are Google Applications?
Google Applications are entirely free cloud-based services that automatically synchronize data, making them ideal for working across computers or on projects with others.
These ubiquitous Google Applications allow you to access email, adjust your schedule, live video chat with multiple people and much more.
What Is “Google Docs”?
Google Applications have an array of free software applications comparable to the MS office suite — Google Docs, Google Sheets, and Google Slides are similar to Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. However, because they are entirely cloud based, they are perfectly situated for allowing more than one person to work on a project.
In fact, (unlike in MS Word, for example) an unlimited number of collaborators can work on one document or spreadsheet simultaneously. They can also comment on each other’s work and instant message in real time. And there are other benefits as well.
Within Google Docs, for example, are a number of protocols and tools (the infographic below calls them “Hacks”) to allow for projects to run more efficiently.
Collaborative hacks include the ability to assign tasks to specific team members and to recover earlier versions of documents quickly and easily with the “revision history” tool.
Though this is a cloud-based application, one can still work on documents offline and there is also simply conversion from MS Word documents to Google Docs (and back), if necessary. Working within these applications is designed to be intuitive and simple.
What Are Google Add-ons?
In addition to the standard set of tools designed for Google users, an ever-growing set of Google Add-ons allow a user to customize their individual experience and use assets that specifically assist them in a particular work environment.
Add-ons include formatting tools for documents that improve internal consistency and those that allow for simple charts and graphs to be included.
Other add-on tools are exterior facing.
Uberconference, for example, allows you to make Google conference calls while you’re working.
Also, there is an add-on called HelloFax that gives a user the ability to send faxes as necessary (up to 5 pages for free at a time) without needing a fax machine.
Worried about creating official documents? There are add-ons to create and store signatures and then encrypt them (or any other sensitive information) so that only the readers you want will be able to read or see them.
There are applications and add-ons for every aspect of a collaborative work schedule and if your fingers get tired of typing about them, you can always use a talk to type feature that takes very accurate dictation.
Taking time in the short run to familiarize yourself with the applications and add-ons that are right for your workflow will save you an immeasurable amount of effort in the future and give you “hacks” to improve the rest of your life as well.
What Google applications are you using?