Many small business owners need to balance their time and technology costs to run their business. This includes issues like when do I buy a new computer? What software do I NEED? Do I really HAVE to pay that much just to write a proposal? The amount of time you spend dealing with these issues is time spent not focusing on your core business. At the end of the day, a small business owner only has so many hours in the day and must choose how to spend them wisely.
You Have Options
Multiple options are available that you may not know about! Did you know you don’t necessarily need to purchase Microsoft Office to write a letter or create a spreadsheet? Google provides free online software that runs in your web browser called “Google Docs” – all you need is a free account and an internet connection to use. You can even save your documents in the widely used file formats such as .docx and .xlxs. Everything you are working on is available from any computer and is automatically backed up in the cloud. If cloud security is an issue for you, think of this… is your home or business network more secure than Google Inc.?
You can access any of your files on your tablet or phone using the Google Drive App and when making edits to any document there is no need to hit save. This all helps with what I call “Version Control” when multiple people need access to the same document – you don’t need to worry about co-workers saving an updated version elsewhere… Not that any of the Amplify team would do such a thing…
The google apps family is available right from the Google home page and you may not have ever seen it before!
Once you are in google drive you can simply right click and get the following menu to start creating shareable documents, folders and more .
There is even a App you can download for Mac and PC that will put a Google Drive folder on your computer that automatically sync’s with the online version and any other device with that app!
Here is how/why we are using it
- We are using the paid version known as google apps
- E-mail domain hosting & control – Our @amplifyllp.ca email addresses are actually Google accounts! (Just like G-mail with all the access to Google)
- SSO (Single sign-on)
- Online calendar
- Easy setup on mobile devices
- Google Drive storage and file sharing
- YouTube account
As you can see from the videos below there are many uses, even for just a single user. The second video shows a team editing the same document while using Google Hangouts to communicate and collaborate. You don’t need the paid version to be able to do any of this except for the custom domain email (@amplifyllp.ca)
As you can see google apps are some pretty powerful tools that when used in conjunction can make your life a lot easier (for free!). Don’t be afraid to invest a little time now to get to know how to use them, it will save you both $$$ and time down the road. There are plenty of resources and “How To’s” on YouTube to get you started.
If you would like some advice on how to simplify your life using these tools, leave a comment and I would be happy to get in touch with you !
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— Kyle Turriff (@KyleTurriff) November 4, 2015