Running your independent insurance agency on Google Apps for Work keeps operational costs down and allows agents and support teams to communicate more effectively. In part one and two of this series, I walked through the product suite’s communication and storage apps. Now it’s all about collaboration tools: Docs, Sheets, Forms, and Slides.
Docs is word processing for teams. With traditional software, it’s cumbersome to collaborate on a document. Each time you make edits you have to give the file a new name and then send it to the next collaborator. Even if there are only two people working on the document, you waste a lot of time sending files back and forth. Google Docs makes it easy to create and edit text documents right in your browser without dedicated software. And this means you can work on files wherever you are on most any device -- not just your computer at work. Pro tip: Use “suggest edits” to recommend edits to the document owner without affecting the original text.
Working on your agency’s sales pipeline? With Sheets you can do everything from simple task lists to data analysis with charts, filters and pivot tables. And just like Google Docs, it’s right there in your browser. Import files you created in Microsoft Office and export to a variety of file formats including .xlsx, .csv, .html, .ods, .pdf and .txt form.
Checking in with clients and getting feedback is easy using Forms. Create a survey and you’ll see the responses in real time. You can even access the raw data and analyze it with Google Sheets or other software. Give people who respond a great survey experience by adding images and video.
Do you have a presentation coming up and need team members to contribute? There’s no hassle with version control using Slides. Everyone can edit the presentation at the same time. You control who gets permission to edit, view or just add comments.
Google Apps for Work offers two plans including unlimited storage and Google Vault. Each plan can be purchased monthly or annually. Google Drive includes 30GB of storage. If that’s not enough, you can pay $10/month for unlimited storage. Accounts with fewer than 5 users get 1TB per user.