Improving the Google Drive for Work experience

Many people will agree that Google Drive for Work, its unlimited storage, and its set of cloud features that come with Docs, Sheets, Slides, and Forms are a blessing to company collaboration. We agree!

Competitive tools arguably unmatch the real-time experience of collaboratively building a document using Google Docs. We love to see how drafts quickly become knowledge-rich documents as people work together.

However, even the Google Drive team will admit:

“as you put more and more files there, keeping things organized can be a bit of a challenge.”

Currently, the best way to bring order to drive is through the use of folders. But even with the use of folders, any company with more than 25 coworkers will struggle to keep track of what is official. Often, people will make copies of documents to start new ones and at any given point it’s hard to know if we found the right piece.

Smart Canvas comes to the rescue! The “Share a link” feature will automatically detect links to files in Google Drive and handle them in a special way. For instance, if you use a Google Doc URL, Smart Canvas will take the following steps with the document:

  • Check if it was already posted and if so, direct you to the post instead of allowing you to create a duplicate;
  • Check if it is already visible to the entire domain on Google Drive and if not, suggest changing its permissions;
  • Index its content so that it becomes searchable straight from Smart Canvas search tool; This alone is very helpful because you will know that if a document is visible to you inside Smart Canvas, it has already been curated from Google Drive by someone in your organization;
  • Turn it into a card, allowing you to pick an image that best represents it. Everyone will then be able to interact with the card: like it, bookmark it, follow its changes, discuss it, etc.

Here it’s important to note that commenting inside a Google Doc is most commonly used while the document is being created. Some people will even create documents where no one can comment so that it stays “clean”. By bringing it to Smart Canvas, you open it up for discussion with your audience.

  • Keep track of it: if the document changes, Smart Canvas will know and will put the card representing it back at the beginning of the timeline. It may also put it on the top of your ‘For You’ timeline if you decided to follow the document.
  • Provide extra insights about it, focusing on things that are not very visible on Google Drive.

And now that the document is inside Smart Canvas, anyone seeing it will be able to pin it to a board so that content discovery is taken to a whole new level.

The example below shows a real case inside CI&T where the analyst relations team created a board visible to all managers and up containing documents for each analyst who speaks with CI&T . After each analyst interaction, their corresponding doc is updated, which triggers Smart Canvas to notify all people following the board to see them. It is simple and very effective!

Visit and start building smarter, deeper connections and discover what you are missing inside your own organization, for free.