Tools we use A LOT: GoogleDocs

We thought it would be kind of fun to profile some of the tools that we find ourselves using on a regular basis here at SalonMonster.

We work in a distributed office with people based in various cities and thus rely a lot on our software. So, with this in mind we’ll probably mostly be profiling Mac software or Web apps, with a focus on applications that help manage our business and aid in group collaboration.

The first app that we think deserves a mention is GoogleDocs, the free online office suite from, of course, Google .

Google Docs

We use GoogleDocs on a pretty much daily basis to write lists, letters, Web page layouts, draft emails, track useful Website URLs, track stock and record random ideas, all collaboratively.

We can all work on one document at the same time or we could be working on it alone, but it always gets saved centrally, with all revision tracked. If something gets screwed up you can always go back a couple of revisions in the document – no harm done.

There is no simpler way to collaborate on a document or spreadsheet from remote locations than this.

We have to acknowledge that it sometimes concerns us that we are entrusting so much data to Google, the great indexer and searcher of everything. We don’t really think that Google is interested in our business plan or random bookmarks of great hair photos but I probably wouldn’t entrust them with anything you want kept truly truly private. Google is probably a safe bet, but with companies like Facebook changing their data privacy policies retroactively one wouldn’t be blamed for worrying.

Also, if you’re going to share a document with friends make sure you deselect the “Allow invitations to be forwarded” checkbox on the “Advance permissions” tab. Doing this will prevent people other than your friend from using the Web link created. It’s not a great risk, but it makes me sleep better knowing my documents are secure from email snoops.

Up until now the collaborative text editing on GoogleDocs was not true realtime and could sometimes take a few seconds to update but they’re now rolling out a true realtime system that should make things even better.

If you haven’t already, we’d totally recommend you check out GoogleDocs, there’s so many great uses for it.


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