Many of us are familiar with Google Docs as a tool for quick and easy document creation. What a lot of people don’t know is how great of a collaboration tool it can be, especially due to its recent updates.
The commenting feature in Google Docs saw some significant changes this week. Some of the most substantial updates include:
- Timestamps and profile pictures on comments
- The ability to edit and resolve comments
- Implementation of email notifications via @mentions
The addition of email notifications is the thing that businesses will likely benefit from the most. These notifications allow users to invite new people into the discussion whenever they’re needed.
The notifications always include the comment associated with it so the recipient doesn’t necessarily need access to Google Docs in order to contribute. They can just reply to the email with their comments, and it will show up in the conversation thread as if they were logged in.
In addition to the email notifications, the ability to edit and resolve comments will likely be very useful. Before, Google only allowed you to delete comments once an issue had been resolved. Now, you can “resolve” the comment and it will still be available for review. Now, you can check back and make sure that everything has been completed correctly.
Collaboration tools like Google Docs make it much easier to be a part of a distributed team. Features like email alerts let your team members know immediately when you need their help. Staying in sync is not as hard with tools like these.
Passing a document back and forth via email can be very messy. If multiple people are editing at once, keeping track of all of those edits and ensuring that they show up on the final version gets difficult. With these tools, since everybody’s version of the document is identical there is far less confusion around changes. For distributed teams, and remote workers, tools like this are quite valuable.
For more insight into the recent changes to Google Docs check out this article.