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Google Enterprise, Collaboration and Enterprise Mobility

I would invite anyone in an IT department buried in demand for mobile apps to first take a look at Google Enterprise http://www.google.com/enterprise/, before trying to develop everything yourself.  There are many mobile capabilities already available in the Google world which are free to individuals and available free or on a subscription basis for companies.  Here are a few of them:
  • Google Drive - Keep all your files, documents, spreadsheets, videos, photos, everything digital in a free secure cloud.  Access from any mobile or desktop device. http://youtu.be/wKJ9KzGQq0w 
  • Google+ - Strives to make sharing online, like sharing in person.  We at Cognizant have been using Google+ for many of our strategy groups and discussions.  I love it.  I use it for both work and personal.  I have specific "Circles" and "Communities" for work and personal.
  • Google Hangouts - This is a very powerful solution that let's you video chat with your team no matter where in the world they are located.  Share documents, videos, screens, presentations all while in a free Hangout.   Learn more about them here: http://www.youtube.com/embed/3pmSWh2BQco?cc_load_policy=0&hl=en&cc_lang_pref=en&autoplay=1
  • Google Hangouts On Air - Now broadcast your Hangouts -  I just recorded my first Google Hangout discussion with a group of mobility experts.  You can see it here http://youtu.be/GID7nRwhIIo, however, now you can broadcast Google Hangouts live through YouTube.  I will try that next.
  • Google Apps - I have also been doing a lot of work lately in Google Apps.  I have been collaborating with others on documents, spreadsheets and presentations through Google Apps.  Here is what I am most impressed by - you can collaborate on the same document at the same time and see exactly who is editing, and what they are editing in real-time.  Plus, you can start a Google Hangout inside a document so you can video chat with those that are editing.  See an example here - http://www.google.com/enterprise/solutions.html
  • Enterprise Controls - Google is rapidly adding enterprise controls to all of their solutions.  These enable you to integrate with enterprise LDAP (directories) and other things and control who is viewing particular documents and who is joining or able to join different "Circles" in Google Plus.  If you haven't read up on these enterprise controls in a while, it might be good to read this blog from Google - http://googleenterprise.blogspot.co.uk/2012/08/bringing-google-to-work.html.
I am a mobility analyst among other things, so I am always looking at these apps with enterprise mobility in mind.  All of the solutions and features mentioned above are already mobile enabled.  They already run on my iPhone, MacBook Pro and iPad mini.  I don't have to build any apps to get all of these enterprise social and mobile capabilities!

I am also a SMAC Analyst (social, mobile, analytics and cloud), so when I wear that hat, I am interested in how these Google Enterprise solutions are all deeply social and collaboration enabled, mobile, include analytics and all reside in the cloud.

Many companies are years behind and slow to support emerging technologies like mobility, cloud and the social business technologies.  They assume they have to build everything or pay millions of dollars to get these features.  You don't.  They are available today and much of it is free.

In addition, most companies are made up of many small departments, committees, projects and groups.  These small organizations are often dynamic, shifting and often short-term.  They never get a budget to support their collaboration efforts and mobility needs.  Google Enterprise can go a long way toward supporting these kinds of efforts.  Just saying...
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Kevin Benedict, Head Analyst for Social, Mobile, Analytics and Cloud (SMAC) Cognizant
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Read the whitepaper on mobile, social, analytics and cloud strategies Don't Get SMACked
Learn about mobile strategies at MobileEnterpriseStrategies.com
Follow me on Twitter @krbenedict
Join the Linkedin Group Strategic Enterprise Mobility

Full Disclosure: These are my personal opinions. No company is silly enough to claim them. I am a mobility and SMAC analyst, consultant and writer. I work with and have worked with many of the companies mentioned in my articles.

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More Stories By Kevin Benedict

Kevin Benedict serves as the Senior Vice President, Solutions Strategy, at Regalix, a Silicon Valley based company, focused on bringing the best strategies, digital technologies, processes and people together to deliver improved customer experiences, journeys and success through the combination of intelligent solutions, analytics, automation and services. He is a popular writer, speaker and futurist, and in the past 8 years he has taught workshops for large enterprises and government agencies in 18 different countries. He has over 32 years of experience working with strategic enterprise IT solutions and business processes, and he is also a veteran executive working with both solution and services companies. He has written dozens of technology and strategy reports, over a thousand articles, interviewed hundreds of technology experts, and produced videos on the future of digital technologies and their impact on industries.

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