I just discovered one more useful thing about Google Apps – it’s a great tool even for non-app users. This came into play recently at my church, when collaboration was required between several different people and groups, and of course, the pastor. Our roof needed replacing, and as a small congregation, we don’t have much money. So strategy needed to be discussed, bids obtained, and decisions made. With this many people involved, several of them getting along in years, we realised that a few people would not be familiar with the more complicated computer functions.
We decided to use Google Apps and it worked like a charm. The interface is clean and simple, and the learning curve is almost non-existent. We were able to discuss our plan (try to repair the roof first; if that fails, then look toward a replacement), get professional estimates on the condition of the current roof as well as repair and/or replacement, and get input from other churches in the surrounding area. With the people on the roof task force living in different towns, I don’t think this could have been accomplished any easier than it was by using Google Apps.
Another advantage is that outside vendors who contacted us didn’t need to mail anything. A simple e-mail or scanned document and we could have it instantly, safely, and store it in the cloud where everyone on the task force had access to it. This made reviewing information and comparing bids extremely easy. Google Apps saved the day for our little church.