Google has announced the launch of a number of new tools and features designed to facilitate collaboration between remote and face-to-face workers in the new hybrid future of work that awaits us when many employees return to their offices.
Google launched its revamped productivity suite for Google Workspace last summer
Google itself is considering a mixed work model in its offices from September this year, in which it asks its employees to be half-present in their jobs. Keeping in mind that employees in general need new collaboration tools in this mixed environment – not just their employees, but everyone in general – the company introduced a number of tools into Google Workspace that are more time consuming and better results Results work anywhere, whether in the office or at home.
These are the most important innovations that Google has announced to make collaboration in hybrid work models more efficient:
-Google Workspace Frontline. It is a new product that will be available “in the next few weeks” (Google has not confirmed the exact date) and tailored to the needs of “Frontline” workers (merchants, nurses, hotel professionals, construction workers …) and collaboration applications such as Gmail, Chat, Docs and Drive as well as security and support functions at the company level such as advanced terminal management, which help protect company data.
-Google Assistant. With the integration of Google Assistant in Google Workspace, users can use their voice to check their calendar or send an email. This is already available on mobile phones, and the beta for smart speakers and displays like Google Nest Hub is also launching.
-Fractional working hours. This feature allows users to configure their working hours by specifying different working time blocks so that their teammates know when they are online and can meet.
– Recurring absence events. They can be configured in such a way that, for example, outside of working hours, all invitations are automatically rejected if they are “away from the office”.
– Situation indicators. They allow users to specify the days they work from home and the days they stay in the office.
-Focus time. Distractions are limited so users can focus directly on their work and not receive notifications for a period of time, for example.
-Time statistics. They get stats on their time usage so they know what their main distractions are. These reports are only given to the employee and are not shown to their supervisors.
Google Meet improvements
Among the novelties presented, there are also some improvements in Google’s video conferencing tool, Google Meet, to make it easier to manage communications at work or at home.
– Second screen experiences. Meetings can be organized and presentations can be made on different devices, including functions such as chats, polls, etc., wherever you are.
– Optimization of Google Meet for mobile phones. When you think of the users who connect on the mobile phone, the new mosaic view allows you to see more people at the same time. With the split screen and picture-in-picture feature, you can chat or check your Gmail emails during the meeting.
-Improvements to the live broadcast. Real-time Q&A, polls, and captions (in English, Spanish, German, Portuguese, and French) are included in Google Meet. The tool also enables live streaming to multiple Google Workspace domains within the same company.