Shared drives give groups of people that use Google Workspace entry to a typical set of recordsdata and eliminates the necessity to test the Share settings for particular person recordsdata.

Hand drawn Google Drive logo, with large Shared drive icon below it with arrow from the icon to text: 5 Tips!

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Practically all editions of Google Workspace Enterprise, Training, and Enterprise editions offer you and your workforce entry to Shared drives. (Word: Enterprise Starter lacks Shared Drives). Shared drives are a good way for a bunch of individuals to work with recordsdata and folders, with out the necessity to share entry to every particular person merchandise.

In my work with organizations that use Google Workspace, although, I discover that few use Shared drives as a lot as I would love. In hopes of encouraging extra individuals to make use of Shared drives, listed below are the 5 Shared drive ideas that individuals at organizations that use Google Workspace ought to know.

SEE: Google Sheets: Suggestions and tips (free PDF) (eBioPic)

1. Staff recordsdata ought to be on a Shared drive

For group work, a file on a shared drive is best than a file shared with different individuals from My Drive (Determine A). Information on a shared drive are “owned” by the shared drive, somewhat than by whoever created the file. For instance, a file you create on My Drive, then share with others, continues to be owned by you. In distinction, a file that you just create on a Shared drive is owned by the Shared drive and is mechanically accessible to each different one that is a member of that Shared drive.

Determine A 

Screenshot cropped to show the Google Drive logo, the +New button, Priority, My Drive, and Shared drives menu options (all in the upper left corner of Google Drive in Chrome).

Google Workspace works effectively when individuals use a Shared drive for recordsdata. Information on a Shared drive can be found to all individuals with entry to the shared drive.

2. Shared drive Managers: Make most members Contributors 

I like to recommend that almost all members of a Shared Drive be configured as Contributors (Determine B). The Contributor position permits individuals so as to add and edit recordsdata, however doesn’t enable them to maneuver or delete recordsdata. After all, if you wish to prohibit entry even additional, you’ll be able to add members as Commenters (which lets individuals solely view and touch upon recordsdata) or Viewers (which gives view-only entry). Nonetheless, Commenter and Viewer roles are somewhat restrictive and stop individuals from including content material.

Determine B

Screenshot of the Manage member screen, with an individual added and the Viewer, Commenter, Contributor, Content manager, and Manager permission options displayed. The Contributor option is selected.

When a Shared drive Supervisor provides individuals, most ought to obtain Contributor entry, which lets individuals add and edit recordsdata. Content material managers and managers moreover might transfer or delete recordsdata.

Why not make everybody a Content material Supervisor or Supervisor? Too usually, individuals with these permissions might rearrange folders and recordsdata on a Shared drive to swimsuit their private preferences, with out realizing that their adjustments have an effect on the construction of the Shared drive for all members of the shared drive. When you’re a Shared drive Supervisor, think twice earlier than you give anybody both a Supervisor or Content material supervisor position.

3. Use completely different Shared drives for various groups and tasks

Create a Shared drive not just for every completely different workforce of individuals, but in addition for distinct tasks. The necessity for a unique Shared drive for every completely different workforce could also be apparent; since solely members of a Shared drive can entry the Shared drive, you may want a separate Shared drive for every distinct set of people that want shared entry to recordsdata. 

Moreover, I like to recommend you additionally create a separate Shared drive for main and/or distinct tasks, as effectively. For instance, you would possibly use a Shared drive for consumer/buyer file, a separate Shared drive for administrative recordsdata, a separate Shared drive for a brand new pilot undertaking, and so on.

4. Transfer recordsdata from My Drive to a Shared drive

After getting created Shared drives and added members to Shared drives, chances are you’ll move files from particular person My Drive storage to a Shared Drive. Since completely different recordsdata could also be owned by completely different individuals, every individual in your workforce that owns recordsdata utilized by the workforce might have to maneuver recordsdata to the Shared drive. Typically, I recommend individuals transfer recordsdata methodically, and confirm that objects have transferred as anticipated.

Google gives not less than 4 methods to maneuver folders and recordsdata right into a Shared drive:

  1. Drag-and-drop recordsdata from My Drive to the Shared drive.
  2. Choose recordsdata, then select the three-vertical dot menu and Transfer to the Shared drive (Determine C).
  3. Add recordsdata or folders out of your native drive.
  4. When you use Google Drive for desktop, drag-and-drop recordsdata out of your native drive to a Shared drive.

Determine C 

Screenshot of Google Drive with three files selected (Doc, Sheet, and Slide), and the Drive menu displayed, with Shared drives selected.

As soon as individuals have Contributor (or larger) entry to a Shared drive, they might transfer recordsdata from My Drive or their native system to the Shared drive. For instance, choose recordsdata, then use the Transfer to menu choice, as proven, to maneuver objects to a Shared drive.

5. Create new recordsdata on the Shared drive

While you navigate to a Shared drive in Chrome on the internet, chances are you’ll then use the +New choice to create a new Google Doc, Sheet, Slide, Drawing, Type and so forth, inside that Shared drive (Determine D). New objects you create this manner are mechanically accessible to the opposite members of the Shared drive. When you get within the behavior of including new recordsdata to your Shared drive, you’ll reduce the necessity to transfer recordsdata from My Drive to your Shared drive at a later time. Moreover, you may additionally cut back the necessity to use the Share button, since workforce members will have already got entry as members of the Shared drive.

Determine D 

Screenshot of Google Drive in Chrome, open to a Shared drive, just after the +New button has been selected. Menu of options displays: +Folder, File upload, Folder upload, Google Docs - Blank document option highlighted, signaling a new Doc about to be created in the Shared drive.

On the net, for those who navigate to your Shared drive in your browser, chances are you’ll use the +New button to create new recordsdata immediately inside the Shared drive. This stuff will mechanically be accessible to different members of the Shared drive.

How do you and your workforce use Shared drives?

How do you resolve when a brand new Shared drive is required versus when to easily add a brand new folder to an current Shared drive? What kinds of recordsdata do you retain on My Drive? How did you make the transition from recordsdata on My Drive to recordsdata on a Shared drive? Let me know the way you and your workforce use Shared drives, both with a remark under or on Twitter (@awolber). 

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