Google Wave for the Virtual Office

by Jesse on October 1, 2009

google_wave_logoWell, we’ve had our invites to Google Wave for a little over 12 hours now and although I may have slept for part of that time I have had some vision for ways that LangfordSevier can integrate this service into our virtual office.

Collaboration: This is the obvious one here, being able to work together on a document at the same time has a crazy, almost whiteboard feel to it. Although, like Jacinta, I feel strange everytime I see someone erase what they’ve written. So far document collaboration has been the only thing I’ve looked at so I can’t really comment on how to shuffle other media like video and web widgets. I catch myself thinking that for Wave to be fully utilized all members of the party need to be in the wave (note capital W while referring to the application and a lowercase w when referring to the individual wave) at the same time, but actually it works great when others are absent. If you missed something just hit the playback button and watch your teams creativity blossom.

CRM: Using wave as a way to keep a live snapshot of where we are with all of our clients is really exciting. Each client could have their own wave that we can keep track of where we are with them but all of those waves can be compiled into a master wave that gives us a quick overview of all of our clients as well as their current status. I know that there are amazing free CRM applications out there but this is a solution that lives within Google and I can see myself logging into this way more often that say Zoho CRM.

Conference Calling: Although this isn’t fully integrated yet it’s not hard to see the potential here. Being able to click a button and have all of the user’s phones ring to start the meeting is simply awesome. We also know that Google Voice will be linked to this in the near future. I know that there are other services out there that do this but again this is all in one place, that’s the kind of efficiency gains that a virtual office can revel in.

Time Tracking: Having the ability to not only track your own time for projects but share that data with a collaborator is pretty great. On top of that you can let the client in on the feed so they can watch their bill rack up while you work, keeping them in the loop not only shows that you are working on their project but they won’t be surprised when they get the final bill. I know that you can do this through spreadsheets, email or time tracking software but again having all of this in one place… are you seeing a trend here.

This is only a sample of what this new medium can be used for and it certainly will constantly change. With the additions of extensions and widgets it will constantly gain functionality. I feel that this tool we be used as a traditional social media platform where friends can quickly share information and interact, but I also feel that this tool will be effectively used by business to supplement the virtual office. Needless to say, Jacinta and I will be using it and we will fill you in with our thoughts and impressions.

About the author

Jesse Sevier wrote 18 articles on this blog.

  • http://www.facebook.com/senderok Senderok Allen

    The two of you along with Robert Scoble and Louis Gray have done an excellent job informing the public in a manner that Google simply did not succeed at. Kudos.

    Next post, if you can, please take on the issue of spammers possibly crashing their waves on everyone's beach.

    While the CRM aspect can heavily reduce Email overload because client waves would be ranked in priority (my company's virtual VIP folders don't yet group automatically by contact but rather by Email), I wouldn't want multiple people or even one person hanging on real time IM replies from me.

    I have always disliked IM because the other person tends to get insulted if you don't answer back ASAP. Multiple open IMs sounds like Dante's vision of Hades…but it might work as long as one can pretend not to be at one's desk.

  • Bill4Time

    I'm not so sure how appealing it would be for the freelancer to have their client watch the billable hours go by on the feed, but I could be wrong.

  • http://www.qualitywriter.com phildunn

    Thanks for this… I've been digesting 3rd pty impressions of Wave today – bc I didn't get the invite. Sounds like they've hit a sweet spot with collaboration. Would love hear more about how you're using this for CRM. I've been tinkering with the new Salesforce low-end solution for small biz and Batchbook. Neither of which I can get to work the way I'd like. Wave could be a seamless integration of gmail contacts and CRM.

  • http://www.LangfordSevier.com Jesse

    I was actually thinking of this functionality more as a thing they would check in with. I know in our experience our clients like to be kept in the loop about how many hours we’re charging and where we are in the project, usually this is handled through email or over the phone but with Wave and the customization of what feeds are visible by who we could easily give them the information they need while keeping the rest to ourselves.

  • Bill4Time

    I'm not so sure how appealing it would be for the freelancer to have their client watch the billable hours go by on the feed, but I could be wrong.

  • http://www.qualitywriter.com phildunn

    Thanks for this… I've been digesting 3rd pty impressions of Wave today – bc I didn't get the invite. Sounds like they've hit a sweet spot with collaboration. Would love hear more about how you're using this for CRM. I've been tinkering with the new Salesforce low-end solution for small biz and Batchbook. Neither of which I can get to work the way I'd like. Wave could be a seamless integration of gmail contacts and CRM.

  • http://www.ringcentral.com Virtual office voip pbx

    I have tried Google wave but I haven't explored it too much. I know it is a good virtual office but I don't what happened to wave why is that others are not buying to us it. It almost have all the features.

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