My Google Docs Delivery Workflow
Over the years, I have worked with quite a number of clients of clients in Google Docs. As a Linux user, I generally prefer using Google Docs to Microsoft Office (less cross-platform compatibility glitches).
However, at the same time, it brings with it some challenges. Like many writers, I find it hard to do my best work when other users are ‘live’ in the document. Additionally, revision controls becomes very difficult when several people are commenting on, leaving suggested changes in, and directly editing a document in real time.
I have developed a methodology that I think strikes a good balance between the advantages of traditional static document editing (with tracked changes for following revisions) and the speed and agility of Google Docs. It requires only minor modifications on the part of those involved in creating a document with it.
Here are the steps involved.
1. I Will Share A Folder With Your Team
Firstly, I populate my client folders in Google Docs from a template.I create shared and ‘not shared’ folders like this
You: Please provide a list of all the users in your organization that will need access to the Google Docs I create. It’s better to err on the side of adding whatever individuals you think might require access; permissions can be removed (or added) on a document-by-document basis.
Given that sharing permissions recurse through subdirectories, it’s easiest to add them up front at this level.
2. You Can Share The Folder With Your Client (For Agencies)
If you want to share the resources to anybody with the link — and understand the security implications — then I can also enable that sharing permission.
3. I Will Share the Finished Draft With You
After each draft is finished — beginning with the first — I will copy it into the shared folder. If this is an ongoing project I will organize the shared folder with yy/mm subfolders.
Once the piece has been moved in I will notify you via the email collaborators functionality, or via my CRM, that it is ready for your review.
4. Collect Feedback and Let Me Know
Now the ball is in your court.
Please organize internally to collect the feedback from whatever stakeholders you deem necessary.
When you have finished leaving comments and tracked changes please let me know.
I will then copy the documents — with suggestions and changes — back into my unshared folder.
There, I will be able to action your changes while you will not be able to access the updated draft in progress.
5. Repeat Iteratively
The process repeats iteratively until the final draft is arrived at.