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Managing Groups in Google Apps

BetterCloud Monitor

July 24, 2012

3 minute read

General Google Apps Blue

This post is part of Google Apps Admin Awareness Month, our month-long series where we spotlight a different tip for Google Apps administrators every day in July. Have a tip to share with your peers or have you always wondered how to do something in Google Apps? Let us know on Twitter @bettercloud.

Google Apps Group Management
As an administrator, using Group Management in your Google Apps domain is an important tool to keep the asset sharing process as transparent as possible. In Google Apps’ native Control Panel, you can manage who can access groups from outside of your domain, who can create groups and you can even set email permissions for any group. Group management controls helps administrators restrict Google Group owners from sharing private company documents externally without having to verify the sharing settings on every document created in the group.

How do I configure group management settings?
For basic Group Management, visit the Settings tab in the Google Apps Control Panel (here’s our guide to the Control Panel). Click on ‘Google Groups for Business’ in the left column and under ‘Sharing Options’ you will see several policies to choose from. These options set permissions at the highest level – for example, if you select “Private” in the “Access to groups” category, no group created on your domain can be shared publicly. Conversely, if you select “Public on the Internet,” individual group owners can select whether or not they would like the group to be private or public.

Adding users to a group
To add members to Groups, select the “Groups” tab in the Control Panel. Unfortunately, you can only add users to one group at a time. We’ve found that many Google Apps administrators find this functionality very frustrating.

That’s why when we created FlashPanel, our Google Apps management tool, it was an easy decision to build in-depth group management features, including the ability to add users to multiple groups (up to 50) at one time. This makes the user-onboarding process significantly easier. To add a users to groups in FlashPanel, select an individual user and then select “Groups.” You can then add that user to multiple groups by clicking the gear icon in the right corner.

FlashPanel also allows you to remove any user from all groups with one click.

Additionally, FlashPanel makes managing nested Groups a very intuitive process. Nested groups, if you’re not familiar with them, can make onboarding a new user much easier. For instance, if you have “BetterCloud New York” with nested groups for each department – Sales, Marketing, Operations and so on, you can add a new employee to the New York Marketing group and simultaneously add them to the “BetterCloud New York” group on the back-end. To use nested groups, visit a specific group’s summary page, then select “Add to group” under nested groups. You can then search for the group you wish to nest and click apply.

Why Should I Manage Group Settings?
Using Groups in Google Apps can facilitate communication among your users and managing your organization’s groups from the beginning is a proactive way of maintaining a high level of security for your domain. Plus, the added functionality provided by FlashPanel makes the user-onboarding process significantly more efficient.

To install FlashPanel, visit the Google Apps Marketplace today.

About Google Apps Admin Awareness Month

Google Apps Admin Awareness Month At BetterCloud, we’ve seen first hand the impact Google Apps can have on a business: extreme cost cutting, streamlined management processes, enhanced collaboration and mobility and much more.

During our time as an independent software provider focused 100% on the Google Apps platform, we’ve interacted with thousands of organizations using Google Apps and realized that so many helpful features of the platform go unused by administrators.

This July, we’re devoting the BetterCloud blog to educating Google Apps administrators on the wide array of tips, tricks and features available in the platform. These features not only add crucial functionality, but save you time and effort!