For years, we used a paper-based system. If a department needed access to one of the records, it would be copied and couriered to them through interoffice mail, which could take three to four days. In addition, we had one Excel spreadsheet to track how the grants were allocated. The problem was that not all departments could get access to the spreadsheet, making it difficult to monitor and update information. The whole process was outdated and time intensive.
In 2010, the City made the switch to Google Apps. Almost immediately, I helped create a spreadsheet for each department to track their grants. With Google Docs, spreadsheets live in the cloud, so our department heads could update them at any time. Now our grant managers can see the status of each grant in real-time. The best part about Google Docs is that we can share important grant information electronically and no longer have to rely on interoffice mail. This has saved time and money as well.
With Google Apps, we have improved the way we track the resources that are truly the backbone of our city.