A move to Google Apps and Drive helps BuzzFeed store, manage and share all the different types of content and information they get from sources around the world.
Justine Bienkowski, IT Team Lead, BuzzFeed, said:
BuzzFeed is a content-heavy company—from our popular list posts to in-depth news features to lifestyle surveys, GIFs and videos, we have something for everyone. As our founder, Jonah Peretti, likes to say, our publishing is a lot like a Paris cafe: you may be sitting around reading a philosophy book or something equally mentally stimulating, but if you see a cute dog under the table next to you, you’re still going to want to pet it and enjoy that interaction. People are a lot more complex and multidimensional than liking just one or the other: as with everything, a balance is important.
In order to be able to manage that steady stream of material and get that balance, we need a platform that keeps us organized and helps us collaborate (because sometimes it takes a team to collect the 40 greatest dog GIFs of all time). That’s where Google Apps comes into play.
Each day, our team shares, submits and receives over 400 ideas for posts, which come from our editors, our reporters, and our community, and come in all sorts of formats, from .docx, and .zip to .jpg to .mpeg. And no matter the file type or source, we use Drive to store the constant flow of material and ideas, so we can stay organized and the right people can access them from one central place. When an editor receives a proposal or piece they know is perfect for a certain group, they’ll drop it into a Drive folder and share it with the appropriate email alias.
My IT team relies on Drive to share all sorts of documents, spreadsheets and other files. I receive vendor price quotes throughout the week, typically as PDFs, which I store in a shared folder with my group so they can review and comment on them whenever they have the time. We use Drive for important work functions like setting up new hires — what equipment & software they need as well as what email aliases they need to be added to. We use Drive to keep track of inventory in the office as well, so if I need to reference a software key and compare it to an invoice, I have everything where I need it. The Drive mobile app allows me to access all my files when I’m away from my laptop, saving time and encouraging efficiency within the team; just the other night, I received an updated floor plan for our office, which I was able to pull up and approve without having to run home, find and boot up my laptop.
The Google Apps suite as a whole makes us work better and also nurtures the culture we pride ourselves on (you can probably tell from our listicles that we like to have fun—did you see what happened when a member of our edit team accidentally emailed the whole company recently?). BuzzFeed’s editorial team organized a Jorts Week celebration in honor of the revival of the mid-70s uber-short jean shorts, and employees voted for team activities and customized their jorts designs with Forms and tracked jorts sizes in Sheets. The editorial team similarly used Forms to collect submissions for our “What Secrets You Want to Tell Your Mother” feature for Mother’s Day.
From an IT perspective, another major strength of being on the Google platform is the marketplace of third-party tools that make systems management so much easier. We use FlashPanel by BetterCloud to streamline Google Apps management and add security to our Apps domain. We can prompt employees to reset passwords on a regular basis, see which third-party applications people have installed and view publicly shared Drive documents to make sure nothing is public that shouldn’t be.
With Google Drive, we have an easy, reliable way to store, manage and share all the different types of content and information we get from sources around the world. And with the full Apps suite, our editorial team can focus on publishing even more great content while my IT team can focus on giving our company the best tools for their jobs. Google helps us to turn that raw material into the amusing, provocative and quirky posts that make people laugh, cry and keep coming back for more.
Story courtesy of Google Enterprise blog