I attended Google’s big Cloud Next ‘19 Conference in San Francisco this April and took notes on the exciting news to come out of the conference that nonprofit organizations should know about.
Before getting into the biggest news, releases or keynotes, or some of the 500 breakout sessions talks and hands-on labs—let’s talk about some of the broader themes.
The biggest topics this year were:
- Increases to productivity and collaboration tools
- Robust hybrid clouds
- Machine learning and automation of workflows
- Expanding growth of Partnerships
- Expansion of community and open source products.
“It’s not about the cloud working backward, it’s about the realities of the environment that all of our customers live in today. We want open ecosystems the people around us can embrace and extend.” —David Goeckeler, Cisco
Multihosted, multi-platform, multi-cloud, and hybrid clouds are already prevalent, and are going to continue to be prevalent in the future. Many organizations want to develop and deploy their applications anywhere—onsite, in the public cloud, or in multiple public clouds—seamlessly and securely. Using orchestration tools like Kubernetes with built-in machine learning allows for getting code up and running even more quickly and more securely.
Google introduced Anthos (formerly Cloud Services Platform), featuring a unified framework and machine learning functionality. Anthos will also let you manage workloads and orchestrate third-party clouds like AWS and Azure, giving you the freedom to deploy, run and manage your applications on the cloud of your choice, without requiring administrators and developers to learn different environments and APIs.
Big ol’ enhancements have also come to BigQuery! BigQuery is Google’s serverless, highly-scalable cloud data warehouse with an in-memory Business Intelligence (BI) Engine and machine learning built in, resulting in sub-second query response times and high concurrency.
Salesforce and other Google Partners have also stepped up their game this year! A set of new tools enhancing existing Google products and workflows, incorporate machine learning and increasing Google’s partnerships with Salesforce—including direct integrations with Drive, Analytics, and more. Here are some of the new solutions your organization should take advantage of:
- Salesforce Lightning for Gmail
- Data Connectors for Salesforce to Google Sheets and other Suite products
- Salesforce Lightning for Google Calendar and Contacts (provides a realtime sync from your Google Calendar to Salesforce)
- Saleseforce Files Connect for Google Drive (allows you to share files, sheets, docs, slides, images and more to specific Salesforce account, customer contact, or opportunities)
- Google Analytics 360 and Salesforce Connect (allows you to seamlessly connect metrics and audiences across Salesforce Sales Cloud, Salesforce Marketing Cloud, and Google Analytics 360)
Additional announcements revolved around productivity, security, and storage.
- Google is rolling out their Cloud Filestore product, as well as a low cost “Archive” class of ice-cold cloud storage
- Move your entire SQL workload to google cloud with Cloud SQL, including coming support for Microsoft SQLServer, Postgre, etc.
- Traffic Director released Cloud Smart Analytics which enhances cloud reporting
- A new AI Platform to take machine learning-based products live! The platform includes direct integrations to their new beta Contact Center to assist Live Agents with recommendations in real time (thanks to speech recognition and search technology from Google) about knowledge sources that can help resolve customer issues more quickly and helpfully.
- G-Suite will begin supporting community Add-Ons to enhance the functionality of Docs, Gmail, Calendar and more.
- Google Drive now supports Metadata, defined and constructed for assets to create custom categorizations, taxonomy and better workflow in Google Drive. It will also support improvement guest access, file converters, with even more features to be added to G-Suite products.
So what does this mean for nonprofits? Simply put, it means that Google has made a ton of improvements that can help simplify business processes so that nonprofit organizations can continue to do more, with less.
Geof Landgraf is our Senior Analytics Architect here at Zuri Group. Google Certified, he’s also a developer on opensource platforms like WordPress, Drupal, CiviCRM, Magento/Prestashop, and premium platforms like Luminate Online, Sphere and NetCommunity. This blend of technical knowledge and online fundraising expertise coupled with his strong SEO/SEM background provides an invaluable resource to many Zuri clients looking for a cohesive digital strategy that includes impactful content, increased visitor conversions, and an improved user experience.