As part of their efforts to build the future of work, Google has provided multiple innovations to support the need for real time collaboration and social connection. In 2021, Google introduced Spaces, a dedicated place for organizing people, topics, and projects in Google Workspace. Starting in 2023, Google plans to wind down Google Currents, previously Google+, and bring remaining content and communities over to the new Spaces experience.
Tools to Support Collaboration & Communication
Google’s productivity tools (Google Docs, Sheets, Slides, Forms, etc.) facilitate collaboration, seamlessly enabling teams to work on the same document, across multiple devices, in multiple languages, in real-time—without any of the old frustrating roadblocks like emailing around attachments with perpetually increasing version numbers.
But in addition to enabling work on specific spreadsheets and documents, remote teams also need to remain socially connected. This can be particularly challenging without the opportunity for “water cooler” discussions. After the rapid shift to remote work in March 2020, many organizations continue to retain numerous remote or hybrid workers. As a result, social platforms inside of the workplace gained momentum.
Google Spaces: A Single, Connected Experience
Google tackles the challenge of people who work somewhere else staying connected and part of the same conversations as those in the office. After serving as the business function of Google+, Currents was launched in July 2020 as a Google Workspace application to facilitate communication without flooding inboxes.
Because most communication and information sharing happens outside of meetings, Spaces is the ideal platform to message coworkers. Spaces originally started out as “Rooms.” The source 9to5Google describes the tool as, “roughly analogous to Slack.” Spaces is a function within Google Chat for groups of people to share ideas, discuss topics, exchange files, and manage tasks. Messages are displayed in threads, with the ability to comment on a message and create a side conversation, called an inline thread.
Spaces provide a centralized location for work without having to hop on a call or schedule a meeting. Team collaborations via Spaces are a more efficient and powerful channel than email.
The Shift from Currents to Spaces
Google states, “Upgrading Google Currents to Spaces removes a separate, siloed destination for users, and provides organizations with a modern, enterprise-grade experience that reflects how the world is working today.
”With the transition to Google Workspace, Spaces has become a dynamic, integrated platform to replace Currents. The commitment from Google includes, “Before we do this, we’ll deliver new capabilities in Spaces to help you communicate and collaborate more effectively.”
What if I’m Still Using Currents?
As a Wursta client, if you want Wursta to migrate your content and communities from Currents to Spaces, you must opt in from the Admin console before December 31, 2022. If your organization opts into the migration, we’ll move most of your Currents data to Spaces in early 2023. For a complete list of the data that will and will not be migrated, please refer to the Current to Spaces feature migration article in the Help Center.
What if I’m Already on Spaces?
You’re good to go! However, if you have used Currents previously and still have any content or communities you want us to migrate to Spaces, let us know by opting in from the Admin console before December 31, 2022.
What if I’m Not Using Google Currents or Google Spaces?
If you’re a current Wursta customer and would like to learn more about optimizing use of Spaces, connect with your Account Manager. A well-structured rollout is vital to harnessing the power of this platform. It’s not “just another channel.”
If you’re not a Wursta customer and would like to explore possibilities for improved collaboration, let’s connect.