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Google gives Apps admins a deeper dive on usage info

Google gives Apps admins a deeper dive on usage info

The changes aim to simplify management and give IT pros a better view of app usage

Google redesigned the reports section of the Apps admin console, including a new Highlights overview page

Google redesigned the reports section of the Apps admin console, including a new Highlights overview page

Google has redesigned the reports section of the Apps admin console, giving IT staff a lot more details about who's been using the online apps suite and how.

"Starting today, we're introducing a new Reports section to the Admin console to make it easier for admins to manage Google Apps and also gain insights that help their entire organization run more efficiently," product manager Rishi Dhand said in a blog post.

However, Google is giving admins the option to toggle between the old and new reports sections, because some features haven't yet been ported over.

Menu names have changed, as well as how features are grouped together, so Google has provided a table that maps out how the old and new locations match up.

The new Highlights page gives an overview of users' activities, including the number of Docs, Sheets and Slides files created. It also shows the number of Hangouts held and the amount of Drive and Gmail storage used. From here, admins can export reports to Sheets for further analysis.

In the Usage Activity page, admins can get granular data on how employees are using the different apps. They can also shift columns around to customize data views and apply filters to zero in on details, like who has created or shared the most documents.

The Security page shows information like who has turned on two-step verification and how many files have been shared externally, and admins can rearrange and filter data as with the Usage Activity page.

The Login Audit page lets admins see a log with the IP addresses of people trying to access the Apps suite, the dates and whether they were successful. "Admins can use this report to track suspicious activity and take corrective action like resetting passwords," Dhand wrote.

Unlike the old reports, the new section doesn't have data on mobile and Chrome OS users; Google plans to add those soon.

Juan Carlos Perez covers enterprise communication/collaboration suites, operating systems, browsers and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Follow Juan on Twitter at @JuanCPerezIDG.

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