Google Admin Console: A Beginner’s How-To Guide

Google Admin Console Platform Overview

The Google Admin console is one of G Suite’s best-kept secrets. Ok, “secret” might be too strong a word, but many new G Suite account administrators haven’t heard of it before or don’t know its full capabilities. Here’s what you need to know about the Admin console and how it simplifies user and device management.

What is Google’s Admin console?

The Google Admin console is a centralized dashboard that makes it easy to manage all of your Chrome devices and G Suite services. It lets you manage users, devices, apps, billing preferences, and more, all in one place. While the console can only be accessed by people who have administrator accounts, Super Administrators can assign roles with varying management capabilities. This means that you can delegate tasks and responsibilities without making everyone a Super Admin, keeping your business and digital domain secure.

Why should you use Google Admin console?

Simply put, the admin console keeps your business organized and secure. You control the settings and web capabilities of users and can monitor what’s going on digitally at your company on a macro and micro level. You can see the number of files that have been created in a certain period, which and how many files are being shared on internally and externally, the number of people using different G Suite apps on a weekly basis, and which users are close to running out of storage.

Beyond that, Google Admin console makes it simple to manage your domain. You can add new users, create user groups, and assign predefined or custom roles.  Additionally, you can register your domain, add domains to G Suite accounts, manage your licenses, purchase new users, and more.

Last but not least, it keeps your business secure. You can use the Admin console to require employees to use 2-factor verification, enforce minimum password lengths, and wipe corporate data off of managed devices.

With all these features, why wouldn’t you want to use Admin console?

What do you need to use Google’s Admin console?

In order to use the Admin console, you have to be an administrator of some sort. However, what you’ll be able to access on Admin console depends on what role designation you have. If you can’t access something you need, talk with your domain’s Super Admin to get more access permissions

Once you have your administrator account, use it to sign into the Admin console.

How does gPanel work with the Admin Console?

gPanel snaps onto the Admin console, so anything you change in one changes in the other. gPanel simply gives you more granular control over your users and devices.

Read more: gPanel 101

Overview of Google Admin Console Features

There are many, many tools within the Google Admin console, but here is an overview of the basics.

Admin RolesAdmin Console Admin Roles icon

Admin roles make it easy to delegate who can manage your Google Cloud accounts and what specific actions they can take. Preset roles include Super Admins, user management admins, group admins, service admins, and help desk admins. If none of these are right for a user, you can give them multiple roles or create a custom role.

 

AppsAdmin console Apps icon

This part of the Admin console lets you manage settings on your apps and turn Google services on or off. You can also have service-specific settings.

 

BillingAdmin console Billing icon

This is the place to go if you want a flexible plan or annual plan, purchase more users, and renew annual plans. You can also choose your billing country’s currency and your payment method.

 

Company ProfileAdmin console Company profile icon

Customize your employee G Suite experience in your company’s profile. You can upload your company logo and automatically set a language and time zone for new users. You can also choose if you want users to get G Suite updates as soon as Google pushes them or on a weekly, scheduled release. Finally, this is the place to designate your Data Protection Officer (DPO) for GDPR compliance.

 

Data MigrationAdmin console Data migration icon

What happens to all your old emails when you switch from a legacy system to G Suite? You can easily bring them over with data migration! This feature lets you import emails, contacts, and calendars so you won’t lose anything important

 

Device ManagementAdmin console Device management icon

This is one of Promevo’s favorite parts of the Admin console. Device management lets you add and manage Chrome devices for your organization’s G suite accounts. This works on both personal devices—if you’re in a BYOD environment—and on company-owned devices, including Chromebooks, smartphones, tablets, and smartwatches. This helps keep your company’s data private. You can wipe corporate data off of devices, require passcodes, and restrict hardware usage, like turning off webcams or USB transfers. Basic device management is automatically applied when a user signs into their company email address on a device, but it can be manually turned off.

 

DomainsAdmin console Domains icon

You can use the Admin console to easily add additional domains or aliases to a primary one and whitelist external domains so that your organizations can collaborate through certain Google products.

 

GroupsAdmin console Groups icon

Organize your workforce by department, function, location, or however else you’d like! Groups makes it simple to put people together into a mailing list, so you can email all of accounting all at once or invite marketing to lunch without having to do a calendar invite for every individual member of the department.

 

SecurityAdmin console Security icon

We know that security is a huge concern for our customers, and the Admin console can help protect your business. You can require 2-step verification and minimum password lengths, monitor passwords, and require screen locks on managed devices. You can also allow some, but not all, employees use less-secure apps. These things will keep your breach risks as low as possible.

 

ReportsAdmin console Reports icon

There are a variety of reports that make it easy to monitor users and their actions. View app usage, file sharing, and the number of users near their storage limits. You can also see the number of emails sent over a specific time, the number of non-Google apps installed, and amount of queries in Cloud search. Admin console also provides audit reports of actions performed by administrators, so you can see where any system changes came from.

 

UsersAdmin console Users icon

Last but not least is user management. Admin console lets you quickly add new users, manage the OUs they belong to, and reset their passwords. You can also see their drive usage and view the total storage employees have left.

 

 

Navigating the Admin Console

Admin console home page navigation

  1. This side navigation menu lists common actions done by admins and can bring you back to the Admin console homepage. You can hover and click through the menu to drill down directly to the pages you want to see. You’ll spend less time browsing and more time doing.
  2. This is the universal search bar. You can search for things such as users, groups, and settings.
  3. The hourglass icon shows your tasks and their progress. The question mark icon is a help button that lets you search for support articles.
  4. The bell shows notifications, alerts, and announcements.
  5. Clicking < will show usage and activity, tools, common tasks, and recommended apps.
  6. These three vertical dots form the settings option. Use it to navigate to the G Suite setup wizard to help you setup G Suite within your organization, or take a tour of the Admin console with on-screen prompts.
  7. The more controls tab is where you can hide or unhide homepage icons based on your preference. To hide or unhide a homepage icon, just click the icon and drag it to where you would like it to go.
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