External collaboration

There are two main scenarios where you may be using your UoB Google account to collaborate with people external to the University.

  1. You created the material in Google and shared it with others
  2. Someone at another institution has created the material and shared it with you

You created the material in Google and shared it with others

In this scenario you can:

  1. Export your Google Drive files to OneDrive and SharePoint (UoB only)
  2. Create an Office 365 Group in Outlook (external link) for your collaboration project - make sure you read the UOB data classifications to set the correct classification for your Group (the default Confidential should be suitable for most Private groups).
  3. Upload the relevant documents to the Office 365 Group (external link)
  4. Invite your external collaborators as 'guest' members of your Office 365 Group (UoB only)

Further guidance on the use of Office 365 Groups is available.

Someone at another institution has created the material and shared it with you

In this case you are the 'guest' and your options will depend on the email system (e.g. Google, Microsoft Office 365, etc.) the other institution uses, how it is set-up and any policies that external collaborators need to abide by. If in doubt, ask the person who shared with you at the other institution. It is likely your options will fall in one of the following scenarios:

1. The other institution also uses Microsoft Office 365

You may be able to continue accessing content shared with you without doing anything. However, if you encounter problems, ask the person who shared with you to re-share or re-invite you using your UoB username email address (e.g. ab12345@bristol.ac.uk oredabc@bristol.ac.uk).

2. The other institution uses Google

If you send an invite to a non-Google account then that link can be viewed (but not edited) by anyone with the link. Apart from being highly insecure, sharing in this manner does not allow you to edit what's been shared with you.

Therefore, your best option is to create a non-UoB Google account and to ask your external partner to invite you using the email address for your Google account.

NOTE: you can specify an existing non-Gmail email address or choose to create a new Gmail one, but note that you cannot re-use your UoB email address.

For further information see Why can’t I share Drive files with non-Google accounts? (external link).

If your needs are not covered by either scenario above

Do not worry, the advice above is designed to meet the needs of the most common scenarios that affect most people. If your needs are not covered above:

If you have any questions, please attend a drop-in clinic or email us.

Supply as much information as possible about your specific needs and if there isn't a known or obvious solution, then a face-to-face meeting will probably be the next step.