Editor’s Note: Recently we announced the winners of our global Gone Google ad contest. Today’s featured winner is Sharon Delia, Communications Director, South Carolina REALTORS®

South Carolina REALTORS® (SCR) is the largest non-profit trade association in the state of South Carolina. With 14,000 professional REALTOR® members, and a staff of only eleven employees, our association depends on fast, efficient and reliable means of communication. We needed a way to simplify our IT management while maintaining communication between our small staff on-the-go. And, considering the recovering real estate market, we wanted a streamlined way of doing business that our members could also use.

Switching to Google Apps has enabled us to do just that. With Google we streamline tasks, become more efficient and enhance productivity and organization. The benefits have been so great, we encourage our REALTOR® members to use it as well ... and they are!

When we sent an email to our members telling them about all the benefits of Google Apps - access from anywhere, great collaboration tools, and 25 GBs of email storage, just to name a few - we received multiple responses from excited new Google Apps users.

Kristin Walker, a REALTOR® at Dunes Properties in Charleston, SC was happy to find out SCR has gone Google and wrote to tell us about it. “It's great to hear SCR has gone Google!! My company completed our transition to Google Apps about a month ago. Many of our agents were already familiar with the Google platform and we have been training the others on the tools. We've got shared online calendars now and are using Google Docs for company-wide documents. It is definitely enhancing productivity!”

At SCR, our Google REALTOR® Education Calendar adorns the screaltors.org homepage. We are able to collaborate on projects through Google Docs, check email through Google Apps on our company cell phones and teach our members how to video chat with their clients. We’re even using the user-friendly Google Sites to create an online presence for our 2011 annual conference, The Unconference. But the best part is the $50,000 a year in savings for our members.

And of course, it’s comforting to know our email is reliable. So, while we watch the real estate industry bounce back, we are confident our emails will not. Thank you, Google!