Working with remote and in-office colleagues? Learn how to thrive in hybrid work environments.

Day 1: Set up Chrome browser, Gmail & Calendar

Want to get more out of Google apps at work or school? Sign up for a free Google Workspace trial

Assorted devices display Google Workspace servicesHere's a checklists of tasks we recommend for your first day with Google Workspace

These instructions are for desktop only.


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Set up Chrome browser

CheckboxInstall and learn about Chrome browser

To access your Google Workspace email and calendar, you'll use a web browser instead of a desktop app.

Why this is important 
This automatically and securely saves your work to the web. When you’re signed in, you’ll be able to see the updates you make on any device and any browser.

And if you use Chrome browser, you’ll get access to more advanced Gmail and Calendar features, too. These are described in later weeks.

If you don’t already have Chrome browser, download and install itbefore using this checklist.

CheckboxSign in to your Google Workspace account
  1. Open a browser and go to the Google Workspace User Hub.
  2. Enter your Google Workspace email address (such as and password.
CheckboxCreate profiles for personal and work accounts
  1. Open Chrome browser.
  2. In the top-right corner next to the address bar, click your profile image.
  3. Click Manage People.
  4. Click Add Person.
  5. Enter a name, choose an image, and click Add.
  6. Sign in with the Google Account you're adding.
    All settings and bookmarks automatically sync.
  7. Click your profile image and choose a different profile to switch between accounts.

Note: If you’re unsure which account you’re currently using, click your name and see which profile is at the top.

Learn more

CheckboxCreate Gmail and Calendar bookmarks
  1. In Chrome Browser, go to the site you want to visit again in the future. For example:
    • for Gmail
    • for Google Calendar
  2. To the right of the address bar, click Star ""and thenAdd Bookmark "".
  3. Choose an option:
    • To exit, click Close "".
    • To rename your bookmark or access it from a different folder, choose an option and click Done.

Learn more at the Chrome Help Center

CheckboxCreate Gmail and Calendar desktop shortcuts
  1. Go to your desktop and right-click. 
  2. Choose Newand thenShortcut
  3. Type the web address as the location. For example:
  4. (Optional) Name your shortcut.
CheckboxPin your favorite tabs
To pin a tab to the left, right-click the tab and select Pin tab. Pinned tabs are smaller and only show the site's icon.

Learn more at the Chrome Help Center

CheckboxUse keyboard shortcut keys
Keyboard shortcuts in Chrome browser help you get more done with fewer clicks. For example:
  • Ctrl/⌘ + T: Opens a new tab
  • Ctrl/⌘ + W: Closes the current tab
  • Ctrl/⌘ + Shift + T: Re-opens the last closed tab 

In most other Google Workspace apps (like Gmail and Calendar), you can see a list of available keyboard shortcuts when you press Shift + ?.

Learn more

CheckboxSet Chrome browser to remember where you left off

You can tell Chrome browser to re-open the same pages you were looking at when you quit.

  1. In Chrome Browser, at the top right, click More ""and thenSettings.
  2. Under On startup, select Continue where you left off.

Learn more at the Chrome Help Center

Set up your Gmail inbox

CheckboxCreate your email signature
  1. Open Gmail.
  2. At the top right, click Settings ""and thenSee all settings.
  3. In the General tab, scroll to Signature and click Create new.
  4. Name your signature, then click Create.
    This name is not your actual signature, but is a name for the signature template.
  5. In the text box at the right, add your signature text.
  6. Use the format bar to add text colors, links, and images.
  7. At the bottom, click Save Changes.
Create a new signature in Settings

Learn more at the Gmail Help Center

CheckboxChoose an amount of time to recall a message you sent
  1. On your computer, go to Gmail.
  2. In the top right, click Settings Settingsand then See all settings.
  3. Next to "Undo Send," select a Send cancellation period of 5, 10, 20, or 30 seconds.
  4. At the bottom, click Save changes.

Learn more at the Gmail Help Center

CheckboxAdd Google Chat to your inbox

You can add Chat to your Gmail inbox and get all the features of Chat directly in Gmail, so you can collaborate and stay connected from a central location.

  1. On your computer, open Gmail.
  2. At the top right, click Settings "" and then See all settings.
  3. At the top, click Chat and Meet.
  4. Next to “Chat,” to turn Chat on or off in Gmail, select Google Chat or Off.
  5. Click Save Changes.

You can also mute Chat notifications so you can work uninterrupted.

CheckboxGet email notifications

You can get notifications for new emails you receive, or for messages marked important.

  1. At the top right, click Settings ""and thenSee all settings.
  2. Scroll down to the Desktop notifications section.
  3. Click Click here to enable desktop notifications for <your organization>.
  4. Select New mail notifications on or Important mail notifications on.
  5. At the bottom of the page, click Save Changes.

Learn more at the Gmail Help Center

CheckboxCreate labels (similar to folders) to organize email
  1. On your computer, go to Gmail.
  2. On the left, scroll down, then click More.
  3. Click Create new label.
  4. Name your label.
  5. Click Create.

Learn more: Switch to labels from folders

CheckboxAdd filter rules to categorize incoming email
  1. Open Gmail.
  2. In the search box at the top, click Show search options photos tune .
  3. Enter your search criteria. If you want to check that your search worked correctly, see what emails show up by clicking Search. 
  4. At the bottom of the search window, click Create filter.
  5. Choose what you’d like the filter to do.
  6. Click Create filter.

Note: When you create a filter to forward messages, only new messages will be affected. ​Additionally, when someone replies to a message you've filtered, the reply will only be filtered if it meets the same search criteria. 

Tip: Try these Gmail filters for work or school.

Click arrow to create a filter

Learn more at the Gmail Help Center


Switching from Microsoft Outlook? Learn how Gmail is different

Get up to speed using Gmail

CheckboxCompose messages in a new window and resize the window

Tip: To open the Compose window with a keyboard shortcut, just type c.

  1. On your computer, go to Gmail.
  2. On the left, click Compose.
  3. (Optional) Choose a window size with the buttons in the top right:
    • Full screen ""
    • Exit full screen ""
    • Open in a new window Shift""
  4. Add a subject and recipients (To, Cc, or Bcc).

Learn more: Start sending mail

CheckboxArchive emails instead of deleting 
  1. On your computer, go to Gmail.
  2. Point to the message.
  3. On the right, click Archive Archive.

Tip: If keyboard shortcuts are turned on, you can also press e to archive an email you're looking at.

Learn more at the Gmail Help Center

CheckboxDownload and save attachments

When you receive a file in Gmail, you can download it to your computer or save a copy of it to Google Drive. 

Download an attachment to your computer

  1. On your computer, go to Gmail.
  2. Open an email message.
  3. Hover your mouse over the thumbnail, then click Download .

Your browser saves attachments you've downloaded in a download folder. Check your browser’s settings to see where to find your downloads. If you use Google Chrome, learn about downloading a file on Chrome.

You can also drag pictures and attachments from your email to your desktop to download them.

Save a copy of Gmail attachments to Drive 

Important: Some attachments can be seen or shared, but not saved to Google Drive.

  1. On your computer, go to Gmail.
  2. Open an email message.
  3. Hover your mouse over the thumbnail, then click Add to Drive Save to Drive.

You can see any files you've downloaded in Google Drive.

Save attachment options highlighted

Learn more: Tips working with attachments

CheckboxFind email with Advanced search

At the top of your inbox, search for one or more keywords that appear anywhere in the email—in the subject, body, or sender name. 

If you’re looking for something specific, click Show search options "" to use advanced search.

Example: Search for:

  • Senders—Example: From:(
  • Date ranges—Example: after:2019/3/29 before:2019/4/5
  • Keywords—Example: Company confidential
  • Message attributes, such as attachments—Example: has:attachment

Learn more at the Gmail Help Center

CheckboxAdd stars and importance markers to flag important emails

Star an email 

  1. On your computer, open Gmail.
  2. From your inbox, go to the left of the message, then click Star Star. If the message is open, click More and then Add Star.
  3. If you have multiple stars, keep clicking the star icon until you see the one you want to use.

See your starred messages

  1. On your computer, open Gmail.
  2. On the left side of the page, click Starred. You may need to click More first.

You can also use shortcuts to find starred messages by searching is:starred or has: with the star's name, like has:yellow-star.

Flag email with a star

Learn more at the Gmail Help Center

Use importance markers

Click Important "" next to an email in your inbox to mark an important message.

To find all your important email, in the left sidebar, click Important "".

Train Gmail to prioritize messages

Learn more at the Gmail Help Center

CheckboxPrint email messages

Print a single email

If there are multiple emails within the same conversation, you can print just one of those emails.

  1. On your computer, go to Gmail.
  2. Open the email you want to print.
  3. In the top right of the email, click More More.
  4. Click Print.
Reply, forward, and print options highlighted on email

Learn more at the Gmail Help Center


Want more email basics?  Get started with Gmail for Google Workspace

Set up your Google Calendar

CheckboxSet your Calendar notifications
  1. In Calendar, click Settings ""and thenSettings.
  2. On the left under General, click Event settings.
  3. Click Notifications and select an option:
    • Off
    • Desktop notifications
    • Alerts
  4. (Optional) To set up a sound for your incoming notifications, check the Play notification sounds box.
  5. (Optional) To manage your notifications, on the left, click your calendarand thenGeneral notifications.
  6. Next to each option, click the Down arrow "" and select None or Email.

Learn more

CheckboxSet your work hours

If you’d prefer not to be invited to events outside of your working hours, you can adjust your Google Calendar settings so organizers know to reschedule an event to a better time.

  1. In Calendar, go to Settings ""and thenSettings.
  2. On the left under General, click Working Hours.
  3. Check the Enable working hours box.
  4. For each day, click the time when you’re available. Suggestions might already appear, but you can click the time to change them.
  5. (Optional) To set the same times for every day, click Copy time to all.

Learn more at the Calendar Help Center

CheckboxAdd co-workers' calendars
  1. On the left, click Add calendar.
  2. Enter your co-worker’s email address. Their calendar appears under Other calendars on the left, and their events appear on your calendar page.
  3. (Optional) To temporarily hide the events from another calendar, uncheck the box next to the calendar.

Learn more

Schedule your first meeting

CheckboxCreate a calendar event
  1. In Calendar, choose an option:
    • Click an empty time slot in the calendar grid.
    • Click ""Create.
  2. Add an event title, date, and time.
  3. (Optional) To create the event on another calendar you have edit access to, at the bottom click your calendar name and select another calendar. 

Learn more

CheckboxFind open times for meetings with your team
  1. Click Find A Time. You’ll see the local time for guests in other time zones just below their name.
  2. Scroll across the time slots or click the arrows at the top to view different days and available times.
  3. Click a time slot and click Save. The time will be updated in the meeting details.

Learn more at the Calendar Help Center

CheckboxPropose a new meeting time

Note: If the event organizer has given you access to modify an event, you can reschedule it directly without proposing a new time.

  1. In Calendar, single-click the event in your calendar grid.
  2. Go to the Going? section and click the Up arrow ""and thenPropose a new time.
  3. In the Your proposal section, select a different time or day and add a message.
  4. Click Send proposal.

Learn more at the Calendar Help Center

CheckboxFind a room or resource

Note: If you don’t see resources, room details, or automatic room suggestions, your administrator might not have set them up for your organization.

  1. Click the Add rooms, location, or conferencing field.

    Note: If you don't see this option, contact your administrator.

  2. Click Add rooms.

    Based on your work location, number of attendees, and previous room bookings, suggestions automatically appear. 

  3. (Optional) If you need to adjust the criteria for your meeting room, you can click:
    • People Group to specify the required room size.
    • Video "" to specify the need for video-conferencing equipment.
    • Phone ""to specify the need for audio conferencing
  4. Point to the room that meets your criteria and check the box to select the room.
  5. If you don’t see a suitable room:
    1. In the search box, enter another resource or building name, floor, or conferencing equipment (such as Chromebox for meetings). As you enter text, you’ll see results below the search box.
    2. Point to a room to see details, such as room capacity, location, equipment and features.
    3. When you find the room you need, point to it and check the box to select it.

Learn more at the Calendar Help Center


Want more calendar basics? Get started with Google Calendar

Next steps


Google, Google Workspace, and related marks and logos are trademarks of Google LLC. All other company and product names are trademarks of the companies with which they are associated.

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