While technology has yet to live up to the promises of Tomorrow’s World and The Jetsons — such as android servants and flying cars — the ability to speak face-to-face via videoconferencing from almost anywhere on the planet has gone from science fiction to an everyday occurrence. Whether you’re connecting a distributed business team for a weekly update meeting or just saying hello to distant friends and family, Zoom is an excellent means of scheduling meetings for personal and professional occasions.
If only you could get everyone together at the same time! The best way to do so is to schedule a Zoom meeting.
When scheduling a meeting for your business, be aware that your account administrator can block specific features or require further information from participants to use them. If this is the case, you might see an asterisk (“*”) next to the setting, but you can click on the embedded links in each option for further information. Note that meetings for basic account users will automatically end after 40 minutes if there are three or more participants.
After signing into Zoom via the client or a browser, select the Schedule icon that resembles a calendar page. This will either open a new window or take you to the Schedule Meeting page where you can confirm the details of your videoconference.
From the Schedule Meeting window, you can peruse the following settings. Basic options include choosing a name, duration, date, and time for your meeting — the time and duration can be adjusted by 15-minute increments. Note that you and other participants’ meeting can begin at any time before the scheduled time. Zoom will automatically use your computer’s time zone, but you can select a different time zone using the drop-down menu.
You may not see options disabled and locked by the account administrator, but typically the options include:
- Create a recurring ID that will remain the same for each session for regular meetings. You can use your Personal ID, or create a randomly generated one. If you do make the meeting recurring, don’t forget to schedule it in your calendar service.
- Use a meeting passcode that participants will have to enter before they gain access (business users must create passwords that meet their admin’s security requirements).
- Decide whether the host and participants’ video is off or on when joining your meetings, though the host and participants always have the option to start their video.
- Send out invites with quick links to open calendar services and create events with iCal and Outlook or download ICS files for using other email services. You can also select Other Download Services to copy the meetings URL, date, and time.
Advanced options include enabling the Waiting Room, allowing participants to join before the host, determining whether participants are automatically muted on entry, and choosing whether the local computer is recording the meeting.
Select Schedule to create your meeting, and a window with your preferred service will open (Google, in this example). You can add guests and set their permissions, send out pre-meeting notifications, determine your default visibility, and send invitations with a URL, Meeting ID, and password (if needed).
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