How do we continue to communicate and remain productive while working from home? Well, the answer is with a lot of emails, messages, and video conferencing. If you are unfamiliar with instant conferencing, there are a lot of programs out there that get the job done. Here at the Center for Digital Engagement (CDE), we use Zoom.
Zoom allows for digital meetings that enable users to join with both video and audio. It is a really simple platform that is compatible with Windows, Mac, Linux, iOS, and Android operating systems, so just about anyone can use it. For the most part, the controls and layout are remarkably the same no matter which platform you are using, with minor exceptions for mobile versions.
There are two different tiers of the Zoom platform, Zoom Basic and Zoom Pro, that offer various features based on your needs. Zoom Basic, is a free version that meets the needs of many users. Zoom Basic offers unlimited meetings with up to 100 other users for a duration of 40 minutes and unlimited minutes for one-to-one meetings. If the meeting has to go over that, you would be required to start a new meeting. The paid version, Zoom Pro, offers services such as unlimited group meeting minutes and custom personal meeting IDs.
Once you have the app downloaded and have decided on your tier, it is really easy to start or schedule a meeting. At the CDE we schedule them regularly and send the calendar invitations over Google Calendar so that the link to join is easily accessible. Otherwise, you would need the unique 10 digit meeting code to access it at the right time. Every scheduled meeting has a distinct meeting code.
Once you start getting to know the program, adjusting the settings and sending invites tends to be really intuitive, although, be aware that at times a double click may be necessary when it seems that only a single click should be used
We will do another post about some additional features of Zoom in the near future. In the meantime, if you are looking for some helpful shortcuts within the program, check out our infographic!