Over the last 18 months of the COVID-19 pandemic, Zoom experienced significant user growth thanks to an abrupt pivot to sustained teleworking for many parts of the workforce. Now, both video conferencing and hybrid work are here to stay. This means Zoom user management should be at the top of every IT department checklist. Luckily, Zoom provides built-in tools to manage users, the Zoom software itself, and physical devices for Zoom calls. This is a guide to the built-in management capabilities in the service. In addition, we discuss some considerations when it comes to user management and a few third-party management tool suggestions from Omdia, Informa’s research and analysis business.
Zoom User Management: The Built-In Tools
Anyone can sign up for a free or paid Zoom account just by using their own email address. That free account can use some of the built-in Zoom user management tools, which are available directly on the Zoom website. However, to get the full benefits of Zoom’s built-in management tools, a subscription is required to either their Pro, Business, or Enterprise plan.
Depending on which subscription is in use, that will dictate what parts of the management tools will be directly available to an IT admin on the service.
Here is a rundown of the entire management suite available to enterprise subscribers.
Subsets of these tools will be available for the Business, Pro, and even Free accounts for Zoom user management.
To Add New Users and Their Roles To Zoom
Users can be added in multiple ways: individually; by uploading a Comma Separated Value (CSV) file; or via just-in-time provisioning using an organization’s company credentials through the Single Sign On (SSO) process.
Once users are added to the service, admins can access User Management, then define user roles as an Owner, Admin, or Member. In addition, users can be assigned to groups under Group Management. This is a great way to collect end users into work-related groups such as admin, operations, or other similar work groups/units for simpler Zoom management.
Zoom Device Management
Zoom supports a list of certified hardware that can all be managed under either Device Management or Room Management in the Zoom user management interface.
Zoom currently provides support for three categories of calling hardware:
- Zoom Rooms Certified Hardware
- USB Cameras
- USB Speakerphones
- All-in-one Room Systems
- Zoom Phone Certified Hardware
- SIP (Session Initiation Protocol) Phones
- Paging and Intercom devices
- Infrastructure Integration (Session Border Control (SBC), gateways, Analog Telephone Adapter (ATA)
- Zoom Personal Workspace Certified Hardware
- USB Headsets
- USB Cameras
- USB Speakerphones
- Personal Collaboration Monitors
Here is the entire list of specific compatible devices from Zoom.
In addition to the above devices, there is a Zoom Connector for organizations that utilize either Polycom or Cisco devices for calling integration with those backend systems.
Zoom User Management Considerations
Prachi Nema, principal analyst for Enterprise Communications at Omdia, says there are some aspects of Zoom user management that must be considered when using the service. Among these are the following:
- Managing users – Managing and monitoring users allows an enterprise to understand the usage of the service, call quality, etc.
- Managing meeting rooms – By managing and monitoring meeting rooms, IT can get critical insights into room stats such as room usage, number of people in the room, room temperature, humidity, lighting, etc.
- Managing security – Managing security is critical as IT should know where and how the calls are being routed, who is joining the calls and from where, where are the meeting data (recordings) residing, etc.
- Managing end user devices such as webcams and headsets – IT can manage these devices remotely, replace faulty devices, check for call quality on devices, update firmware, etc.
Nema also stated that quite often large enterprises use third-party solutions such as IR Collaborate and Unifysquare’s PowerSuite to accommodate more than one collaboration platform within their organization. The multi-vendor diagnostics and management dashboards from third-party services allow those IT employees to have a broad view of all the services through one portal.
Of course, this also means additional costs, so a good cost analysis is necessary to fully evaluate the ROI when using third-party solutions and multiple collaboration platforms – or just their built-in management tools.
Bottom line is that what works from one organization when it comes to Zoom user management will not necessarily be a viable solution for another organization.