When COVID forced the majority of people worldwide to remain at home, Zoom became the ultimate video conference app to keep the isolated world connected. Zoom is now the most popular app to facilitate education, provide healthcare assistance, allow business meetings, and so on.
Although it is a fairly easy-to-use app on different devices, users can miss out on its most useful options since most of the features in Zoom aren’t apparent.
Since most of the important works are based on zoom meetings nowadays, users must know all the hidden features to make the zoom sessions effective.
Make Sessions Fun With the Zoom Virtual Background Feature.
Zoom allows its users to change their background with various virtual background themes. This is by far one of the coolest features of zoom which makes all the sessions fun. This is the most underused feature of Zoom since many users don’t know its existence.
Even if users know about this feature, they don’t know how to use it. Steps to use this option are as follows.
- Visit your profile and click settings
- On the left of the menu, click virtual background.
- Users will be able to see different backgrounds and the conference background will change by clicking on the desired selection.
Users can upload different backgrounds according to their liking as well. Zoom will allow the users to upload a virtual background from their computer by clicking on the + icon.
This hidden feature of Zoom can make a significant contribution towards effective meetings and briefings.
It becomes frustrating when some attendees forget to mute their mics. The noises coming from unmuted attendees make it hard for the participants to concentrate. Many hosts don’t realize that they have the authority to mute anyone`s mic.
The host should mute all the participants from the start to make the session effective. The host can also mute all the participants from the start by default as well by toggling mute participants upon entry.
To make participants stay muted throughout the meeting host can use the temporarily unmute option by holding the spacebar to talk.
For organizations like schools and colleges, this feature is very useful to keep the students quiet throughout the class.
Increase Privacy With a Waiting Room Feature
Anyone can join the important meeting on zoom uninvited. It would be disturbing for the participants when many uninvited join their meeting and causing chaos.
The host should use the zoom waiting room feature to ensure that only invited or registered guests are joining the meeting.
Moreover, the host should not share important meeting URLs publicly. Users can also limit the zoom meeting to members with email addresses registered to the organization domain.
Furthermore, the host also has the authority to lock the meeting after all the participants joined the meeting. In this way, no outsiders can join and disturb the meeting.
Record Your Meetings
Recording important meetings are essential so participants can revisit the important meeting pointers after the meeting. This feature is very important for an organization like schools and colleges. Students can benefit from this feature by revising important concepts and make useful notes for their exams. If any participant doesn’t attend the meeting, he can watch it later.
To start the recording, the host has to click the `record` button which can be seen at the bottom of the screen. The pause and start option of recording will appear on the upper-left screen of the meeting.
After the meeting is finished click the stop button to end the recording. Once the session ends, the application will save the recorded file on your desktop.
Share Screen With Guests
The host can show his screen to his meeting participants. This feature is very useful when the host has to use PowerPoint slides or important notes for briefings. Visual aids contribute significantly in making the Zoom sessions much more engaging and effective for participants.
Users have to click on the share screen icon on the toolbar to activate the sharing feature. Moreover, zoom gives the option to share only a particular part of the screen or the entire desktop with participants. This feature is available for all the participants. However, the host can restrict the meeting members to share the screen.
There are numerous keyboard shortcuts available in Zoom. These shortcut keys are very efficient and handy to navigate the functions without clicking on the screen. There are general commands available in the Zoom App to join the meeting, start or stop the recording and even adjust the screen size of the video.
These shortcut keys are very useful and save a lot of user time. Moreover, these shortcut keys come in handy when the user mouse is not working properly.
Zoom Breakout Room
Breakout room is one of the underused features of zoom. This feature allows the user to separate the guests into smaller groups. In these smaller groups, members can have a private discussion, and return to the main meeting later. This feature can only be created by desktop users and allows for 50 different breakout rooms.
Here is how to create a breakout room.
- Click on my account
- Click on the setting option available under the personal heading
- Scroll down to the in-meeting option which can be seen under the meeting heading
- Enable the breakout room to activate this feature.
This feature further improves the privacy of the meeting and allows the users to switch between the sessions at any point.
Hide Participants Without Video
If there are lots of participants in the meeting, it is easier to get distracted which makes the meeting less fruitful. Zoom allows the users to hide the off-camera participants to free their screen from participants.
Hide the non-video participants by clicking on the video in settings, after that select the meeting, and check to hide non-video participants option. Now only enabled video participants will appear on the screen which makes the meetings much more engaging than staring at hidden faces.
Have a Backup Plan
It would be frustrating if you are the host and you lost connection in between the meeting. You should have a contingency plan ready to avoid this issue. You should have an alternative internet connection with an extra device so in case of a technical issue you can join the meeting quickly.
Losing connection and joining late due to technical errors can make the meeting ineffective and boring for participants. Having a backup plan ensures a satisfactory meeting and avoids possible frustrations.
Many handy yet underrated Zoom features can make virtual meetings effective. Different types of organizations can avail these unique video conferencing features to make their meeting more engaging.
The global pandemic has caused Zoom App to emerge as an internationally popular video conferencing, and learning about its useful and hidden features can conveniently facilitate our online meetings