Zoom is one of the most popular software for hosting online meetings. It lets you host a meeting with up to 100 participants for free, and supports up to 1,000 participants in a meeting on paid plans.
If you’re working from home and need to connect to your work colleagues for a quick group meeting, or even a ‘1 to 1’ session, you can easily set up a Zoom meeting from your desktop or mobile device, and anyone you invite can join the meeting.
Download and Install Zoom Meeting Client
Zoom is available on almost platforms. The software has apps for Windows, Mac, Linux, iOS, Android, and a fully functional Web interface too. If you’re joining a meeting hosted by someone else, you don’t even need the Zoom Meetings client on your computer. The web interface is good enough to join Zoom meetings.
That said, let’s dive into installing Zoom on your computer so you can host a Zoom meeting and invite your work colleagues to join.
First, go to the Zoom Download Center page on your computer and click the ‘Download’ button under the ‘Zoom Client for Meetings’ section to download the installer file.
Run/Double-click on the downloaded ‘ZoomInstaller.exe’ file from the Downloads folder on your computer.
The Zoom installer is one-click install. Right after you run it, it’ll begin the installation without further input and automatically open the ‘Zoom Cloud Meetings’ window on your PC after finishing the installation.
In case the Zoom Meetings window doesn’t open automatically, search for ‘Zoom’ in the Start menu and open the ‘Start Zoom’ app from there.
The Zoom meetings app has a straightforward interface. The main screen of the app will give two options: ‘Join a meeting’ and ‘Sign in’.
One of the best thing about Zoom is that you don’t need a Zoom account to join a Zoom meeting. This is why the software has a direct link for ‘Join a Meeting’ without the ‘Sign in’ step at first.
Since the better purpose of this tutorial is to show you how to host a Zoom meeting, we’ll ‘Sign In’ any way. Click the ‘Sign In’ button on the screen.
If you’ve got a Zoom account already, sign in with your existing account credentials (email ID and password). Or use the ‘Sign In with Google’ or ‘Sign in with Facebook’ or the other Sign in options available. You could also use the ‘Sign Up Free’ link at the bottom right to create a new account using the good old Email ID and Password procedure.
We’ll swift through the process quickly using the ‘Sign In with Google’ button on the right. But you can choose any option as per your preference.
After signing in, you’ll see the Zoom dashboard screen in the app with options to start a ‘New Meeting’, ‘Join’ or ‘Schedule’ a meeting, and even a ‘Share screen’ option to share your computer’s screen with someone.
Set up a Zoom Meeting
To start a meeting in Zoom, click on the ‘New Meeting’ option in the Zoom app.
A new ‘Zoom Meeting’ window with your meeting ID mentioned in the window name at the top left will open.
Click on the ‘Invite’ button at the bottom of the meeting window screen to add participants to the meeting.
If you’ve contacts added to your Zoom account, you can select the Contact name, and they’ll be sent an invite. But since you’re probably using Zoom for the first time, we suggest you click on the ‘Email’ tab.
Click on your preferred email client, and you’ll be redirected to the ‘Compose’ Email screen of your preferred Email service with the invitation details pre-filled in the Email body.
In the ‘To’ address bar, type in the Email addresses of the people you wish to send the invitation to join the meeting. You can send this invitation mail to one person or multiple people in a single go.
Click the ‘Send’ button after adding the Email addresses of the participants of the meeting.
The receiving participants will be able to join the meeting based on the details mentioned in the invitation mail.
If you wish to send the Zoom Meeting invitation by other means, say an SMS message or via chat clients like Slack, WhatsApp, Telegram, Google Hangouts and the likes, you can also ‘Copy URL’ of the Invitation or ‘Copy Invitation’ text (the same that we sent via Email) and share using any communication service of your preference.
Both ‘Copy URL’ and ‘Copy Invitation’ can be selected from the bottom left corner of the ‘Invite’ people window.
Close the invitation window when you’re done sending invitations for the Zoom meeting.
Now, all that is left is to wait for everyone to join so you can start the meeting. In case your work colleagues are taking longer to join, let them know by your regular means of communication that you’ve sent an invitation to them via Zoom (contacts), or Email, or Slack, or whichever means you chose to send the invite.
If you’ve invited more than 3 people to the meeting, know that Zoom’s free plan has a limit of 40-minute session only for group meetings with more than 3 participants. To increase this limit to 24 hours, consider upgrading to the Zoom Pro plan.
To End or Leave the Zoom meeting, click on the ‘End Meeting’ button at the bottom right corner of the Zoom meeting window.
You’ll get the option to either ‘End Meeting for All’, Or the option to just ‘Leave Meeting’ to keep it running as others continue the discussion.
Setting up a Zoom meeting with your work colleagues is the easiest thing of all when you’re working from home. Also, it’s completely free for most of the stuff. Unless you are a large office working remotely, Zoom’s free plan should suffice your needs.