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In It Together: Hosting Online Meetings with Zoom

  • Top 2 reasons Zoom works well for meetings
  • How to use Zoom with your clients that don’t have an account
  • Security concerns and steps to protect your meetings

Recorded: April 17, 2020
Interview: Courtney Staschke, Education Events Coordinator

I’m new to hosting online meetings – how difficult is Zoom to use?

There’s two things I love about Zoom

The first is that it really was created with the everyday user in mind. Their focus is on connecting people, so they’ve kept their software user-friendly and fairly intuitive. Setting up a meeting only takes a few minutes and it walks you through the very basic questions you need to have answered beforehand – date, time, time zone, if you want to include a password. They’ve also kept the interface in the actual meetings really simple to use. Everything you need to run the meeting is in a single toolbar so the settings to control your webcam, microphone, and screen share are easily accessible during the meeting.

The second thing I love about it is that, as simple as it is to use, they’ve also packed a lot of features into their software so you can really get into customizing the experience for your clients. They have a whole separate set of features outside of the initial meeting set up in your Account Settings that will let you do things like turn on file sharing, enable a waiting room, create breakout rooms, or add polls.

Like any program, the more you use it, the easier it’s going to get. I always encourage people to carve out some time, set up an account and dig into all the features. Play around with the settings and see how they change the meeting set up. Don’t be afraid to get curious – the more you look at it like a fun tool to support your business instead of a scary computer program, the better experience you’re going to have.

Do I need an account to use Zoom? What about my clients?

One of the great things about Zoom is the only person who needs to have an account is the one who will be creating and hosting the meeting. Once you create an account, you’ll be able to start scheduling meetings and inviting others to join. Your clients/attendees will get a link to join your meeting and they will have the option to join via their web browser or to download the Zoom Application, without being required to create an account themselves.

I’m worried about attorney/client confidentiality – is Zoom secure enough for me to be holding client meetings?

Zoom has taken many steps in the last few weeks to further secure their platform, including a security feature that now allows you to lock your meeting once everyone has signed on to avoid any unwanted disruptions or visitors. There’s several steps you can take ahead of time to protect your meetings such as requiring attendees to register, password protecting your meeting, authenticating users before they can join, enabling the waiting room feature, and disabling participant’s audio/video and screen sharing capabilities.

However, not all of these features are available on the free account they offer. So if you are looking to use Zoom for confidential meetings, you’re going to want to look into getting a paid license with them. This is going to give you the more advanced security features like requiring registration and encrypting your local recordings.

You’ll want to check in with your state bar association to see what their policy might be. We know of a few places that are using Zoom for their court hearings but it’s also good to do your due diligence and make sure you’re abiding by state standards.

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