Deploying and configuring Zoom Chat

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Zoom Chat is the perfect compliment to your real-time video and phone communication. Admins can deploy Zoom Chat to:

  • Boost productivity across all workflows with secure collaboration inside and outside of your organization.
  • Allow users to instantly start phone calls or video meetings, share files and even pin a message right in chat.
  • Maintain a persistent and searchable wealth of tribal knowledge and corporate messaging.
  • Configure central administration and granular security settings ensure that your policies are enforced and your information is safeguarded.

Note: Refer to the New Admin Experience article for a summary of the changes that were deployed to all accounts in June 2022.

This article covers:

Prerequisites for managing Zoom Chat admin settings

  • Account owner, admin, or user with relevant permission

How to deploy Zoom Chat

Follow these sections to deploy Zoom Chat and change account-level chat settings.

Set up advanced or auto SAML mapping

After you've configured basic SAML mapping, you can set up advanced or auto SAML mapping to define or create user groups and channels. You can either set up advanced SAML mapping to sync groups defined in your IdP to existing channels/user groups, or set up auto SAML mapping to automatically create and modify channels or user groups.

User groups determine how users are organized in the desktop client and mobile app, making it easier for your users to locate and chat with co-workers. IM groups also allow you to customize IM settings for a group of users. For example, you can create an IM group for the Billing department so that all Billing employees appear in the same section in the Contacts tab and share the same IM settings.

Channels are spaces where users can chat with each other on Zoom. They are mainly used for a specific project, team, or topic. Public channels are open for anyone to join, while private channels have invite-only membership.

  1. Sign in to the Zoom web portal.
  2. In the navigation menu, click Advanced then Single Sign-On.
  3. Click the SAML Response Mapping tab.
    • SAML Advanced Information Mapping section
      • User Group: Assign specific IdP groups to existing user groups by entering the SAML Attribute, SAML Value, and Resulting Value. For example, if your IdP has an existing attribute and value assigned to your company’s Billing department, you can assign the Billing department to the desired user group.
      • Channel: Assign specific IdP groups to existing channels by entering the SAML Attribute, SAML Value, and Resulting Value. For example, if your IdP has an existing attribute and value assigned to your company’s Billing department, you can assign the Billing department to the desired channel.
    • SAML Auto Mapping section:
      • User Group: Specify an attribute defined in your IdP to automatically create IM groups. For example, if your IdP has a manager attribute, Zoom can automatically create several manager user Groups based on all IdP groups that have that manager attribute.
      • Channel: Specify an attribute defined in your IdP to automatically create channels. For example, if your IdP has a manager attribute, Zoom can automatically create a channel for users that have the manager attribute.

Learn more about advanced SAML mapping, group management, and channel management.

Assign chat management permissions

You can create a role to assign chat management permissions to another user. This allows them to manage chat in the Zoom web portal. For example, you can create a chat management role to allow another IT admin to create and edit IM groups.

  1. Sign in to the Zoom web portal as the account owner.
  2. In the navigation menu, click User Management then Roles.
  3. Click Add Role.
  4. Specify a name and description for the role, then click Add.
  5. Click the check box in the Edit or View column for these permissions in the following sections:
    • User and Permission Management section:
      • Groups: Manage user groups
      • Contacts: Manage contact groups.
    • Reports section:
      • Chat history: Manage archived chat messages.
    • Chat Management section:
      • Chat channels: Manage channels for all users in the account.
  6. Click Save changes.
  7. Click the Role Members tab.
  8. Click Add Members.
  9. Enter the email addresses or names of users to assign the role.
  10. Click Add.

Learn more about using role management.

Change account-level Zoom Chat settings

Zoom Chat has account-level settings that apply to all users. You can enable or disable certain chat features like file transfer and code snippets. You can also customize how users are displayed in the desktop client and mobile app. The following steps are a few of the settings you can enable or disable. Learn more about all the available account-level settings.

  1. Sign in to the Zoom web portal.
  2. In the navigation menu, click Account Management then Account Settings.
  3. Click the Zoom Chat tab.
  4. Change these settings to get started with configuration:

Learn more about other account-level Zoom Chat settings.

How to configure Zoom Chat

After deploying Zoom Chat, you can create additional user groups, change user group settings, and create channels for specific teams, projects, or topics.

Determine how users/groups are shown in the desktop client and mobile app

Follow these steps to show the account's users and groups in the desktop client and mobile app (displayed in the All Contacts section on the Contacts tab).

  1. Sign in to the Zoom web portal.
  2. In the navigation menu, click User Management then Contacts.
  3. Enable the toggle at the top of the page to display the account's users and groups in the desktop client and mobile app (displayed in the All Contacts section on the Contacts tab).
  4. (Optional) Select the following check boxes:
    • List all account users under ‘All Contacts’: All users will appear under Company Contacts (displayed in the All Contacts section on the Contacts tab). Any contact groups created will not be displayed in the desktop client or mobile app when this option is enabled.
      Note: If you enable this setting, Zoom Chat group-level settings will not take effect.
    • List all Zoom Rooms under ‘All Contacts’: Select this if you don’t want Zoom Rooms to be organized as defined in the Contacts page > Zoom Rooms tab. Instead, all Zoom Rooms will appear under Zoom Rooms (displayed in the All Contacts section on the Contacts tab).
  5. Click Continue to confirm.

Link groups to the Contacts page

You can link user groups to contact groups and control how these contact groups appear in the desktop client and mobile app (displayed in the All Contacts section on the Contacts tab). Each group you select will be added as a new, separate contact group. Each contact group name will be the same as its corresponding user group name. Alternatively, follow the instructions in the next section to manually create and name contact groups (by adding individual users, or based on one or more user groups). Any users added to or removed from the user group will be reflected in the contact group.

  1. Sign in to the Zoom web portal.
  2. In the navigation menu, click User Management then Contacts.
  3. Click Select Groups.
    Note: Even if you select multiple groups, each group will be created as its own contact group.
  4. Search for and select groups to import, then select a privacy setting:
    • Visible to anyone, searchable by anyone: All users can see the group in the client and app (displayed in the All Contacts section on the Contacts tab). All users can search for group members.
    • Visible to members only, searchable by anyone: Only members can see the group in the client and app (displayed in the All Contacts section on the Contacts tab). All users can search for group members.
    • Visible to members only, searchable by members only: Only members can see the group in the client and app (displayed in the All Contacts section on the Contacts tab). Group members are only searchable by other group members.
  5. Click Import.

Manage channels

Channels allow you to create private or public spaces for a specific project, team, or discussion. Users can use channels to send messages, files, and images to other members. They can also start an instant meeting with channel members.

Note: Group chats are different from channels.

  • Group chats are started when a user starts a chat with two or more users; or invites users to an existing 1-on-1 chat.
  • Group chats don’t have the same privacy controls as channels and don’t require a topic name.
  • You can’t manage group chats in the Zoom web portal. Only group chat admins can manage them using the desktop client or mobile app.

To get started, you can create channels from your existing IM groups.

  1. Sign in to the Zoom web portal.
  2. In the navigation menu, click Account Management then IM Management.
    Note: If your account has the new UI for admin management, click Chat Management then Channels.
  3. Click Create Channel.
  4. Choose Select IM Groups and create channels for each of them.
  5. Click Next.
  6. Select one of more IM groups to create channels from. A new channel is created for each group you select.
  7. If the group's name is already being used as a channel name, the web portal will require you to resolve the naming conflict by entering a new channel name. Click Continue after resolving the conflicts.
  8. Specify the required information in these columns:
    • Channel Name: By default, the channel names are the same as the names of the group you previously selected.
    • Type: Select the channel type.
      • Public: Anyone in your organization can join your channel.
      • Private: Only invited people can join your channel.
    • Posting Permissions: Select which channel members are allowed to post in the channel.
      • Everyone: All channel members can post in the channel.
      • Admin only: Only the admin can post in the channel.
      • Admin, plus specific people: Only the admin and specified members can post in the channel.
    • Can Add External Users by: Specify if users not in your organization can be added to the channel.
      Note: If you enable this option, make sure to review the channel privileges of external users.
      • No one: Don't allow anyone to add external users to the channel.
      • All channel members: Members internal and external to your organization can add external members.
      • Members in your organization: Only members internal to your organization can add external members.
    • New Member Can See History: If checked, new members can see messages and files sent before they were members.
    • Channel Admin: Specify the channel admin. The channel admin will be able to change the channel's name, description, and settings.
  9. Click Done.

You can also create channels by syncing your IdP Groups via SAML Mapping.

Learn more about managing channels and channel settings.

Change chat storage settings

You can choose how long chat messages are stored in the Zoom cloud and on local devices. This will delete all messages after the designated time frame.

  1. Sign in to the Zoom web portal.
  2. In the navigation menu, click Account Management then IM Management.
  3. Click the IM Settings tab.
  4. In the Storage section, change these settings to get started:
    • Cloud storage: If this setting is enabled, Zoom will automatically save all persistent chat messages to the cloud. Specify the time period to store messages, then click Save. After the specified cloud retention period, Zoom will remove all the persistent chat messages and metadata from the cloud.
    • Local storage for Zoom Chat messages (excluding personal channel messages): If this setting is enabled, Zoom will automatically delete all persistent chat messages, files, images, and metadata on the local device after the specified retention period. Specify the time period messages are stored on the desktop or mobile device running Zoom, then click Save.
      Note: Users that manually download files or images can still access them on their local device.
    • Store edited and deleted message revisions: Store edited/deleted messages (as well as the original version) in the cloud.

Learn more about chat storage settings and view chat history.

How to secure Zoom Chat for your users

Enable account-level chat security settings

  1. Sign in to the Zoom web portal.
  2. In the navigation menu, click Account Management then IM Management.
  3. Click the IM Settings tab.
  4. In the Security section, change these settings to get started:

Learn more about IM groups and other advanced settings.

Remove external contacts

If users in the account add external contacts, you can view these external contacts and remove them from the account.

  1. Sign in to the Zoom web portal.
  2. In the navigation menu, click User Management then Users.
  3. In the Users tab, click the gear button in the top-right corner of the table, then select External Contacts.
  4. Locate a user that has external contacts, then click the number in the External Contacts column.
    You will see a list of external users that were added by the selected user.
  5. (Optional) Click the number in the Channels column to view channels or group chats they are members of.
  6. Click the ellipses button (...) in the last column, then click Remove from Account.

Learn more about managing internal users and external contacts.

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