At Connecteam, we want your setup to be strong and secure. As customer success managers we took our experience from working with hundreds of security companies worldwide and created this step-by-step tutorial to get your company set up to PERFECTION. You can expect this guide to go through all of the steps needed to get your account up and running with real-world examples of how each feature or capability can work for a security company. Like Connecteam, this guide works as an all-in-one solution to your Communication Hub Set Up.

While there are many other articles found here on our Help Center we have designed this guide, particularly for security companies of your kind and it should walk you through your complete setup step by step.

Don't worry! We’ve got all of the first steps to make your life easy and Connecteam work for you! 🤩


Table of Contents


👪 Users & Smart Groups:

Wait! Did you sign up for multiple hubs? If you already received a setup guide and know how to add users and create smart groups, then click here to move on to the next section.

The first steps when setting up your account are going to be adding your users and creating your smart groups. In this section we will walk you through:

🗣 Custom Fields

Custom fields are information fields found inside the user's profile, and are filled with information specific to each employee. Custom fields are a smart way to identify and group your workforce, allowing you to customize what information is important to your company in order to organize its users. Examples of custom fields can be Position, Department, Birthday, Uniform Size, and much more.

We recommend planning out the information you want to know about your employees and creating these custom fields prior to adding the employees themselves. This will allow you to update all their information when adding them and save you tons of time later.

To add a custom field head over to the user's tab, enter the employee's detail page then select Add Field and choose the type of field, name it, and press save. In the example below you can see we created a custom field named position. In my company, the positions will be Security Officer, Guard, Patrol Officer, and Field Manager\Supervisor. Many security companies also create a custom field for the team department.

Please note that there are 3 default fields you will never be able to edit or delete; these are First Name, Last Name, and Mobile Phone.

💡A Customer Success Manager’s Tip: We recommend using the drop-down custom field type when creating your custom fields, which allows you to create a list of information to select from when filling out the custom field. This will simplify things later if using smart groups, which are filtered by custom fields. The filter of smart groups is case-sensitive, and here at Connecteam, we have encountered numerous companies whose users were not added to the proper smart groups because of typos made when filling out a user's custom field. Using a drop-down custom field avoids this possibility right from the start!


👤 Adding Users

Once you have set up your custom fields it's time to move on to adding users. After all, that's what you came here for - managing your workforce.

To add users simply navigate your way to the Users Tab on the left - hand and click on it. Once inside select Add Users and fill in the requested details. You can also use the menu on the right side to add more details than the ones which appear here which are only the required fields. After filling out the details make sure the Send an invite button is selected in order to invite them to the platform.

💡Tip: If you have many users, you can import them in bulk

👥 Creating Smart Groups to Sort Users

Smart groups are groups based on rules. All the users who meet the rule will automatically be added to the group and those who don't will be added. It's as simple as that. A smart groups filter is based on custom fields - which we previously created.

Security companies' smart groups are hugely beneficial and allow you to create different teams with different qualifications\position\licenses. Also, many security companies create groups for each location\site\client. Bigger companies that have a management level, usually create a group also for that. For example, you can group your staff by their ability to do specific jobs like- armed\unarmed jobs. Since Connecteam's features, assets, jobs in the schedule, chats and much more can be assigned to smart groups, grouping them now will help us later on with things like scheduling correctly (and much more).

To create a smart group follow these steps:

Step 1: Navigate to the smart group's category on the left sidebar

Step 2: First, add a Segment

Step 3: Use the + Add a group button from inside the Segment to create a group and then name the group.

Step 4: Set the Filter. First, choose the Custom field, and then finally select or enter the criteria that the group will be defined by.

In the example below you can see how I create a group of only my staff who are qualified as guards.


Chat

Connecteam’s chat is your way to create an efficient communication center with your employees, Plus it's easy and instant! The chat allows users to effortlessly share media and files and it’s connected to almost any feature in the system making it easy to chat with anyone anywhere!

Using Connecteam's chat feature you will be able to limit communication, keep all the data in-house, control who can chat with whom, segment into departments, work-life separation, and more!

In this section we will go over the:

Before we begin we will give you a quick overview of how using the chat looks for your employees!

User Experience

The chat keeps all your employee communication happening in one place. It's simple and easy for employees to use, and they can participate in any team chat they are assigned to or start personal chats with other employees.

How to Activate the Chat

To activate the chat enter launchpad, go to the left sidebar, to the Company Chat feature, and activate the chat.

Type of Chats

Now that you have activated the chat let's go over how to open a new chat.

To open a new chat, simply navigate to the "Add New" Button and add the relevant chat. There are 3 types of chats you can create depending on your needs. These are New Chat, New Team, and New Channel.

New Chat

This one-on-one chat allows you to communicate with a single user or admin. Share information instantly, or clarify shifts by immediately chatting with a user or admin. In an individual chat, both people can communicate and write in the chat.

New Team

Team chats allow you to create groups and share information with a specific group of people. Team chats can be created for specific users by choosing select users, or for Smart Groups that you have already created. In a team chat all the members have the ability to see and respond to messages.

Real-life example:
A security company we work with created a group chat for all the guards.

New Channel

A channel is a one-way communication with your employees. If you want to communicate a message to a group of users without anyone being able to respond then this option is for you. A channel ensures you can effectively communicate with your users without the chat becoming flooded. Just like Team Chats, Channels can also be assigned to Smart Groups or Individual Users.

Pro tip: Not familiar with Smart Groups? Check out this article!

Here are a few examples of how using Chats, Team chats, and Channels can be useful for your Company:

  • Create a Team Chat or a Channel based on your position\qualification-

Guards\Field managers\Armed\Unarmed and more!

  • Create a Team Chat or a Channel Based on the name Client /Site

Real-life example:
A security company we work with created a channel to send important messages to all the field managers.

How to Start a Chat from Anywhere in the Platform.

Now that you have learned how to create chats let's talk about how to start a chat from anywhere on the platform. At the top of the screen, the chat icon can always be seen from anywhere inside the platform.

Simply click on it and the chat will open on the right

Additionally, in all other features such as the Job Schedule, Time Clock, Quick Tasks, and more, you can select the relevant users and create either a team chat or individual chat from the Actions Tab. In the example below, we can see a chat that is created with team chats with three selected users from inside the Today Tab in the Time Clock Feature.

Chat Settings

Security information could be private, this is why we would recommend setting up the Chat feature settings, so you can control who can start a conversation and decide if the media could be shared outside of Connecteam.

Let's navigate to the Chat Settings.

Enter the Chat, to the options tab, and select Settings.

Once inside the settings, there are 2 main categories of settings such as Chat permissions and Sharing Permissions which have different options inside.

From the All users permissions, Admins permissions, Team Chat permissions, and Sharing Settings.

Now, Let's go over these different options!


Chat Permissions

All Users Permissions

The All users permissions allow admins to choose whether mobile users are able to create chats, or not, or whether they can only start chats with other users who meet specific criteria. Below we will go over the different options.

Users can start a chat conversation with anyone: This allows mobile users to start a chat with anyone.

Users can't start chat conversations with other users: by choosing this option, a mobile user will not be able to start a chat with anyone, or unless the user meets certain criteria. Here you have two options:

  • Option 1: Unless they have the same - Here you can choose from the dropdown criteria that the other user needs to match in order for them to be able to chat, for example, position. This corresponds to the Custom fields selected in their user profile. When using this option users will only be allowed to chat with those who have the same custom fields that do.

For example, in A Security company with positions such as guards, field manager, etc. when using this chat setting then guards can only chat with other guards, and nobody else. Take a look at how this looks below.

Pro tip: This only applies to Custom Fields that are created as drop-downs in the User Profile. Take a look at our Drop Down Custom Fields article to learn more about this.

  • Option 2: Unless those other users are - Here you can choose not to allow your users to chat with anyone except select users that you choose.

For example, you may choose to allow them to start chats only with the person who is their manager. Take a look at how this looks below.

Users can never start a conversation with: This option allows you to Select Users who users will never be able to start conversations with. For example, this might be your CEO, Payroll Manager, or anyone else who you don't want users to start chats with.

Pro Tip: These settings and options mentioned aren't exclusive, meaning you can use more than one of the chat settings at the same time, fully customizing your company's chat experience.

Admins Permissions

The Admins permissions will allow the Owner to control whether admins will be allowed to chat with anyone in the company or just the smart groups they are in charge of.

Admins can start conversations with anyone: This allows the admins to be able to start a chat with anyone from the company, whether they are part of their smart group or not.

Admins can start a conversation with only the users part of their smart group

This allows the admins to be able to get in contact with only the users who they are admins for.

Team Chat Permissions

The mobile users' teams options allow admins to decide whether or not users can create team chats, or to specify exceptions to the general rule they choose to set.

Users Can Create Teams: This allows users to create teams, except for select users that you choose who can not. In the example below you call see I allow all my users but one to create teams.

Users Can Not Create Teams: This option will not all users to create a team except for the select users you set.

In the example below you can see that no users can create teams, except one.

Sharing Permissions

The default sharing permissions which are available in the Advanced Communication plan, enable you as an admin to set limitations on if users are able to share images and videos from one chat to another inside the company app, or if users can share content with other platforms (for example Facebook or Whatsapp).

The default settings are:

  • Users can forward messages and file attachments to other group chats and private conversations within the app: this means users can share content from one team chat to another one inside the app.

  • Users can share file attachments outside the app: this means that users can share content from the platform with other apps, for example, WhatsApp, Facebook, Gmail, etc.

  • Users can download and save images shared in chat conversations: which means that users will be able to download and save the images that are shared onto their devices.

If you do not want users to share content with other teams inside the chat, or share content outside of your app, you can toggle off these settings. You can see how this looks below.

Updates

Any changes in the Worksite? The shifts in clients are canceled due to holidays? You can inform all your employees using Updates!

Updates are a great way for security companies to engage employees and interact with them, especially when they might be working in different locations and at times.

The update will show on your employee's app feed and will help you set your own company’s culture and help with day-to-day Operations.

In addition to that, as an admin, you can get insights into who has seen your update and make sure your message is conveyed.

In this section we will go over the following:

Now, Let's Begin!

Example of Updates Security Companies Might Use:

  • Congratulating a new employee

  • Recognizing a good job

  • Sharing files and media from different worksites

  • Sharing Company’s important information and news:

    • Client’s feedback

    • New instructions and protocols

    • Company and shift changes

  • A task they need to complete through the shifts

  • Create a live poll

Real-life example:
A security company we work with created updates to share the team with clients' feedback and to send media from the work sites to give instructions on a new work site.

Creating an Update

In order to create an update you can simply access the Updates feature,

  1. Choose one of the templates or create a new one

  2. Type in your message

  3. Choose a background

  4. Attach any file, link, video, poll, or shortcut for a Form.

  5. Choose who you’d like to assign it to - Smart group or specific users.

  6. Set your update’s settings and publish (Enable comments and likes, Send a push notification Etc.)

Gaining Insights

Once your Update is published you have the option to gain insights and make sure all your employees saw your message. You can also filter out the results and send a message to the employees that did not see them yet.

Directory

Creating your own digital phone library was never easier. No need to save each employee's phone and keep it up to date at all times. All your contacts are gathered in one place, including any contact who’s not an employee - for example all clients, and work contact in facilities.

In this section we will go over the following:

Activating the Directory

To activate the Directory, click Directory on your sidebar and click activate directory.

Customer Success Managers Tip: Keep in mind that all the users, regardless of their Smart Groups will be able to access the Directory in their smartphones once it is activated in the dashboard. What users see however can be managed through the Directory Settings.

Work Contacts

Use the Work Contacts tab to add people that do not belong to your company's app.

This is the place to add more work contacts that are not app users, like reception, emergency contacts, clients, and more! A Work Contact doesn’t have access to the app.

To add a work contact:

  1. Click Directory on your sidebar.

  2. Click the Work Contacts tab.

  3. Click add a contact.

  4. Complete the contact's details.

  5. Click save contact.

Real-life example:
A security company that we work with, created work contacts for all the clients in the different sites, and add an address, phone number, and gate code to the site.

The Directory Settings

The Directory Settings allow you to decide how your users will use the directory and to which information they will have access. To get to the settings tab, enter the directory and navigate to the options tab, and select settings.

Once inside the setting there are three options, to display users in the mobile app, Mobile Users Viewing Permissions, and Information Visibility. Let's go over these below!

Displaying Users in the App

To display users in the app make sure the display users in the mobile directory option is toggled on. If you do not want users' information to be visible to you and would like to use only Work Contacts, you can toggle this option off.

Mobile Users Viewing Permissions

The mobile user's options allow admins to choose whether mobile users are able to view users in the directory, whether they can only view with other users who meet specific criteria, or if there are certain users they will never be able to see. Below we will go over the different options.

Mobile Users Can View Anyone

This option allows users to view other users in the directory.

Mobile Users Can Not View Anyone

By choosing this option, a mobile user will not be able to view anyone in the directory except users who meet certain criteria. Here you have two options:

  • Option 1: Except with users with the same - Here you can choose from the dropdown criteria that the other user needs to match in order for them to be able to view each other's contact for example position. This corresponds to the Custom fields selected in their user profile. When using this option users will only be allowed to view the contacts of those with the same custom fields.

For example: if we have a company with locations\work sites you may want users to only see other users from their location\site in the directory. Setting these settings to be mobile users can not view users who except those with the same location\site will allow users to only view those from their location\site. Take a look at how this looks below.

  • Option 2: Except with specifically selected users - Here you can choose selected only users with specific users with whom users will be able to chat.

For example You may choose to allow them to view only direct managers and nobody else. Take a look at how this looks below.

Mobile users can not view

This option allows you to select users that will not be able to be viewed in the directory. For example, you may not want the owner of the company or higher executives to be displayed in the directory. Any users you select here will not be displayed in the directory.

Information Visibility

This allows you to decide which information will be displayed in the directory for users to see. You can easily uncheck the information you don’t want to be displayed in the directory. For example, you may not want the user email to appear in the directory you can easily uncheck the email field.

In the example below you can see I unselected all the options besides phone number, email, and position and only these will be displayed in the directory. To the right, I can always see an example of how this will look in the app itself.

Customer Success Managers Tip: The information available in this list is based on the Custom Fields created in the user profile. You probably set this up before adding your users!

Knowledge Base

Easily connect your employees with information by creating custom libraries for instruction manuals for how to perform their duties at the client's location, client-related files, policies regarding safety, and much more.

In the Knowledge base, you can create separate sections for each site\client\facility or topic with each containing folders, text, links, or documents. This gives you complete control when organizing all the information inside your Knowledge Base

Now let's take a look at how to use the knowledge base!

In this section we will go over:

Now let's take a look at how to use the knowledge base!

Step by Step: Activating the Knowledge Base

Step 1: Navigate to the left sidebar and to the add new feature button

Step 2: Add a Knowledge Base

Step 3: Name the Knowledge Base

Step 4: Save Changes

Customer Success Managers Tip: Not only can you keep all the information in one place, but you can also create as many knowledge bases as you need. If you are part of a larger company with different departments you could even create a knowledge base for each department.

Step by Step: Adding a Section Folder

Once you have activated the Knowledge Base you will want to add Section Folders. These will serve as the base to which you will then add SubFolders. We recommend spending some time planning how you envision your knowledge base looking prior to setting it up. This will help to get things organized exactly how you want.

To add a Section folder navigate to the bottom left corner to the + add folder button. Then, add and name the folder. In the example below I added a section called “Company Information”

Step by Step: Adding a Folder to a Section

Once you have added all your section folders you need to add subfolders to these sections. This allows you to keep things extra organized. Later on, you will add all the information or knowledge you want into these subfolders.

To add a folder to a section select the section you would like to add to, and then click on the blue + Add button to the right of the section and select add folder. In our example below I added two folders called Company Policies and Company Documents to the Section folder named Company Information.

How to add Text, Links, Files, or Folders to a Subsection Folder

Once you have added Sections and Subsection folders, it's time to start adding in your information. This can be done in the form of text, links, files, or even additional folders (to which you can add text links and files).

To add any of these enter the folder you wish to add them to and select the blue + Add Button and select which type of information you want to add.

Now let's go over how each of these looks!

Text: When adding text a window will pop up allowing you to type any information you would like. Simply copy and paste the information and press save changes. In the example below I have copied and pasted the company policy to the text box.

Links: Links will direct users to information found outside of the Connecteam Platform. This can be a video about the company, a link to the company website, and much more! Simply name and paste the link and then press confirm.

Files: Files are documents that are added to the folders. These can be PDF, Word Documents, Images, or even an excel sheet!

Folders: Folders can be added to subfolders for extra organization; these can be used in a variety of ways. Perhaps you are a company that works with clients, maybe you want to have a subfolder named Clients and a folder for each client. You can then add text to these folders such as information about the client's location, or documents containing the client's past invoices. To add a folder simply go to the blue + Add button and then select add folder and name then name the folder.

Customer Success Managers Trip: Did you make a mistake and accidentally create things in the wrong order? No problem! No matter what the content is - a folder, text, link, or document. It can always be moved by selecting the gray button to the left and dragging and dropping it into the correct order.

If you need to move a file text or link to another folder this can also be done by hovering over the 3 buttons on the right side and selecting move to a new folder and then moving it to the relevant folder.

Searching for Information Inside the Knowledge Base

Now that you have set up your knowledge base it may seem a little daunting and you may wonder how will I or my users remember where to locate the information I have added. Do not worry, here at Connecteam we thought about that and created a powerful search bar within the Knowledge base. Simply search for anything in a library by typing a keyword in its search bar and the options will appear below.

See, with Connecteam's Knowledge base you really can organize and store all your information however you would like all in one place!


Summary

In this article we went over everything you would need as a security company to get connecteam communication hub set up and customized to meet your company's needs. While setting up and adapting to a new system might bring challenges and periods of adjustment for you and your employees here at Connecteam we are always here to help.

You can always reach out to our LIVE support team 🙋 (at the bottom right corner of your screen). They reply in under 5 mins to ANY question!

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