Thank you for making the leap into Ryver! Whether you’re communicating with a team as part of a company, project, interest group, family, community, class, or… anything, Ryver is the place where your team can live and share instant messages, discussions, and files.
This guide is designed to help you:
- Get your team up and running
- Get the most out of Ryver
For specific questions, you can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org, chat with us on our support site (support.ryver.com), or choose “Send Feedback” from Ryver (in the drop-down menu at the top of the left navigation bar).
Here is a step-by-step checklist for setting up your Ryver account and onboarding your Users:
- Create a Core Group
- Create “Starter” Teams and Forums
- Invite the rest of your Members and Guests
- Follow up & Assist with Onboarding
- Ongoing: Periodically Introduce New Tips and Best Practices
* Take a look at our new Ryver Task Manager! Learn more here.
Open vs. Private
As the Ryver Organization creator or administrator, the first and most important thing to do is set the relative openness/privacy of the organization. To do that, it’s important to understand Members-vs-Guests and Open Forums-vs-Private Teams.
There are two types of Users in Ryver, Members and Guests.
- Members have access to all Open Forums. They can also create their own Open Forums and Private Teams. They can see and communicate privately through Direct Messages with all other Members and any Guest with whom they share a Private Team. Common examples are employees of an organization, Members of a club and university faculty.
- Guests, on the other hand, only have access to the Open Forums to which they have been specifically invited. They cannot create their own Open Forums or Private Teams. They can only see, and communicate through Direct Messages with those Members and Guests with whom they share an Open Forum or Private Team. In this way, you can feel confident inviting Guests on a “need-to-know” basis without risking exposing sensitive information or disrupting conversations that need to remain confidential, smaller, or more focused. Examples of Guests might include temporary contributors, contractors, vendors, customers, board members, students, and other individuals that have some kind of non-employee/non-member relationship to your company or organization.
Ryver has three main places for people to communicate:
- Open Forums:
Open for all Members to participate
(Open to any Guests who have been invited to that Forum)
- Private Teams
Private group communication for those who have been invited.
(Open only to Members and Guests who have been invited to join the team.)
- Direct messages
Private communication between 2 Users.
(Members will see all other Members and any Guests on common Forums/Teams.)
(Guests will only see Members and Guests who belong to Forums and Teams that the Guest also belongs to.)
Open Forums vs. Private Teams
Private Teams are structured and used just like Open Forums, except they are invite-only. Members and Guests who are not invited to join a Private Team will not be able to see that the team exists.
Depending on your needs, you might choose any mix of Open Forums and Private Teams. For instance, a small company with a flat organizational structure and an open culture might thrive using only Open Forums. Conversely, an organization with distinct operational units, geographic offices, or those handling sensitive information might be better suited using Private Teams for “need-to-know” discussions while company-wide topics are discussed in Open Forums.
Let’s Get Started!
1. Get familiar with Ryver
Check out our Ryver User Guide for an overview of what Ryver has to offer for all users. You might even want to play around a little on your own with creating a test forum or team and adding some messages and topics. You can always delete that forum or team when you’re done playing.
2. Create a Core Group
Initially, it helps to keep it simple. We recommend that you start rolling out Ryver first by choosing a small, “core” group of people to get familiar with Ryver and start experimenting with using it as their day-to-day workflow, such as using it instead of email and instant messaging within that group of people. The ideal core group would be an existing 3-7 person team who already works closely together on a daily basis.
Using Ryver’s “invite” feature, invite the members of your core group to join Ryver. Monitor which people have joined and ping any stragglers until they do. This is very important; if just one member declines to accept their invitation, the others will not be able to fully adopt a new workflow.
Once your core team has accepted their invites and joined your account, the easiest way to get going is to just jump in! Over the course of a week, rather than emailing or instant messaging amongst the core group, urge the group to commit to using Ryver to communicate. The beauty of Ryver is that, as you use it, you’ll intuitively figure it out!
3. Create “Starter” Teams and Forums
Your Ryver automatically comes with one Open Forum called “All Hands,” which serves as the primary way to communicate to all Member users. Any time you invite a Member, they will be automatically added to the All Hands forum and have it pinned in their navigation bar. Members are forced to be “joined” to this forum, so it is a good place to make announcements.
Note: You can invite guests to All Hands, but be very selective…once a guest has access to an Open Forum, they also gain Direct Message access to your Member users, and this cannot be undone.
Once you have gotten the hang of Ryver and figured out the basics, and are ready to invite more members from your organization, create a “Ryver Tips/FAQ” Open Forum. This serves as the place where all new Members can go to familiarize themselves with Ryver. You can provide links to the Ryver tutorial videos and guides, share tips that you have picked up yourself, and knowledge can be shared amongst your users to get them up to speed quickly.
Some Ideas for Structuring Forums & Teams
As your organization continues to use Ryver, the number of Private Teams and Open Forums will grow organically. To get the ball rolling, many admins have found it helpful to create a structure of Open Forums and Private Teams for others to build upon. Common approaches include:
Organizational-based Forums & Teams
This is a very typical type of team structure for businesses; most companies create a different Private Team for each department, e.g. Sales, Dev, Public Relations.
Project/Client-Based Forums & Teams
When multiple departments are working together on a project or client, creating a separate Private Team for each often makes sense. If it’s a company-wide initiative or general news, then an Open Forum would allow all to discuss.
Social Media-Based Forums & Teams
It’s a social world these days, and our Zapier integrations make it simple to keep track of what others are saying about you and your competitors.
Create your own Zaps, or use our Guided Zaps widget to do things like create a new Ryver chat for all of your organization’s Twitter mentions, Instagram tags, or news of your top competitors.
Have Gmail emails come into specific Teams or Forums to monitor and discuss, such as sales or support inquiries.
Some organizations have unusual structures that lend themselves to unique approaches. For instance, universities have used a mix of Ryver Teams and Forums for the following:
- Research teams
- Study groups
- Alumni groups
- Volunteer programs
- Community outreach
Tips for Onboarding Your Core Team
- On day one, try to do most of your communicating in Open Forums. This will give everyone access to the ongoing discussions, and allow all to learn together.
- Create Topics in the Ryver Tips/FAQ Forum that include:
- Ryver User’s Guide.
- Links to the desktop apps (Windows, Mac, Linux) and mobile apps (Android, iOS)
- Ryver Tutorials, Ryver support site link and other ideas
- Using topics rather than chatting allows for threaded Q&A about each help topic.
- Encourage your core team to play around with Chat and Topics, so they can experience the difference. Use Chat for immediate, random communication, just as you would for texting or instant messaging. Use Topics for threaded, ongoing discussions that pertain to a particular topic.
- Apps: Have them download and install Ryver apps (Mac, Windows, Linux, iOS, Android)
- Eddy: Show your users how to use Eddy, our tireless and always cheerful Help Bot.
- Files: Show your users how to upload and share files.
- Activity Indicators: Be sure your users know when and where they will receive these.
- @ Mentions: Teach your users how to use @ mentions to ensure that people receive notifications and never miss information that’s specifically meant for them.
- Search: Show your users how to use Ryver’s global Search feature.
- Hashtags: Teach your users how to use hashtags.
3. Invite the Rest of Your Members and Guests
Once your core group has the hang of it, it’s time to invite the rest of your organization.
We suggest automatically pinning the Ryver Tips/FAQ Forum you created to the left navigation bar when you invite them so that your new users see it immediately when they log in to Ryver. (You can do this individually or in bulk.)
Going forward, you can manage users from the “Admin Settings” option in the menu at the bottom of the left navigation bar.
Other Admin Options
From “Admin Settings”, you can see all of your current members and guests, deactivate users, re-send invites, and change a user’s role.
If you deactivate a user, they will no longer be able to log into your Ryver account, but they will remain in the User Manager and you can re-activate them later if you wish. Their content will remain in the system, so all of their topics, comments and chat messages will still be visible.
Ryver does not allow you to completely delete a user. You can only deactivate them.
Creating Additional Admins
To share the responsibility of managing users, you can promote another member to also be an Admin of your Ryver account. Once you do so, he or she will also be able to access the Admin Settings menu and invite new members to your Ryver account. You can promote a guest to be a member, but you can’t directly promote a guest to Admin. Once they are a member, you can change their role again, and Admin will be one of the options.
An additional option you have for Private Teams is to give Members Can Invite rights allowing them to invite Guests to that particular Team only.
4. Follow Up & Assist with Onboarding
As with the process and tips described above for inviting and helping your core team come up to speed, it will be important for you to ping individuals who don’t readily accept their Ryver invitations to join your account.
Some people love to try out new technologies, whereas others require some handholding (you know who they are!), so, again plan on spending some time helping those who need it.
Coming to us from Slack? Use our Slack import tool to migrate all users, channels, and channel messages, files and topics. The Slack-to-Ryver import tool is located in the Settings menu at the bottom of the Ryver left navigation bar. Only admins can access this tool.
Currently, the Slack to Ryver import does not bring over any Direct Messages or Private Groups. Due to security, the Slack team admin does not have access to everyone else’s DMs and Private Groups through the Slack API. Slack posts will get imported as both a Ryver Chat and Topic. We insert a chat message with a preview, to keep the continuity of your imported chat discussion. The chat message contains a link to the full topic, which resides in the TOPICS tab for that forum.
If you have a file in a Slack channel with comments on it, we will turn that into a topic, with that file as an attachment. We then port over the comments underneath that topic. You will still see the file upload in your chat history as well. Slack Restricted Accounts and Guests both get converted to guests in Ryver.
Since Ryver has no restrictions on how many forums or teams a guest can be added to, we don’t need two forms of restricted users.
When the import is completed, users are not automatically sent invites. We give you a chance to review the data and deactivate users if you wish. You can then return to the import view and send out bulk invites when you are ready.
We’re Here to Help!
We are here to help! Here are all the ways you can reach us:
- Visit our support site
- Chat with a representative on our website
- Use the “Send Feedback” widget in the Ryver app’s navigation bar
- Email us: email@example.com
- Tweet at us: @RyverApp
Thank you, and enjoy your Ryver journey!