How To Create Organizational Units in the Admin Console

How does the organizational structure work?

Initially in your Google Admin console, all your users and devices are placed in a single organizational unit. All settings you make in the Admin console apply to this top-level organization and therefore to all users and devices in your account.

Apply settings to groups of users or devices

To give different settings to a group of users or devices, create an organizational unit beneath your top-level organization. Then move users and devices to that sub-organization. When you make a setting in your Admin console, select the organization. Users or devices in that organization get the new setting. They inherit all other settings from their parent (the larger group they’re part of).

You can let some people in your organization use a feature or service in their managed Google account, but not others. For example, if you’re a G Suite administrator, you might turn on Google Hangouts only for your support team, or you might let only the sales department share public calendars. You can also tailor settings for different Chrome devices. Just group users or devices that have specific requirements into organizational units. Then apply your desired settings to each of those units.

Diagram of the Google Admin console organizational structure

In the picture, Gmail, Hangouts, and Drive are turned on for users in the top-level organization. Users in the sub-organization inherit Gmail and Drive being turned on, but for them, Hangouts are turned off.

Apply settings to one user or device

To change settings for a single user or device, create an organization for just that user or device. A user or device belongs to only one organizational unit and inherits that organization’s settings.

Build a hierarchy

Create as many organizational units as you want—either at the same level or in a hierarchy. Each child inherits settings from its parent, which you can then customize. Changing a setting at a higher level changes the setting for all sub-organizations that inherit that setting. Custom settings, however, remain unchanged.

If you use multiple domains

You can mix and match users from all your domains in an organizational unit. In fact, users in all your domains are initially in the same top-level organization. To change settings for users in a particular domain, create an organization for just those users.

 

How to Create Organizational Units for Users

To add an Organization Unit for users, you must be logged in to an administrator account.

1. From the Admin console Home page, go to  > Directory Organizational units.

Google Admin console left side menu

Admin console side menu to create organizational units

2. Hover over the organization you want to modify and click  Create new organizational unit.

Admin console create organizational units plus sign

3. Enter a name under Name of organizational unit.

4. (Optional) To add a description of the organization, enter it under Description.

5. (Optional) To place the organization under a different parent organization:

  • Under Parent organizational unit, click Edit.
  • Choose a parent organization.
  • Click Done.

6. Click Create.

You can also add an organization by clicking Create new organizational unit at the top left of the Organizational units page.

Related: Google Admin Console: A Beginner’s How-To Guide

 

How to Create Organizational Units for Devices

To add an Organizational Unit for Chrome devices, you must be logged in to an administrator account.

1. From the Admin console Home page, go to Device management Chrome devices.

  • If you don’t see Device management on the Home page, click More controls at the bottom.

Admin console device management on home screen

2. If necessary, at the top, click > to open your organization tree on the left.

3. Hover over the organization you want to place your organization under. Then, click More   > Add sub organization.

Admin console organization more options

4. Enter a name under Name of organization.

5. (Optional) To add a description of the organization, enter it under Description.

6. (Optional) To place the organization under a different parent organization, use the drop-down list.

7. Click Create Organization.

Note: You can’t add an organizational unit for Android devices. Instead, apply Android settings to the device owner’s organizational unit.

 

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