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Add a group to another group

This page is for administrators. To manage groups for your own account, visit Google Groups help.

Sometimes it's helpful to add one group to another. For example, if you have a group for each team that’s part of a larger department, you can save the time it takes to individually add each member to a larger department group.

Larger groups are called parent groups. Added groups are nested, child, or subgroups.

Why nest groups

You might nest groups to:

  • Have messages you post to the parent group posted to the child—You can do this if the child's posting permissions allow it.
  • Change members of the parent group by editing the child—This works if multiple parents contain the same child group.

Tip: To add and remove members automatically based on criteria such as department or location, see Manage membership automatically with dynamic groups.

How nested group permissions work


The following rules apply to nested groups:

Rule Description
Members of child groups are not direct members of parent groups

Because child group members don't belong to parent groups, they:

  • Can’t leave the parent group.
  • Don’t appear as members of the parent group.
  • Can’t change their membership settings in the parent group.
Child group members inherit some permissions from parent groups If a Google Docs file is shared with a parent group, child group members can also access the doc.
Child group members may post to the parent group If the parent group allows all members of the group to post, members of the child group can also post to the parent group.
Child group members may receive messages posted to parent groups If you want child group members to receive messages posted to the parent group, set the Who can post permission for the child group to All organization members or a wider permission setting, such as Anyone on the web. For details, go to Set permissions for managing members and content.

Otherwise, child group members may not receive messages posted to the parent group.

Add a group to your group

  1. Sign in to your Google Admin console.

    Sign in using your administrator account (does not end in

  2. In the Admin console, go to Menu and then Directoryand thenGroups.
  3. On the Groups list, point to the group that will become the parent group.
  4. In the parent group row, click Add members.
  5. Enter the name of the group you want to add to the parent group.
    Note: Use commas to separate multiple group names.
  6. Click Add to group.

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