Any business with multiple offices is coping with the increasing cost of inter-company travel. Many are turning to video conferencing as a substitute. The most successful implementations discover this has a positive impact in a number of areas. These may include cost reduction, carbon emissions reduction, improved productivity, speed of decision-making, and employee work-life balance.
Reduced travel expense has often been touted as the major factor in decisions to invest in video conferencing systems. It costs a lot of money and a lot of time to travel to meet people. Imagine that you have to conduct an important meeting for your company with different people who are dispersed over different places in the world, thousands of miles apart. To bring them together around a table, you need to consider and deal with so many hassles: travel expenses, availability of flight seats, visas, availability of participants at the scheduled time, accommodation, food etc.
On the other hand, some say video conferencing can actually be more efficient than regular face-to-face conferences since the meetings often have a defined start and end time with people calling in from different locations, so a more focused discussion and less chitchat is likely. And, the organizing can be done over email or instant messaging.
Since most communication is nonverbal, video conferencing fills a huge gap that has long existed within organizations using audio alone. A video conference helps managers, knowledge workers, salespeople, and customer-service employees to better convey and understand information that is being shared within projects or engagements.
Sample uses for Video Conferencing
- Convene impromptu meetings between co-workers.
- Utilize video interviews for recruiting.
- Enable your IT help desk to remotely diagnose problems.
- Empower the sales team with video sales presentations.
- Enhance the results of project meetings.
- Effectively administer your business remotely.
- Use for courtroom testimony of somebody who does not wish to appear face-to-face.
Exploring the options
There are a number of options from which to choose your video conferencing platform.
1. Web Real Time Communication (WebRTC)
WebRTC enables peer to peer video, audio, and data communication between two web browsers. This allows for video calling, video chat, and peer to peer file sharing entirely in the web browser, with no plugins.
WebRTC is currently supported by Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, and Opera
When face-to-face meetings are not practical, WebRTC may be the best option available for your video communication. It’s easy and quick to setup while retaining the personal touch and keeping your participants engaged. Will this be your next choice?
2. Collaboration Meeting Manager (CMM)
Video is an amazing connection and collaboration tool. Delivering successful objectives in communication and collaboration involves ensuring that users have the right tools to connect when and where they want. An easy to use, reliable and secure service is a key component. Within the service there could be the requirement for audio connections, video conferencing, file sharing, whiteboard, being able to connect with others who may be using other services, and much more.
This sophisticated voice, video and web collaboration solution is integrated within the NEC UNIVERGE 3C software platform. It equips your employees with the tools they require to improve efficiency and stay informed. Further, it lowers spending by reducing the need for travel.
- Improves teamwork among colleagues in geographically dispersed locations
- Enables real-time sharing and exchange of information between co-workers and customers
- Provides quick and easy scheduling and access to meetings
- Offers a multi-party video-conferencing display to enable viewing of meeting participants
- Enables the ability to share Microsoft® Office® documents, PDFs, pictures and videos plus more
- Offers white-boarding collaboration
- Reduces travel costs through enhanced collaboration capabilities
- Increases employee efficiency and productivity
- Operates across premise, cloud or hybrid environments
3. Room-Based Video Conferencing
Room-based video conferencing solutions are usually hardware solutions that are installed, fixed and configured in your boardrooms or meeting rooms.
Room-based video conferencing comprises of an endpoint unit, which communicates over the standards based protocol, H.323, for communication across IP networks. This means that your unit would be compatible to communicate with most other video conferencing solutions on the same protocol.
They require no additional software or hardware, as the codec is the hardware that communicates with other endpoints and transmits video data and signals.
- All-in-one system that does not require additional software or hardware
- Host a conference directly from your standalone unit
- Advanced technology which reduces bandwidth usage and stabilizes video transmission
- May require installation or IT management
- Fixed solution – not portable