Communication is one vital component of any business entity. Everyday, people within organizations exploit all means of communication to transact business with their clients, collaborate with partners, report accomplishments, challenges and plans among each other. To facilitate effective and efficient communication within and among businesses, communication technology continues to improve and surprise us with various innovations.
Meetings nowadays do not require the physical presence of attendees, thanks to video conferencing. Instead of just listening to people talking over the phone, video conferencing allows all participants to see each other, adding face to a voice or a name. The ability to conduct meetings through video conferencing offers a variety of benefits which, as of today are highly recognized by many companies worldwide.
One of the major advantages of using video conferencing technology in the workplace is an increase in overall productivity. For a multi-national company, conducting a worldwide meeting no longer entails asking people to travel 13 hours to reach the company headquarters. With video conferencing technology, everyone can convene and start the event in a matter of minutes and save substantial amount of money normally allocated for travel and accommodation.
Unlike phone calls which can probably work for a meeting of 2-3 people, you can fit into one meeting people from Asia, Europe and America without necessarily bringing them physically together. This also is an opportunity to strengthen bonds with remote colleagues and customers, which can be cemented with personal face to face visits, if opportunity arises.
And because there is little or no travel time involved, this gives the business more time to work on other equally important tasks. Risks related to traveling are also avoided.
Video conferencing is normally meant for large audience. There are certain types of technology coupled with video conferencing that makes a meeting dynamic and interactive. More than just “talking heads” on a projector screen, video conferencing can include flashing of PowerPoint presentations and other visual aids that can be accessed by all the participants. With these features, information flows much more rapidly, interaction between and among attendees are clear and important decisions are made efficiently, which in our competitive world is very much needed.
However, inasmuch as video conferencing technology has been a welcome innovation for a lot of organizations, there are downsides to having this system, as well.
For one, a good video conferencing system may be too costly, especially for small and medium entrepreneurs and companies. Depending on the organization’s requirements, there are systems of lower cost that only have standard features. But remote communication needs to be crisp and clear in order for it to be effective. And this requires a good amount of investment on any company. In the long run, you will get what you pay for. So before going out and buying any video conferencing system in the market, plan and budget well by carefully considering what your company requirements are.
Also, remote communication, no matter how clear can never replace personal face to face interaction. While video conferencing can help save the company money and increase its productivity in various ways, there are still transactions that require face to face and personal communication. Landing client deals would be better achieved with personal touch and eye contact involved. These makes clients feel valued and important.
Video conferencing, just like any technology that you can use in the organization has its ups and downs. Just like any investment you need to thoroughly discuss company requirements weigh in the benefits and consequences to find out what is the most fitting for your organization.