Just off flight. 6 pm. Get to the hotel at 7:30. Hit the gym. You’re all set for tomorrow’s meetings — or so you think. But unbeknownst to you, rolling into your phone, through cables deep beneath some incomprehensibly expansive ocean, a message, arriving with its deceptively chipper ding: “Hey, they want to see a presentation tomorrow — can you put something together?”
Technology has made remote collaboration a no-brainer. We have smartphones that we take everywhere, allowing us to connect with anyone at anytime. We use email to reach out to current and prospective clients, communication tools like Slack and Ryver to chat in real-time with team members, and scheduling apps to keep our calendars and meetings up-to-date.
But not all technology is made equal.
Take online video conferencing software, for example. It's tough to find a one-size-fits-all solution that will satisfy a business's need for crisp video, reliable sound quality, and ease of use (joining, participating, screen sharing, annotations, etc).
We've all experienced the pain of online business meetings gone wrong.
A Video Conference Call in Real Life
In a recent Frost & Sullivan survey of C-level executives, respondents were asked about their use of video conferencing during business meetings. The C-level executives cited “improved customer service, faster decision-making, and lowered costs” as prime drivers for their use of video conferencing.
Another recent global survey of 4,737 enterprise video conferencing end-users by Wainhouse Research and Polycom revealed the top benefits of videoconferencing:
- Increased efficiency/productivity (94%). Meetings can be scheduled in minutes, and collaboration can begin with a mouse click whether participants are in the office, working from home, waiting for a flight, or sitting in a hotel room. Meetings via video tend to accomplish more in a shorter amount of time.
- Increased impact of discussions (88%). Unlike conference calls and email, face-to-face discussions enable people to read facial expressions, reactions, gestures and other forms of non-verbal communication in order to develop a real sense of trust. Instead of simply watching, users are more actively involved.
- Expedited decision-making (87%). There’s no need to fly back to the corporate office to regroup and formulate a response. Video conferencing makes it easier for all stakeholders to attend a meeting (instead of waiting days or even weeks to gather in person), which accelerates business processes as a result.
- Reduced travel costs (87%). Previously, this had consistently topped the list of reasons why videoconferencing was being used, showing that users are looking beyond hard cost savings and recognizing how video conferencing can improve how they do business.
The study also showed that the most common use case of videoconferencing is to meet with customers and partners (71%).