When businesses around the world shut down due to the Covid 19 epidemic, many turned to video conferencing programs to stay afloat.
Although this solution was initially considered a short-term solution, many companies, especially those who were initially concerned about the technology, seem to be skeptical about its performance.
As more organizations inevitably develop work-at-home strategies, it is fair to assume that video conferencing will become even more common.
Even before the general corona crisis, there was a gradual acceptance of video conferencing. In fact, the corporate video conferencing market was projected to reach $ 23 billion before Covid 19, but that figure is likely to have grown significantly over that time.
According to recent studies, many corporate users say that this increases productivity saves time on project completion, and facilitates teamwork.
In this article, we have compiled a detailed description of the pros and cons of using video conferencing in business to help you determine if this approach is right for your organization.
The benefits of video conferencing
Less spending, more savings in video conferencing
One of the things we learn in today’s world is that a lot of the money we spend on travel to conferences, seminars, and meetings in other cities and countries is unnecessary. Many of these collisions can be done remotely through software such as Zoom or Skype.
Of course, this is not always the case, but studies have shown that video conferencing is a better alternative. Finally, video conferencing allows you to spend less and save more when communicating with customers, employees, and contacts.
Productivity in times of uncertainty
Let’s be honest: There is a lot of uncertainty in the global economy right now. Who knows what life will be like in the next six months when you consider everything from air travel to social distancing guidelines? Unfortunately, if there’s one thing the private sector hates, it’s uncertainty.
So among the myriad unknowns, performance is difficult for businesses (both small and large). At such times, video conferencing can be a great way for you to make sure everyone stays in touch and stays productive when the workplace closes.
Collaborate with staff in video conferencing
It may be unthinkable, but video conferencing can make it easier for employees to collaborate. As you look at the myriad descriptions of vendor products, you will see many insights that show how the program improves communication and supports teamwork.
But there are many other benefits as well, including document sharing, project coordination, and even brainstorming. For example, because everyone is behind their computer at the same time, team members can instantly share and work on a document, which is somewhat difficult to do in an office environment. When things go awry, employee collaboration only improves with corporate video conferencing.
How can you communicate based on a planned online stream? Video conferencing offers face-to-face experiences comparable to face-to-face communication. In a situation where many people are not close to each other, video conferencing fills the void and makes colleagues and customers feel more intimate, even if this intimacy is achieved with the help of a fiber optic cable and a high-resolution computer monitor.
Globalization of business
Previously, a small company had little chance of competing on the world stage. The Internet has changed all that because now any business can try to attract customers around the world.
Video conferencing is just one of the many digital tools available to you to achieve this goal, enabling you to establish your international standing by talking to clients or professionals anywhere on the planet.
Recent surveys have shown that people who work from home are happier and more productive. Instead of spending time in boring workrooms, professionals can spend more time working in the comfort of their own homes. In an age where employee retention is under the microscope, one of the benefits of video conferencing is that companies can keep their employees satisfied through telecommuting.
Disadvantages of video conferencing
Have you ever heard of “zoom fatigue”? This seems to be a fact that happened after the Covid 19 crisis. People get tired after a few days of talking to the camera and attending a video conference. In fact, according to Liz Foslien and Molly West Duffy in the Harvard Business Review, the phenomenon is becoming increasingly apparent as the term has received a lot of attention in Google Trends in March and April.
Therefore, the more you use corporate video programs, the greater the risk of employees feeling overwhelmed and depressed due to the greater focus required in video conferencing. Think of it this way: In a physical session, you can always look out the window for a moment. However, in a zoom session, this is impossible because it will seem that you are either not paying attention or you are bored.
Even if the company or employee has the most reliable and up-to-date equipment, the internet connection can always be disrupted. When this happens, everything is delayed and causes frustration and confusion. This probably explains why any recent job postings you see require you to have a strong internet connection.
Staff training in video conferencing
Unfortunately, not everyone is used to the video conferencing service. This is not just an age problem, as many young people also find it difficult to use the software. In general, the use of video conferencing in the workplace requires staff training.
This is necessary because everyone must be able to adapt to the new conditions. At the same time, it has its drawbacks because it requires planning, resource allocation, and increased management.
Most of our communication is said to be non-verbal, meaning that we use body language and body language to convey our message. Sure, you can see the other side with the camera, but you can’t make face-to-face physical contact. Experts recommend doing simple tasks such as hand gestures or smiling at the camera to eliminate some of the problems of distance communication.
Benefits of Video Conferencing Software
Organizations have various free options to provide video support to users such as FaceTime, Skype, and Facebook Messenger. However, free tools may not support all of the end users’ communication needs, including page sharing, chat, file sharing, security, and content control. These requirements reduce the options available, but some popular products include Microsoft Teams, Zoom, Webex, GoToMeeting, and Slack.
When an organization chooses integrated communications software (UC), it can see how a paid subscription product can go beyond traditional video conferencing software and offer capabilities beyond video and audio.
Video conferencing software can benefit organizations in the following ways.
Meetings transcription service
Virtual meetings, such as presenting sales products, reviewing current financial performance, negotiating contracts, or reviewing employees, generally lead to practical steps and next steps. Actions may include creating a quote to send to the customer, or an employee modifying the contract. These are usually handwritten or digital notes. However, with frequent virtual meetings due to work at home, employees may have difficulty obtaining this information, especially if many attendees attend the meetings.
Many video conferencing operating systems, including GoToMeeting, Zoom, and Microsoft Teams, offer session transcription features to prevent these problems. These features convert the spoken word into text and make the text available to meeting participants. This feature can eliminate the need for an administrative assistant or a note-taker.
Translation services for multilingual sessions
Some business meetings require that people meet and interact virtually across international borders. In some of these sessions, people who speak different languages may interact with each other, which can be challenging if a discussion occurs. If current employees are not multilingual, organizations can hire translators, which increases costs and complexity, or they may have translation errors.
Organizations have different options for holding multilingual meetings. Microsoft Teams and Skype make this possible for those who communicate with each other via text. However, this may not be enough in face-to-face meetings.
For meetings (whether video or audio), organizations can use the Azure Speech Translation service with Microsoft Teams. This feature transcribes spoken words and translates them in real-time to see or hear. This enables multilingual communication in meetings and also supports more than 30 languages.
Ability to share files and pages
Modern video conferencing software also offers the ability to share user content and pages with one or more meeting participants. Screen sharing has become very important because employees sometimes need the remote help of their team members.
Another use is the need to provide content, which requires users to display files or data to meeting participants. Employees can also collaborate on shared documents at the moment or by sharing a page.
Disadvantages of video conferencing software
Despite the many benefits of video conferencing software, these platforms continue to challenge organizations. Video conferencing software raises the following concerns.
Lack of personal interaction in video conferencing
Video conferencing sessions can seem impersonal. Employees communicate with the screen even when they see people’s faces. Lack of personal communication and face-to-face contact can make it difficult for employees to get to know colleagues, managers, or customers and build personal relationships with them.
In 2020, hackers took advantage of the opportunity created by the increasing use of video conferencing and increased their efforts to infiltrate and disrupt meetings. In particular, Zoom encountered several disruptions in public meetings via Internet trolls, causing many IT executives to worry about the security of internal meetings.
After these incidents, security was given more attention. Many video conferencing programs have guarantees that only authorized attendees can attend private business meetings; Therefore, guests are not automatically allowed to attend the meeting without the permission of the organizers. These features have helped alleviate some important security concerns.
So how do you determine if this technology is right for your team?
Some aspects need to be considered, such as whether you have high-priority customers outside of your area, employees who travel a lot, or whether your company’s IT infrastructure is up to date.
One thing is for sure, though: video conferencing is the future of all businesses.