Between changes in office technology, global health concerns and shifting trends in business communication there have been a lot of changes to how business conferencing is being handled between organizations. Some organizations have opted to continue ad hoc conferencing with each employee working remotely from their home offices while many have returned to the office in full force for a more traditional approach.
If your organization is of the latter then you need to stay on top of your game by utilizing the best software and conference room technology for business communication. You will want your internal meetings to run smoothly and your video-conferences unimpeded by disruptions by hardware or internet issues.
86% of employees and executives say that the lack of effective collaboration and communication are the main causes for failures in the workplace. Improvements to internal communication can improve your organization’s productivity by as much as 25%. Keeping your global team up to date with organizational and project changes not only increases productivity but also cuts costs.
Of course not all meetings are for internal communication. You need to stay in contact with vendors, business partners and clients. Keeping in close contact with regular communication lessens the chance of errors in your workflow and in regards to clients helps you stay on top of their feedback and satisfaction. Video communication adds more to the conversation and gives a more personalized and interactive approach to communication.
The following is a breakdown of conference room technologies and how they can help you and your organization to maintain a high level of communication and productivity with a professional touch. We will take a look at digital displays and the means for displaying notes and collaborating with colleagues. Of course no conference room would be complete without video-conferencing equipment and software. To tie all of the conference room technology together you need a stable high-speed internet connection with structured cabling. For orchestrating meetings without impeding coworkers we will take a look at team communication for managing conference room usage.
Digital Whiteboards for Better Presentations
Whiteboards have been a staple of conference rooms for as long as there have been conference rooms. It’s the simplest way to share ideas in front of a group to enhance and bring more visual elements to a presentation. With so much data and visual organization tools available it was only a matter of time until engineers found a way to combine these with digital displays without being cumbersome. Interactive whiteboards allow you to share presentations that you can update easily and naturally just like a normal whiteboard. The difference with this new spin on an classic conference room technology now is that you can import diagrams, images, spreadsheets and more to enhance your presentation. You can interact with it using hand gestures or a special marker so that you have something familiar to help you get used to it.
An interactive dashboard lets you have a dedicated device that’s already connected to your data and easily accessible in your conference room. One such example is the Jamboard from Google. You get a 55” display that is fully integrated with Google Workspace (formerly G Suite). Samsung is another brand that creates amazing interactive whiteboards. Their offerings range from 55” to 85” and can be mounted on a wheeled display stand or mounted on your conference room wall.
What’s great about interactive whiteboards is that you can connect users from anywhere to update the display as your proceedings are going on. Depending on the make and model expect anywhere from 20 to 50 available user connections.
Mounted Video Displays
Video displays provide a standard set of connections for giving you a wider range of options for broadcasting multimedia from other devices. Depending on your organization’s needs you might have to switch from showing presentations, to facilitating a video conference to showing today’s breaking news or for reading data from specialized equipment.
This can come in the form of a mounted television screen or a projector. Of course each comes with their own pros and cons. With a fixed mounted video display it is important to manage cabling carefully, keeping things organized for aesthetics as well as safety. Run all fixed cabling inside of walls, ceilings or within cable management.
Conference cameras offer amazing features for conference room technology integration. Unlike the type of webcams that you might get for your personal office or at home these are designed with your entire team in mind. Conference cameras provide 360 degree viewing, capable of showing your entire team at once. With smart technology the camera can shift focus to zoom in and provide mic support whomever the speaker is at any given moment.
That means you will invest in less equipment and cut down on wires while cutting down setup time. These cameras easily connect to your video conferencing software of choice for fast and simple setups.
Video Conferencing Software
Video conferencing software has existed in one form or another for many years but they gained prominence during the global pandemic. Now they are not just an optional form of communication but a permanent fixture in the business world for organizations around the globe. Reported by Twilio, 30% of global companies started using video conferencing for the first time during COVID-19 while 97% of companies say that the pandemic accelerated their adoption of it.
Video conferencing continues to rise (predicted to reach a total value of $9.2 billion by 2027) even with the world returning to normal because it offers so many benefits to the companies that use it effectively. Remote meetings cut business travel costs by 30%. On top of that less time is spent on the meetings with employees noting improved work/life balance.
Sufficient Network Bandwidth For The Conference Room
With the right conference room technology you can deliver video streams in 4K, share documents, pre-recorded videos and share your screen with business associates. For uninterrupted streaming your office needs sufficient bandwidth with priority segregation for audio and video if possible with your equipment.
Good network connections begin with the right ISP package and proper cabling. Structured cabling solutions pick up where your ISP’s equipment is designed to handle all of your hardware systems both current and future. Even if your conferencing configuration is handled via wifi your access points still need the proper structured cabling to support them. For organizations where no amount of downtime in internet service is acceptable you should have a redundant internet service provider with failover.
Conference Room Booking Software
Now that video conferencing is being used by more departments within each organization it has become important to manage their usage effectively to keep teams organized with scheduling meeting times. Conference room booking software solves this and makes it easy to optimize work time with meeting times. Share a booking calendar with the rest of the office real-time tracking.
Conference Room booking software allows you to prioritize meeting types and avoid double-booking. Maybe you need to put sales meetings ahead of team updates or quarterly meetings over interviews. You have the ability to configure your booking software of choice to suit your organization’s needs.
IT Support For Your Conference Room
Making sure that your conferencing experience remains in excellent status requires professional IT support. It starts with structured cabling and on through mounting video displays and all the other equipment needed in your conference. Beyond that you should have either in-house or oncall IT service to aid you should there be some technical problems hindering your conferencing experience. Make sure that all support staff are familiar with your standard operating procedures for resolving said concerns.
Video conferencing is on the rise across the globe as companies strive to improve business communication. In fact the Communication Platform as a Service (CPAS) market is forecasted to reach $17 billion by the end of next year. With the right upgrades to your video conferencing infrastructure your organization could see ongoing savings with less travel expenses and time saved in transit. While you reap the savings your employees get the reward of a more balanced life and more time devoted towards their wellbeing and productivity.