Wednesday, 22 March 2006

Taking a Closer Look at Video Conferencing

Video conferencing is defined as real-time audio and video meetings, sessions and discussions that are conducted between two or more users in different locations. Video conferencing technologies have become a blessing for small and large businesses that have their operations in different parts of the world. It has become easier to engage with employees with this strategic communication tool and there are other benefits associated with it as well. Numerous industries have adapted to this method of communication because it has simplified procedures of training and increased productivity. There are endless ways in which a business can use video conferencing as long as it's done right.

There is some equipment that's needed for conducting a video conference such as video cameras, a high-speed internet connection and proper software installed on a computer. With the right equipment, video conferencing doesn't take up a lot of time as opposed to an in-person conference. A video conference will only take up a couple of minutes whereas an in-person conference may require several hours of traveling, setting up a conference room and other preparations. Regular conferences can be very costly, especially if the attendees live in different parts of the country. The cost of flying and accommodation can put a huge hole in a business's budget.

Video conferencing can aid a business in saving thousands of dollars that would have been spent otherwise. At most, it will cost a couple of hundred dollars, even if it's set up by a professional. Thus, the potential savings offered by this method are huge for a business that has conferences on a regular basis. There is nothing lacking in a video conference except for the fact that you cannot formally shake hands with the attendees. Apart from that, the images are crystal clear so people feel as if they really are in the same room.

In fact, viewing presentations becomes easier for every individual because they can see them on their screen. Thus, they have the best seats in the house, unlike an actual conference room where some slides may not be clearly visible because of someone sitting in front of you. When using video conferencing instead of in-person conferences, a business ensures that everyone is able to attend without being late. Generally, there is no restriction on the number of people who can attend the conference, but just to be sure, a business should consult with their service provider.

There is no need for anyone to leave the office or get delayed because of traffic as video conferencing can be set up within minutes. This means that these conferences can also be organized on an urgent basis because no travel is required for it. Holding conferences like this is very beneficial for businesses as it allows them to improve efficiency and resolve problems as soon as they surface. There are various types of video conferencing programs and services that can be used by a business, depending on its requirements and needs and operations can be conducted smoothly.