8 ways that video conferencing can improve your business and your life

Image: Video conferencing via Shutterstock

Image: Video conferencing via Shutterstock

Technology has changed the modern office as we know it. Rather than being glued to our phones, we can communicate increasingly effectively over the web. Email, instant messaging and social media allow us to to get our message across in different ways for different audiences. But sometimes it really does help to still be able to look into someone’s eyes and judge their response through body language as well as speech when you are talking to them (and know that the line isn’t going to crackle or get lost at just that moment!).

Once the domain of Big Business only, more and more people are finding that high-quality video conferencing, like Blue Jeans which has just announced its UK expansion, can be as effective as face to face communications.  If your business is in any part dispersed or even global, here are 8 ways that quality video conferencing could help:

Travelling has been eliminated: Do you find yourself having to regularly travel for miles, just to attend a meeting? The whole experience can be a slog, with all the waiting around, travel delays, and time away from work that it entails. Video conferencing means that traveling is almost eliminated entirely. Simply boot up the software, call your colleagues, and have the meeting right there and then, from the comfort of your own office.

Saves businesses money: On the subject of traveling, regular trips to and from meetings can stack up costs quickly. What with plane or train tickets, overnight stays, and food expenses, the costs can outweigh the usefulness of the meeting itself. If you use video conferencing instead, all those costs are instantly wiped out. When that’s the case, the conferencing software can very quickly pay for itself.

Helps restore the work/life balance: Constant traveling is tiring, and employees need time to recover before being able to go out again. If you’re constantly on the road, it’s easy to hit burnout. Video conferencing avoid this by allowing you to hold your meeting from wherever you’re based, keeping you close to home and your home and work lives balanced.

Brings the meeting to you: If your job takes you out and about often, it can be difficult to stay connected with your colleagues back at base. Sure, you can email in or make voice calls, but sometimes they’re not enough to help you stay in touch. Video conferencing only requires that you have a laptop or smartphone with you, so you can stay in touch when you’re on the move. Now, wherever you are, you can bring the boardroom to you.

Brings global colleagues together: Even the smallest business can now be global. Perhaps your vendor is overseas or you are finding customers who ‘get’ your niche product in another continent? Video conferencing means you can contact anyone, any time. Video conferencing brings them into your office and it also gives you the opportunity to meet colleagues face to face that you may never meet face to face. Now everybody can be kept in the loop, regardless of location.

Saves time: In any business, time is a precious commodity. With so many tasks vying for your attention, who wants to attend yet another dull, drawn out meeting? Video conferencing means meetings are lot quicker now, as gathering together online takes much less time than meeting together in person. Attend your meeting, and then get right back to work with little effort on your part. What could be better?

Makes meetings more spontaneous: Need a question answered, or need to hammer out a problem quickly? If you try and contact everybody needed physically, you could lose a lot of time that could be better spent on your project. Instead, video conferencing means you can quickly contact everybody involved, solve your problem, and then get straight back to it. Real life can’t be scheduled, so why should your meetings be?

Makes the home office more feasible: With more people choosing to telecommute, video conferencing is great for keeping home workers in the loop. After all, as long as you can contact your colleagues and have a space to work, does it matter anymore where that space is? Inc say that when video conferencing is ‘democratized’ and made available for everybody, it can improve their work life considerably.

Liz Wiley

Liz Wiley is a freelance writer who is passionate about flexible working and advancing women in business. Liz is a regular contributor to Prowess and other business blogs.

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