Authored by Malcolm Tatum in Communications
Published on 12-20-2009
Conferencing services in general provide a number of advantages to businesses of all sizes. However, video conferencing offers some benefits that a simple audio or web conference cannot provide. In some instances, video conferencing is easily the most productive and the most cost effective way to accomplish what you have in mind.
One of the immediate benefits of video conference is the marriage of voice and video that makes it possible to not only hear who is speaking, but also to see the speaker. While audio conferencing is fine for many routine meetings, there are times when the need to see attendees as they share comments is very important. One example is in the process of taking a legal deposition. By including video conferencing in the mix, parties who cannot be physically present during the actual deposition have the opportunity to observe the facial expressions and body language displayed by the individual giving the testimony, factors that could help provide valuable clues in how to proceed with the case.
Video conferencing also offers the option of saving a great deal of time and money when help from a remote source is required. One excellent example is found in the manufacturing industry. When a piece of machinery develops a problem that in house resources are unable to resolve, the usual option is to contact the developer of the machine and pay for technicians to be flown in, often at great expense. By using video conferencing equipment, it is possible for remote technicians to view the machine and instruct local personnel in how to take care of the problem, and get the machine back into production. Along with saving a great deal of money on travel and repair expenses, the machinery is back into production much faster, which helps to minimize lost production hours.
Using video conferences are also very helpful for high profile meetings, such as quarterly earnings meetings. While video conferences of yesteryear were usually limited to less than ten connections or less, advances and the use of Video over Internet Protocol has made it possible to provide voice and visual connection to a larger number of locations. Rather than incurring the expense related to gathering shareholders at one common location, or getting by with an audio presentation, the video conference allows all invited attendees to remotely attend the meeting, and participate in a manner very similar to being there. Earnings meetings conducted via video conference means no time wasted in travel, and the costs for the actual meeting are kept to a minimum.
While video conferencing is still the most expensive of all electronic conferencing options, costs have decreased substantially since the beginning of the 21st century. This has made it possible for smaller businesses and non-profit organizations to use this communication resource more frequently, and still remain within their budgets. This includes the cost of video conferencing equipment, site certifications at conference room sites, and the conference fees that apply during a live conference. In the years to come, more innovations in electronic communications will likely reduce the cost even further, making this resource even more cost efficient for organizations of all types and sizes.