For a long while now the vast majority of the UK population have been working from home, particularly those that are in an office role.
This has also led most of us to taking part in some sort of video conference call over the past couple of years, which you may have mixed feelings about depending on your experience with it so far.
However, we are here to tell you all about the benefits of video meetings, even the ones you may have not thought about thus far and fill you in with why they can be exceptionally important to how your business is run.
The pandemic has opened our eyes to video calling
Video conference meetings were most certainly already being utilised long before the COVID-19 virus forced most of the world to social distance, but it has made businesses of all different shapes and sizes realise how useful they can be.
The principal advantage of a conference calls is that it permits business owners or stakeholders to take part in gatherings without having to be in the same room as others. Video calling allows us to simulate face to face meetings, even in times where it is not possible for workers to be together.
If important business choices have to be made rapidly, a conference call can be set up surprisingly fast, so everybody can enter their thoughts and proposals without leaving their work area or home. This means quick decisions can be reached and agreed upon thanks to the power of video meetings.
On the off chance that your business is hoping to grow, particularly into unfamiliar business sectors, video calling implies you can stay in contact with customers and associates and lead meetings from remote locations. This also means you can save a lot of time and money that would have otherwise been spent on sending employees abroad, should your business need international meetings.
The key positives to understand
While most things from the Coronavirus pandemic era will be better becoming long forgotten about, there are a few developments that are here to stay for all the right reasons. These include virtual meetings and all the benefits of video conferencing that are listed below.
They can help to keep costs low
One thing many new business owners in particular do not consider is the importance of keeping costs low. Of course, the money you’ll need to spend can come from a whole host of different areas but utilising unnecessary travel to meetings can affect your profit margins in the worst possible way.
Video or conference calling is the one thing that will remove this cost, while still enabling you to maintain a personal connection with the other callers. This is what makes video meetings far better than the likes of more traditional phone calls or the use of email. Though, will we speak more about that later.
Makes you more efficient
When you are at the helm of any business venture, the chances are you feel like there’s a thousand different areas that need your attention at any one time. This is a common issue among business owners, especially newer ones that haven’t quite got to grips with the art of multitasking just yet. However, conference calls can help you in this area too.
By utilising video meetings, you can make yourself more efficient in many ways. You will be able to schedule time without having to factor in travel and even use online reminders so that all of your team members know when the meeting is going to take place, even if they are working remotely.
It means more than a phone call or email message
As we have already touched upon, video meetings offer you so much more than the likes of telephone calls and email messages. This is largely due to the fact that you can see the person you are speaking to and establish a more personal connection with them.
For instance, you will be able to see what facial reactions they have towards what you are saying. This goes a long way in making the conversation flow better between the two of you and awards you with less chance of accidental interruptions and the like.
This is a more engaging experience than a phone call could ever be, so opt for video over audio conferencing every time you can. Your team will likely thank you for allowing them to have some personal connections and interactions after all of this time of staying away from each other.
Offers you more room and flexibility
Another advantage of video conferencing is that it offers you an extensive amount of flexibility. Not having to travel to meetings means that people can juggle around work and other responsibilities, all while fitting in a video meeting around it.
This creates a better work life balance for you and your employees, which is something that will make your company a better place to work for many individuals. Having happy workers will mean you also have more hardworking and dedicated staff members, so ensure their communication tools are up to scratch if they are working from home and kit the office space out with video conferencing tools that you will need.
A few things to think about
If all the benefits of conference calling have turned you into a firm believer of the craft, then you should be all good to go and start using them as you wish to. However, first acknowledge the fact that there are one or two things to know before you set off down this path.
Be sure to have the right stuff
This may not need to be pointed out to you, but the more you know the better. There are certain pieces of equipment you are going to need to even take part in video conferencing, never mind utilise it within your own business venture. We are more than sure you’ll know this already, but just in case you don’t, here are the essentials:
- A laptop/ computer
- A webcam (many are built into laptops and PCs these days, so look out for that
- A reliable internet connection
- A comfortable seat to sit in (especially helpful for lengthier meetings)
- A desk or table which can keep your camera well balanced
- A microphone that is good enough quality to allow everyone to hear you loud and crystal clear
The best video meeting apps
Knowing the best application to host your business meeting video calls is essential to having things go well. Different apps within this market often serve different needs, so the answer to your questions will likely be unique to your setup. However, we have come up with the two best products currently available today.
Zoom is possibly the most popular video conferencing application for business meetings. The app itself has plenty of features and comes in at many different price points. A variety of plans based on business size and needs are available, so there is bound to be something for your company here.
If you run a small business venture, we would suggest utilising Zoom’s free model, which millions of people around the world happily use each day. The paid for services are there if you are looking for something more encompassing for your remote teams; the enterprise-level plan includes up to 200 meeting participants, unlimited cloud storage, custom emails, a vanity meeting URL, and more. Though, again, if you are a smaller sized venture, the freemium model will do you justice here.
Skype for business
Microsoft’s popular Skype service is perfect for the larger companies out there looking to communicate with one another remotely. It has many different business features, such as allowing up to 250 attendees in a meeting, connection with other Skype users, and even virtual whiteboard features, which can be useful for bouncing ideas around and taking quick notes.
If you are a small business owner however, this could still be the right video conferencing solution for you. The free version of Skype is a solid tool for teams with less than 10 members and is a simple way to make free conference calls from your computer, phone, or tablet at any time you like.
You need to lead meetings in the right way
You need to know how to conduct video calls in the proper way if you are the leader of your respective business venture. Approach all meetings with positivity and be well-mannered when speaking to others; doing this will set a nice atmosphere for everyone, even when approaching the bigger topics at hand.
Best of luck with your future online conference calls, it would seem that they are here to stay due to the many benefits we have all learned they provide us with. Keep your business connected in the right way, take this modern approach and create more free time for yourself and others, all while saving money too.