By now, most of the readers of this blog have been on countless (yes, I bet you can’t really keep track anymore!) video calls. I certainly have been almost living on Sangoma Meet. By the way, I just did a podcast with Mo Nezarati, EVP of Products and Strategy, about Sangoma Meet, if you want to listen to it.
I definitely see the benefits of the video calls, especially in today’s environment. But someday, hopefully relatively soon, we’ll be back to normal. Are these video calls we’re having today bound to continue, or are they some ‘fad’ that in 10 years we’ll laugh about?
My perspective is that they are going to become a part of our business environment, just like email or voice phone calls are. There are benefits that are just too hard to ignore.
From my almost 5 months of experience, these are the top 3 benefits of video conferencing:
First: seeing somebody establishes much more of a ‘connection’ than by having a voice call.
I (used to) travel a lot, especially to see customers and to visit employee locations. Right now, seeing people on a video call is definitely better than just a voice call or voice conference call. And even when business travel resumes, you can’t be everywhere all the time. So, even if I visited a location last week, and this week I want to do a conference call with my colleagues there, I would definitely do it via a video call.
Second: most video call systems now include video sharing, where you can share documents on the screen and everyone can see them.
This collaboration element of a video call is huge! For example, recently I went over the marketing plan with my team. Doing this via sharing the document on Sangoma Meet was much more interactive and collaborative than if I was saying “go to page 27 now” and then saying “in the upper right we have “xyz”. I simply circled what I wanted to highlight and discuss. I also think this keeps people engaged better on a call like this. Maybe my team faked me out really good, but I felt like they were better engaged than if we just had this on a large conference call.
And third: from an economic perspective, this certainly will help keep travel costs down.
While there is no substitute for a face to face meeting, sometimes there will be reasons where meeting on a video call would be better. I mean sometimes there are meetings where you fly in, have a 2 hour meeting, and then leave. If you haven’t seen the person in a long time and/or if this is a deal closing, sure there are reasons to do this. But if it’s a check-in meeting, maybe you check in half the time in person, and half the time via a video call. Or what about the sending 4 people to a meeting. Maybe you send 2, and the other 2 people that are there for specific support just attend via a video call. This enhances productivity because the 2 people don’t have to travel.
Anyway, my point on all this is that businesses now are seeing the T&A expense line drastically down, and business continuing “OK”, so it likely won’t come back to what it was for a long time, simply because the CFO can now make a case that that level of spending is not necessary.
If you haven’t been using video collaboration, or just want to try a new one, please visit https://meet.sangoma.com.