As more employees join the ranks of a dispersed workforce, the way we work together is undergoing a significant transformation that can be greatly aided by video conferencing technology.  A recent Frost & Sullivan whitepaper Leveraging the Power of Video Conferencing for Business: Best Practices for Supporting Collaboration in the 21st Century, explores the business value of video conferencing and provides best practices for implementing a virtual collaboration strategy.  

Frost & Sullivan Data Reveals ROI

Frost & Sullivan (F&S) research from 2011 shows that the number of people working remotely continues to rise. In a recent survey of C-level executives, 84 percent report that some percentage of their employees regularly work outside the office; at nearly one-quarter of organizations, more than 50 percent of all employees do so. Enter video conferencing.  

In another recent F&S study, almost a quarter of respondents report that they use video conferencing every day, and 45 percent rate it as “very important” to their organization. In addition, according to a survey of CXOs, video conferencing is seen as having the biggest ROI when it comes to reducing travel costs, “When air travel is involved, business trips average $1,000 per person; even when employees drive to meetings, the cost can hit hundreds of dollars.” 

The whitepaper also contends that ease-of-use of today’s video conferencing offerings increase their ROI because “employees can launch video calls on the fly, without any help from IT.”  

Best Uses for Video Conferencing 

The F&S whitepaper finds that video conferencing can benefit any number of job roles within all vertical industries, “but some offer more immediate payback than others.” 

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  • Sales and marketing professionals: “Video conferencing can facilitate these initiatives by letting salespeople and marketers identify and target prospects and clients regardless of where they’re located, then meet with them anywhere, anytime, in a real-time environment. Combined with Web conferencing, video can help marketing and salespeople create targeted campaigns, qualify leads, analyze effectiveness, develop and deepen customer relationships, and enable collaboration with sales teams and lines of business.”
  • HR departments: “Video conferencing to roll out information on new policies and procedures, train employees on new software or business processes, announce company-wide information, strengthen corporate bonds, and interview remote applicants.” 

Tips for Choosing a Solution

Frost & Sullivan offers the following guidelines when selecting the best video conferencing tool for your organization.  

  • Reliability: It’s critical that your video conferencing solution work every time for every user, regardless of their network connectivity.
  • Security: As advanced communications applications become more pervasive, it is critical that the technology be secure and easily managed by IT.
  • Ease of use: Features and functions must be intuitive and useful; access must be seamless.
  • Cost effective: To be truly valuable, technology should be available to everyone in the organization, not just senior executives and management—that requires cost-effective options that can be rolled out organization-wide. 

The Frost & Sullivan whitepaper Leveraging the Power of Video Conferencing for Business: Best Practices for Supporting Collaboration in the 21st Century is available for free download through the IT Business Edge. Registration is required.