While the advantages of video conferencing – reductions in travel time and expenditure, reduced carbon footprint, increased productivity, better work/life balance and so on – are well documented it’s often the disadvantages that people focus on. There are some disadvantages of video conferencing, yes, but there are also lots of solutions that have been designed to overcome objections and make video conferencing a better experience and one that is accessible to even the smallest business.
Here we look at some of the main disadvantages of video conferencing and our solutions.
Cost of equipment
The objection: Video conferencing is often perceived as being very expensive to set up, with a big investment in equipment that puts it outside the budget of most smaller businesses.
Our solution: While top quality video conferencing systems are expensive you usually see a return on your investment quickly through the reduction in travel expenses etc. However, it needn’t require a huge investment at all. At Smarter Interactive we have a range of video conferencing solutions from complete systems and managed services to a cloud-based solution that requires only purchase of a piece of software followed by low monthly payments. This puts video conferencing firmly within the reach of every business.
The objection: Video conferencing systems are complicated and require staff to undergo training to be able to use them effectively.
Our solution: Depending on the video conferencing solution you choose you might not need any training at all! Cloud-based video conferencing packages such as LifeSize Connections work quickly and simply via desktop computers, with no training required. If you decide to purchase a complete system you may prefer to buy it via a leasing option that lets you include the cost of any training and spread your payments over a period of months.
More impersonal than “real”meetings
The objection: Seeing someone on screen is never going to be as good as meeting in person.
Our solution: In the past video conferencing did have a reputation for having a blocky picture or audio out of sync with the image. The latest High Definition video conferencing systems let you see every gesture or facial expression clearly, meaning misunderstandings are less common.
The objection: Video conferencing is always breaking down, the picture freezes or the sound cuts out, so it’s impossible to have a conversation.
Our solution: Technical failures are one of the main disadvantages of video conferencing, that’s true. The biggest issue is that your video conferencing connection is only ever as good as your internet upload and download speeds. Where businesses do not have reliable or fast broadband we can offer a managed video conferencing service which uses our fast servers, so effective video conferencing is always available.
International time zones
The objection: When I need to conference with someone on the other side of the world it’s inconvenient having to make the call in the middle of the night.
Our solution: Smarter Interactive has a Tardis-like box that can let you travel at the speed of light. OK we don’t but we think that when the choice is between holding a conference at a strange time of day or driving to the airport, checking in, buying a ticket, flying for hours, adjusting to the time zone etc etc – you’ll soon see the benefits of video conferencing, even if it does mean getting up earlier for a chat!
To discuss all the video conferencing options that Smarter Interactive can offer you, give us a call on 0118 336 0010 or fill in the form on the left to arrange your free, no obligation demonstration.