Virtual Meeting Rooms have developed rapidly over the last 5 years and now offer the cost conscious manager or director far more than productivity gains, better teamwork and better, faster decision making.
Now there are real opportunities to cut costs all over the business and this blog will cover those for IT, Finance and the Business Unit leader to illustrate the point.
IT Cost savings
There is no need to have three/four different suppliers for:
- Audio Conferencing
- Web Conferencing
- Collaboration - Skype for Business / Google Hangouts
- Video Conferencing Bridging - Polycom, Lifesize, Cisco
Why consolidate, here are 4 good tips?
a) There are solutions that can comfortably manage all four of the above in one solution.
b) The costs on Audio have tumbled and ultimately at 2.5 pence / minute, savings are there to be had against existing offerings.
c) Web Conferencing has been replaced / eroded by desktop / Laptop or smart device based solutions and if you look at Microsoft and their Video Based Screen Sharing, there is now far higher quality now available in the right Collaboration solution being partnered with the right Cloud based Virtual Meeting solution or Gateway.
d) Video Bridging from legacy video hardware vendors is extremely expensive compared to Cloud based offerings.
So in summary the opportunity is to reduce vendors, cut Audio Costs, Cut Group licensing or Bridging costs and for Microsoft Skype for Business to move to Video based screen sharing is there to be had.
2. Studio Costs for Executive Podcasts (Tip 5 / 6)
As video becomes part of the "Golden Triangle" for the Search Engines and Google in particular the need to produce unique content, frequently becomes ever more pressing in order to get ranked.
So there are two cost saving opportunities here that are more lateral in nature:
- Studio costs for Executive filming can quickly run into thousands and the tens of thousands for classy content. However with a Virtual Room you can either record or stream the Virtual Meeting (the CEO Interview). The quality of recording is now so high that Recording or Streaming in High definition is a mouse click.
Yes you spend a lot on editing the content, but you can literally "farm" content from Virtual Meetings and with some careful tagging dominate the search engines and YouTube channels.
Here's the lateral bit for those IT teams who have marketing departments spending a fortune on Pay Per Click advertising in Google. The organic listing of such rich content and its high conversion nature mean that this farming of and publishing of content ensures you dominate the organic listing in Google and Youtube.
Once your there (high organic listings) the PPC budget can be cut back and redirected elsewhere.
Business Savings from Virtual Meeting Rooms
1. Travel (Tip 7)
We are never going to pretend Virtual Meetings can replace all physical meetings however, by their nature the Face to Face contact and Content Sharing enables a number of meetings and their associated travel costs to be moved from Physical to Virtual. For the Business Leader these budget savings can be substantial however there are more subtle savings too, not just the hard costs.
2. Staff Commuting and Morale (Tip 8)
Today as we sit in another sub zero stretch of winter the stresses and strains of commuting are never more visible. Hours commuting to the office in peak traffic are now with the existence of Virtual Meetings seriously questionable. However here's the no brainers:
- If you asked your team to come in later (no peak) or to be more productive and avoid the commute the impact is huge.
- At the very least you get an immediate increase in morale and an increase in productivity, even if the commute drops from 1 hour to 35 minutes the time gain is a huge part of a day.
3. Team recruitment and retention (Tip 9)
Attracting team members is as always about the role and remuneration but increasingly about the work style, companies who insist on "time wasting travel" to the Office or meeting are increasingly been seen as archaic dinosaurs. With the market for talent "ever competitive" its wise not to be perceived as a dinosaur employer.
For businesses today the challenge is to disrupt and innovate at a faster pace than the marketplace you are in. If you therefore as an employer do not offer modern work practices such as "Virtual Meeting Rooms" so that:
- Ideas can be shared quickly
- Concepts understood faster
- Better business decisions made
- Teams allowed to work more closely
Then you are simply not going to attract talent.
Finance savings from Virtual Meeting Rooms (Tip 10/11)
1. Car Travel.
A Virtual Meeting can cost as little as £19 a month to save 4 people travelling to multiple meetings. The maths are simple if 1 employee does not travel 42 Miles at standard AA recommended reimbursement rates then you save money.
2. Any Travel
No matter what people say today you cannot YET easily work whilst walking about travelling. Many people try to however we can all see time being gained back if we could meet just with 1 click of a mouse.
Similar mathematics apply:
- How many monthly travel claims are for less than £19 a month that it costs to have a Virtual Meeting Room, not for 1 person but 4!
- Take a Train journey for 1 hour to London, often now OVER £100, or more precisely 166p a minute. No matter how many emails you will have sent on that journey you will not have been as productive as collaborating in a Team at 20p a minute. Why would you pay 8 times more to be less productive?
The purpose of this particular blog is simple, to Question why your wasting time and money NOT deploying Virtual Meeting Rooms in your business?
It is not meant to be an exhaustive list, just an illustrative one.