How and why to implement Web-based conferencing
Web conferencing (also known as Web-based conferencing) is becoming increasingly popular in the business world. Not only is the technology impressive to clients and stakeholders, it can also help save on travel expenses and other costs associated with in-person meetings.
If Web conferencing seems like a bit of a luxury, you may be surprised at the many uses you can find for it in your day-to-day operations. You may also be impressed by the flexibility in pricing provided by the many Web conferencing services out there today. While it may seem like just an extra expense, you could find it pays for itself very quickly.
Uses for Web Conferencing
Companies have found many creative uses for Web conferencing, but the three most common uses for any business are:
- Participating in webcasts or webinars. Webinars are far cheaper than on-location business training sessions—in fact, many companies offer them for free. Having your employees take part in webinars or watch webcasts is a great way to expand employee skills and shrink training costs.
- Collaborating online. Web conferencing is great for document sharing. Some Web conferencing software allows for file sharing, so employees can work together on a project even if they are in separate locations.
- Holding Web meetings. Web meetings—from stakeholder meetings to new customer sales pitches—are becoming increasingly popular. Web video conferencing technology has made it possible for meeting participants to not only converse in real time, but to see each other as well. It's almost like being in the same room.
Choosing a Web Conferencing Tool
There are many free Web conferencing tools available, but some companies prefer to invest in more sophisticated, reliable Web conferencing software. With so many products, choosing a Web conferencing company to sign up with can be a challenge. The tips below can help you choose the right company for your business needs:
- Check the services. Look carefully at the services provided by the Web conferencing tool—such as video conferencing, data exchange, etc.—to confirm that the software meets all the needs of your business.
- Check for support. Ensure that the company you sign up with offers around-the-clock support to help you in the event of an issue or failure with the software.
- Check the price. Some Web conferencing tools are purchased at a flat rate, while others run on a pay-per-use model. Know the details of your plan and ask about any potential fees or penalties before you sign up.