9 Best Uses For Video Conferences

First What You Should Know About Video Conferencing

What are the best practices for video conferences? Sales meetings are prime examples. According to Computer Link Magazine, a notable firm produced a 3000% percent improvement in the sales-cycle with a Fortune 500 client by utilizing video conferencing on the internet.

Not only can sales grow when video conferencing but the technology can be used in the training of employees, brainstorming sessions, healthcare consultations, interviewing prospective employees and education. These are just some of the areas that gain substantial benefits from video conferencing. Friends and families also utilize video conferences to stay in touch and to celebrate major and minor events.

There has been much debate in the world of business regarding face-to-face versus video conferencing. Studies have reached different conclusions. For example, conclusions have been reached that worker productivity increases with video conferencing; stays the same and actually decreases. So what do you do, should you consider video conferencing at all?

It’s important to make the correct choice when deciding whether to use video conferencing or a face-to-face meeting. The decision can have a significant influence on the effectiveness of the meeting and profits for a company. Let’s take a look at the types of video conference meetings that can deliver substantial benefits to corporations and small businesses.

Meetings Requiring Quick Decisions

Video conferencing provides the opportunity for quick decisions which just can’t be achieved when participants have to hop on an airplane. Making a swift conclusion based on group input by a teleconference deprives the primary decision maker the opportunity to notice body language and facial expressions. These visual cues can be important factors in determining the confidence the key members have regarding the decision. Communication experts claim that 70% of communication is non-verbal and video conferences allows you to view these non-verbal communications.

Video Conference Sales Meeting

Video conferencing allows decision makers who are out of the office to be involved in the beginning stages of the sales process. They also provide a convenient opportunity for important business members to watch recordings of vital meetings.

Video conference sales meetings communicate with prospective customers that you are a state-of-the-art company and efficiency and technology is an important factor in your business strategy. This could be your “edge” over another firm.

Additionally, video conferences allow sales people to assess the interest of the prospect and determine if spending time to travel to a personal meeting is worthwhile.

Insights from an Actual Video Conference Sales Meeting

An article from Computer Link Magazine features an actual case which demonstrates the significant reduction in the sales-cycle which can be achieved with video conferences on the Internet. The company featured in the article received an inquiry from a Fortune 500 company located in Mexico. Through a few emails the two companies quickly agreed to a time for a video conference. During the meeting the customer’s objectives were examined and a real-time demonstration of the company’s product was provided. This was followed by a discussion regarding the benefits the client would receive from the product. That day, another technical review meeting was scheduled. In less than 29 hours the seller had found a highly qualified prospect that then had a strong understanding of the product and was also quite interested in finalizing the sale.

A standard approach to the sales opportunity would typically include numerous phone calls, mailing brochures, more phone calls and then traveling to Mexico. The firm estimated it would take from 30 to 45 days with a basic sales approach to accomplish what they achieved in less than 29 hours.

Video Conferencing versus Teleconferencing

Sales people have the opportunity to demonstrate how their products function with video conferencing, which simply cannot be done with a teleconference. Some studies have concluded that live video meetings are about 80% more helpful at creating a solid bond with people. Stronger bonds can create more sales.

Although a teleconference differs from a video conference in that it has the benefit of being inexpensive and can be attended without being in a designated room or in front of a computer. By this very nature, teleconferences are still an important business tool and preferred by some in certain scenarios.

Worker Productivity with Video Conferences

Studies have concluded that constant travel leads to stress, sometimes depression and a variety of illnesses. This can affect a business’ productivity and employee morale. When people stay home and utilize virtual collaboration, they may stay healthier and their productivity is typically higher.

Although somewhat controversial, some studies claim that video conferencing actually increases productivity. When employees are together in face-to-face meetings their conversations tend to leave the topic and perhaps wander over to sports, politics or personal stories. Video conferencing can help to keep the meeting on track both in time schedule and agenda. Some companies utilizing video conferences even claim they can bring products quicker to the marketplace by reducing the time spent commuting.

Video Conferencing to Train Employees

For companies with numerous locations, significant travel savings can be had by training with video conferencing. One big benefit is that employees can watch a recorded training session several times to make sure they comprehend the instructions.

Connecting Employees

A video conference can solve the problem of branch office employees feeling they are not personally connected with employees at the main office. When the company celebrates a new sale or an important achievement all the employees throughout the country and even world can celebrate together. Personal bonds will strengthen, which can lead to increased productivity, improved morale, and thereby lower turnover rate.

Hiring Employees by way of a Video Conference

You can interview prospective employees from all over the country when you use video conferencing. You can significantly increase the chance of hiring the best candidate and saved on travel expenses at the same time! Some employment recruiters however, have suggested that this format for employment works best for candidates less than 25 years of age or for preliminary interviews.

Possible Negatives of Long Distance Meetings

There have been some documented studies of the possible negatives of video conference meetings. According to a study by J. Sniezek and M. Crede, titled Group Judgment Processes and Outcomes in Video Conferencing vs. Face-to-Face Groups, the face-to-face meeting participants displayed a higher level of confidence in the decisions they made versus participants in long distance meetings.

Some companies have found that employees often go along with the ideas of the group at their location during long distance collaborations. It’s important for management to review all the top suggestions from video conferences to prevent this type of “peer pressure selection” from occurring. Also, participants don’t have the opportunity to get to know the other meeting members during break times and scheduling an international meeting across numerous time zones can be difficult. That being said, the savings that a firm realize with video conferencing may well outweigh any negatives.

In Conclusion It’s Time to Try Video Conferencing

Sales meetings, hiring employees, meetings requiring quick decisions, and bringing employees together are some of the prominent best uses for video conferencing. It should be noted that in the future the term face-to-face meeting may have to be replaced with the phrase a “handshake meeting.” Young people are growing up with text messaging, seeing their friends’ faces on their computers in real-time. With social websites such as My Space, it’s common for young people to have friends scattered all over the world they have never actually met in person. Numerous articles on the Internet mention having face-to-face meetings by way of computers. In the future, workers might be amazed to learn that their predecessors actually spent time and money flying on a plane to have a face-to-face meeting or a “handshake meeting”. Perhaps future generations will think it’s best to have all types of communications with variations on video conferences.

Planning For the Future of Your IT Infrastructure – Notes From Interop Conference

Managing Data Centers

A typical data center or room full of servers should be built correctly and build to last for at least 7 to 10 years in order to be truly effective. These servers should have the capability of accommodating a minimum of ten GB (gigabits) of data. Still, with the growing demand on bandwidth, planning technology should prepare for a need of 100 GB to run efficiently. Another common concern is the need for cooling and power in the server room. For example, the IT staff at Google spends more on electricity for cooling their rooms every year than the cost of the servers within the data centers. Think about it.

Virtualization is another popular discussion topic. This term refers to hiding the characteristics of computing resources through encapsulation. This includes the process of making an individual physical resources appear to work like multiple logical resources. It can also include making many physical resources like storage devices or severs appear as a single resource. It’s important to understand how virualization can help: although it can reduce the physical amount of servers, it doesn’t mean that admin time to support them is also reduced. The costs of administration can truly hinder the entire process and the overall attempt to find a cost-saving strategy.

Services & Infrastructure

As with Data Center management, Infrastructure and Services’ virtualization has benefits which deserve a look. However, the experts will highlight the reality that it can also generate far more work, especially in large environments.

The solutions from appliances are returning as they create reliable, simple services which require little overhead, making them suited for an environment in which administrative support fetches a premium. A key point on this topic is that Asset Management Network Administrators must be aware while maintaining good records of each piece of equipment – not just the servers and workstations. It’s important to control this information for security and administrative purposes as well as lifecycle management and optimization.

Security

Many companies showed an interest in data security and compliance issues. The recommended advice seems to be ‘Defense in Depth.’ Perimeter defense systems which use Web Gateways and Unified Threat Management are available from a variety of companies and were discussed by several speakers. These systems monitored and blocked Web usage while defending against complex attacks using methods of prevention and detection. Network Access Control, or NAC, was a big hit at the conference. NAC disallows unauthorized access, either through wireless access points or the Ethernet. No security plan is complete without encryption. If a system is ever hacked and the info isn’t encrypted, the industry will show no tolerance for having practiced this unsafe strategy.

Collaboration and VoIP

While most everyone will agree that Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) and Collaboration technology are significant advantages to end users, the vendors and speakers both agree that there’s no real ‘one solution.’ The client’s needs need to match the features of the solution, no matter if it’s an IP PBX system, hosted solution, or a combination of the two. Voice over Wi-Fi (VoWF) was also demonstrated. Even though many office locations are wi-fi connected, there are some complexities and solution to make VoIP work on the these networks as well.

Mobility and Wireless

Many speakers and vendors discussed the access methods to gain corporate data from a mobile phone. Security methods including encryption, SSL, and others ensure that the data which flows between the wireless system and the headquarters is secure while in transit. In fact, nearly all companies are headed toward a more mobile workforce. This is not just the executive staff any longer, as there are more people telecommuters, field personnel and sales representatives who need to access information while away from the headquarters building in order to do their jobs well. The final point on Mobility and Wireless revolved around wireless access point placement architecture, particularly for campus locations. With the need for bandwidth and technological advances, there will be radical changes in the ways these networks are set up.

Phone Conferences Via Web Conferencing

Holding phone conferences via web conferencing is an emerging field in conference call technology. More people are now able to access the Internet at lightning fast speeds. Faster speeds means incredible amounts of data can be transferred and shared instantly. To take advantage of this many companies are holding their phone conferences in via a web conferencing service.

While in most cases a company chooses to use either phone conferences or web conferencing, a combination of the two is truly important step to increasing the usefulness of conferencing. Why is that? Well for starters with the introduction of VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) calling services, it is becoming easier to make phone conference calls to either toll or toll free numbers. A VoIP line isn’t necessary; many companies are still using a regular telephone.

To complete the voice portion of a teleconference, the normal steps apply, calling a number and inputting a pass code. So far this is pretty standard and is a process that most companies are familiar and very comfortable with. Adding in web conferencing at this point is also very easy and doesn’t involve too many more steps. First the computer that will be used during the conference call will need to have the software that is provided by the conference calling service. After downloading the conferencing software, the computer needs to be connected to the Internet if not already.

Most modern computers come Internet ready, and installation can be done without having to have the cable company send over a person to do it. In most cases hooking up to high-speed Internet involves picking up a cable modem, plugging it in and connecting both the computer and cable connections. Follow a few simple onscreen instructions and the computer is now ready for web conferencing. After calling the necessary number on a telephone, now connect using the web conferencing software.

Immediately it is obvious why many companies are switching to phone conferences via web conferencing. The ability to not only have an audio conversation, but to share information over the computer adds another dimension to conferencing services. Many companies are able to share sales data, graphs, pictures and even video during phone conferences via web conferencing.

Collection Development Librarians – The Challenge of Acquiring Conference Proceedings

How many times have you heard the statement, “Cut out the middleman and you’ll save money”? As consumers, we all want a better deal…and as the manufacturer (or publisher in this case), you would want the same thing because you could potentially earn more, have more control, and be directly connected to the consumer. In the case of conference proceedings, a highly specialized publication filled with scientific papers presented at professional meetings, the model gets a little more complicated.

To build a broad and deep collection of proceedings, the consumer (a Collection Development Librarian or Subject Librarian), has literally thousands of publishers (professional society publishers and scientific publishers), to choose from. While it’s great to have choices, the task of searching, reviewing and acquiring proceedings from so many publishers is daunting. Taking a closer look reveals even more hurdles to get over.

  1. The top-tier of professional societies have paid staff and can handle inquiries and orders. However, the majority of societies that produce proceedings have limited staff or are volunteer run by engineers in academia and industry. This makes the acquisition process even more cumbersome since they are often not set up like a “for profit” business, and have other priorities.
  2. Contacting hundreds of publishers in order to build a collection of proceedings may not be practical, particularly when most of these publishers are understaffed or not staffed at all. Unless, of course, you have nothing better to do than spend the day on Google searching for conference chairs and their emails or fax and phone numbers.
  3. Society meetings are held on different dates each year so publication dates are uncertain.
  4. Some society meetings plan to publish proceedings but for a variety of reasons, the publication may be delayed months or even years, or may be canceled all together.
  5. Since proceedings publishers are located all around the globe, many publishers are sleeping when you’re awake, and there may be language and currency issues.

There are perhaps many other hurdles, but it would be safe to say that finding a good distributor could be beneficial. Better yet, finding a “conference proceedings specialty company” that has a track record of supplying a variety of proceedings to libraries, may provide the best bang for the buck.

A good distributor will be able to gather a list of titles from many publishers with pricing and availability information included. They may be able to provide more specialized services like handling certain recurring conference titles on standing order. They also may even be able to sort titles or publishers by subject area. For example:

  • Aerospace Conference Proceedings
  • Electrical & Computer Conference Proceedings
  • Chemical & Petroleum Conference Proceedings
  • Nanotechnology Conference Proceedings
  • Biology & Medicine Conference Proceedings

This can make the librarian’s job much easier. Rather than spending countless hours searching the web for titles in specific subject areas, just so you can begin the arduous task of contacting dozens or hundreds of publishers — imagine having new title information, sorted by publisher or by subject, served up to you on a monthly basis. After examining the list and choosing the titles you want, you can hand the order off and let them do the rest.

For the same reasons that a central market or grocery store is more convenient than driving all over town to gather a variety of foods and other staples, a good conference proceedings distributor can be worth their weight in gold. Given the price of gold these days, that’s pretty valuable.

How to Setup an Internet Conference Call

It seems with the invention of the internet, everything is changing. The way we send information has been changed dramatically. People use to write a letter, stick it in an envelope, place the stamp on it, and mail it away. Now that letter has been turned into an instant telegram, compliments of your computer and the internet. Photos that took an hour or 2 to get developed, can now be transferred to you computer, digitally enhanced, and then printed with high quality, in a matter of minutes. It is no surprise that conference calls that were done over the phone, can now be done online.

An internet conference call is done via your computer. Luckily for you, you do not need a college “how to setup an internet conference call” course. Then again, you can’t jump right in and be a professional at it either. First you are going to need software that allows you to conduct a conference call over the internet. This part is not very hard considering that there are a number of companies that have software that let you host a conference call at little or no cost to you. The software you have setup will have a different overall view, and may be more complicated or less complicated then others.

Here is a basic example of creating a conference call on the Skype software.

  • Bring up the skype user window and find the tools area and click on it.
  • Find “Create Conference”
  • Click on it a new box will open.
  • A new box has just appeared, titled “Start a Skype Conference Call” Type in the topic of the Call, in the box.
  • Select up to 4 people who you wish to participate in the conference call.
  • After having them selected click the add button.
  • Once all names are listed in the “conference Participants” box click the start button. The participants will join in a few seconds.
  • Discuss what ever you need to during the call.
  • If finished press end call button.
  • Confirm that you want to end the call.
  • As you can see, it is quite simple to set a call up over the internet. During the call you can share information, files, video, and audio. Each program is different. Some may restrict the amount of information you send, while others may have no barriers on such things. It is true that these types of programs are similar to chat rooms and such, but they offer many more features and the ability to share sound and video. The best thing to do is try a few, before settling down with a specific type. Although you may be happy with your current internet conference call setup, one may be just around the corner that could be even better.

    Computer Science Conference Can Create A Great Impact On Your Career

    If you are a student in computer science, and are involved in a research activity, publishing your journal on a regular basis is one of the most important things that you have to do. The role of Computer Science conference and the publications from it is immensely significant. It goes without saying that conferences have the advantage of providing fast publication which are also reliable. You can expect to get your papers published on a regular basis due to which several researches will come together.

    In fact, the importance of the role played by conferences in the computer science has been recognized since a long time. This is the reason why there are several organizations that are conducting conferences to help researchers and professionals publish papers.

    The Effect Of Conference Proceedings

    The effect of conference proceedings on communication in this field can never be ignored. Traditionally, they have been used as a quick form of research communication. Consequently, other scientists could derive important and valuable information. This is a form of scholarly communication and is highly suitable for a mature and established field like computer science.

    Most Popular Topics:

    Some of the most common topics in this field are contained in the conference proceedings. As a result, others get some more ideas and information about such topics. In addition to that, rare topics also become the subject of discussion in these conferences. Moreover, for each topic, the numbers of papers are immense and they comprise of summary, abstract and the whole paper of course.

    A Platform For Discussion:

    National and international conferences turn out to be one of the best platforms for discussion. People from various levels attend these conferences and present their papers. As a result, ideas and information are exchanged due to which it also helps in enhancing the knowledge. In fact, lots of nascent ideas in this field are also discussed.

    Getting To Know People:

    As a researcher, it is important to know other people in your field along with their ideas. Thus, conference proves to be the best option in this field because you get the opportunity to know lots of people along with their thoughts and views. This can help you to a great extent. You never know, you might also think of publishing your next paper on a view shared by a peer. It is particularly due to this reason that you will find several people that are participating in the conferences.

    Held Across The World:

    As mentioned, Computer Science conference takes place all over the world and are conducted by different organizations. Thus, you should check out a list of the upcoming conferences in your area so that you are able to present papers on it. Even if, you are unable to present any paper for the upcoming conference, you can always attend it as an audience to listen to others.

    Thus, the significant effect created by conferences is something that you will not find through journals or articles. You will surely miss out something if you do not attend them or present your papers.

    Role of Computers in the Promotion of Environmental Education

    Computers have caused a revolution in education, but the tremendous changes seen in the last decade may be surpassed in the next as those computers are connected in a global education network.

    Teachers and high school students sample the water in Lake Baikal in Siberia while at other lakes around the world, other teachers and students take similar samples from local lakes and subject them to the same simple water-quality tests. Via their school computers, they exchange their results and their observations about how water pollution problems are the same around the world. They are part of a “global laboratory” project that includes scientists specializing in water pollution.

    A similar computer network pins citizen activists, joined with students, teachers and scientists, in “sister watershed” groups throughout the world.

    Amateur birdwatchers and biologists pool their rare bird sightings in a North American computer network that is linked with bird researchers in Central America and South America.

    The differences between classroom and community education are blurred on the global computer networks. Voluntary organizations, government agencies, students and teachers are all involved in a real that has become, for many, a virtual classroom, without walls, and increasingly without borders.

    Already, pilot projects have high school students sharing the methods and results from field studies of environmental quality, using computer telecommunication to leap national boundaries. Elementary school children share their life experiences end visions of the future the same way. Their messages to one another, passed with tremendous speed and shared simultaneously among many classrooms, provide strong, personal lessons in science, geography and human relations.

    Environmental education curriculum development, pursued independently and often in isolation by teachers, school districts and universities over the past two decades, is now linked in a global forum that can respond immediately to the ever more complex and urgent environmental problems the world faces. Teachers the world over are connecting with their counterparts to discuss how they can do their jobs better. Co-ordination of international education projects is less burdened by the constraints of time and travel budgets as computer networks provide forums for collaboration.

    The technology for this exchange takes advantage of the personal computer’s ability to communicate over standard phone lines using a modem. The simplest networks connect personal computers in a “store-and-forward” system that echoes messages from one to the next, until all have copies. These least-cost networks are linked to larger, faster computers that act as central information storage banks and relay stations. They in turn exchange information with one another and tap the power and data in computer systems at major research and educational institutions.

    In many ways this vast new sea of information presents its own challenges, often akin to “drinking water from a fire hose.” The enormous glut of fact and opinion is impossible to take in, and has forced those who would taste its power to devise new ways for organizing and sampling the information flow.

    Electronic mail services and computer “conferencing” let students and teachers communicate with each other privately, or publicly as members of large discussion groups. Computer conferences are organized much like those where people meet face-to-face, except that the meeting rooms are inside each participant’s computer. Computer conferences transcend time zones, since participants review and comment on each others’ written postings as their time and interest allows. Everyone gets to read and think about questions or statements posed in a conference, and everyone has a co-equal opportunity to reply.

    Computer networking is making classroom walls disappear. Real environmental problems are entering the classroom with immediacy via computer nets, and students are jointly seeking understanding and solutions with scientists, citizen activists, journalists, government officials and community leaders of all kinds. While access to computer networks is still remote for most people on the planet, it is becoming more and more available to the gatekeepers and opinion-leaders who help shape common understanding of the global situation. The increasing abundance of the multiple information sources available via computer networks, if viewed as a well-stocked marketplace, may also stimulate demand for more and better goods by the world’s information consumers.

    Citizen participation in the 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED), for example, has been ccoordinated via computer networks on seven continents, giving NGOs access to complete text of the preparatory committee documents, and providing public forums for news and issue discussion. This availability of information has a dramatic effect on how an event such as UNCED permeates the mass media everywhere.

    Underlying the often chaotic view presented by the mass media, structures are developing to channel the new rivers of information to empower this and coming generations to deal with the issues it describes. A variety of efforts at computer networking for environmental education provide some great models. At the root, these efforts are all based on the same notion: that environmental problems must be viewed with a global perspective, but responded to by individuals acting locally, in their own communities or homes.

    All of this new technology is not without cost, and the developed countries are clearly ahead in providing computer access for education. But even in the United States, where computer telecommunication is becoming commonplace, profit rather than educational reform is a dominant force in determining who gets access.

    The harsh reality has motivated citizen computer networks to band together in the international Association for Progressive Communications (APC) to make computer network access broadly available. The APC hosts several promising educational efforts on its partner computer networks that now extend to more than 90 countries around the globe. These services may be tapped by anyone with a personal computer and modem, often via a local call, at costs roughly equivalent to a newspaper subscription or monthly telephone bill.

    The education projects offered on the APC networks are examples of how low-budget computer communication can fit into community programs and classrooms.

    Fabulous News On Internet Conference Calling Exposed

    We live in such a high tech society these days. Many things are being done online now that a few years ago were only a dream. Our children are being taught a whole new world in school with computers. Internet conference calling is one of the latest things out now, for businesses and the corporate world. The older generation is having a hard time keeping up with the new innovative technologies. Our children and grandchildren are learning everything about computers from first grade on. We on the other hand either have to do a lot of studying and learning by hands on, or actually take classes at the local college in order to keep up with the times. This article will reveal some fabulous new exciting things that are available through internet conference calling that will make you want to learn all you can about your computer.

    It can be very frustrating at first, but once you get the hang of a computer, and learn some of the basic things, you can stay in touch with friends and family for hardly nothing. Internet conference calling is opening many new doors and avenues as well, in the business and corporate world. With the latest technology, you can hold a business meeting through the internet, on your computer. How cool is that. You mean, you don’t have to get everyone together and sit down for a meeting? That’s right. You can either in your office, at home, on a plane, or in your hotel room perform internet conference calling.

    You might say, what a luxury. I don’t need that, I’ll stick to the old, everyone meet in the board room, for a sit down conference time. Internet conference calling is the wave of the future and you will definitely be behind times here soon. Internet conference calling can offer you many options that can not only save you time, but possibly save you money as well. With the aid of an internet conference calling service, you can not only hold a conference call, but you can perform slide presentations, scheduling, notifications, job interviews or applications, and they will set it all up and take charge of it as well. Yes, internet conference calling can definitely save you time.

    With the use of internet conference calling, you can actually meet with as many as ten people or more, all at the same time, where ever they are. With added features to your computers, you can also see each other as you are visiting. You can set it up where you can mute certain parties, and disconnect those you want to, when needed and still keep the others online. What an awesome thing. Just think of the possibilities. Internet conference calling is opening up a whole new world for all of us.

    What You Should Be Working With: Computers to Conference Tables

    Every business should have a fully functional workspace. That is not an opinion or a suggestion. That is a fact. There is not a reputable business out on the market today that does not keep a functioning office space. An office space is used by a company’s administrators and its employees as a platform. This platform is then used to manage and operate the business. Without it, a business would more than likely fail. Just imagine running a company from a bar or from a garage, without computers, conference tables, or even a reception desk. Without a space and the necessary equipment, a business is just an idea. Without the necessary infrastructure and equipment, that idea will never turn into a real business venture.

    Before starting a company, you will need to figure out what your own business will need for it to be successful. You will need the idea, first. Then you will need the capital. After both of those elements are ready, you will need to find the workspace where you will be basing your company. It will not matter what field of industry your business is in. Whether you are starting a manufacturing company or a law firm, you will need a fully functional workspace.

    A fully functioning workspace has a couple of elements to it that makes it an effective office. First is the actual space. The physical space of the office has to be ample enough for the people working. Ample enough, meaning they will have enough space to do their work in. Ideally, an office should have enough room to put things like a reception desk and conference tables. However, for businesses on a tight budget, just the space for their workers will do.

    The next element is the equipment and infrastructure your business will need. The main equipment will be the tools and devices primarily used for the core aspects of the business. If you have a t-shirt printing business, this type of equipment would include the silkscreen machine and other devices you will use for the printing. On the other hand, there is also the support equipment a business will require.

    Support equipment is the category of tools that a business needs to support itself. The primary or core equipment companies need to do business may vary, but the support equipment is usually the same. For instance, every company will need a means to communicate with its partners and potential clients. For this purpose, every office must have telephones and fax machines. In today’s information age, this list of support equipment has to include computers, photocopying machines, and the necessary infrastructure to support these devices, like telephone lines and high-speed internet connections.

    Another example would be the reception desk. Many don’t realize it but this desk is an important piece of equipment. This is what visitors first see when they step in to your office. It is considered the face of your company. Conference tables are also a required type of support equipment. Meetings are a necessary part of an office. Being that this is where you would hold meetings and accommodate your guests, it would make sense to get the most comfortable ones out there.

    Free Video Conference – Its Ups and Downs

    Technology has given humans so much convenience — telephones, cellphones, Internet, video conference. Wait! Video conference does not sound any familiar to you? Video conference is that seemingly unrealistic stuff you see on movies with people talking to each other through a TV or a computer. Video conferencing is that technological tool that allows people to have nose-to-nose meetings when they’re actually miles apart. Now, isn’t that cool?

    But you know what’s cooler? A video conference offered without shelling out a single penny! Yes, one can avail of a free video conference. Companies have long been waiting for this means of communication. I mean, who would choose sending out an employee for an out of the country conference when the meeting could take place in the cyberspace, right? What more if this service could be acquired for free?

    Free video conferences are perfect venues to hold assemblies, conduct interviews, address employees, present proposals, give lectures, and several more activities that companies need to carry out. Oftentimes, medical, educational, and legal fields utilize these free video conferences. Distance learning programs offer these free video conferences to better address the problems that students that avail of these programs may have and consequently provide solutions. Business departments also take advantage of these free video conferences to convey overviews of the market. Medical concerns like learning novel prescription drug benefits may also be addressed through this medium.

    To make the most out of a free video conference, here are some indispensable suggestions:

    • 1. Focus yourself into the camera. Look directly into it.
    • 2. Communicate clearly by avoiding mumbling. Say your statements slowly and audibly.
    • 3. Don’t make any unnecessary movements.
    • 4. Before responding, it is wise to pause for a while. This will give the participants ample time to catch up with the topic and absorb the ideas well.
    • 5. Pay enough attention to the conference goings-on to avoid having to make people repeat themselves.

    A free video conference does not mean that you can just do anything that pleases you during the meeting. Maximizing a free video conference relies on the etiquette you personally adhere to.

    A word of precaution in using free video conference is that some dilemmas may arise. Expect poor resolution with freewares and when using webcams. Frame rate can suffer too. During exchanges, delays of a few seconds may also happen.

    If you prefer to steer clear of those mentioned setbacks of a free video conference, you may opt to use the following types of video conferences.

    There are three methods to set up a video conference. 1) The computer-based system that is considered the cheapest type uses a webcam and a free video conference software. This type is considered only good for a person-to-person conferencing because of the limitation with the field of vision. 2) A desktop system is a kind of video conference, which is more innovated than the computer-based system. The hardware installations on the computer make audio and video transmission aspect of the video conference a lot better. It’s preferred when dealing with small groups. 3) The studio-based system is the best form of video conference but it comes with a hefty price tag. This consists of a room fully-furnished with control systems, overhead cameras, vision switchers, document viewers, and slide viewers. Universities and enormous companies use this kind of video conference.