Among the projects I am working on recently, one of them is deploying video conference solutions in Intel. Video conference has been gaining a lot of attention recently here. When I was talking to the CIO of a large organization in Hong Kong a few weeks ago, video conference was also a topics that came up in the conversation.
From what I have heard and seen, there seems to be a increase interest in this subject. There are three factors I believe are driving this. One is the impact of the current economy, which drives down travel budget. Video conference is a lower cost alternative to meet people when one cannot be physically there. The second factor is the increased focus in sustainability. By replacing travel will video conference, one can reduce the carbon footprint of the organization. The third factor is probably the advance of video conference technology. The systems have been getting better in terms of performance and cost. Many of them have gotten much more user friendly and Support more usage models. Some of them also work reasonably well on a laptop PC.
In Intel IT, we have a program that is trying to make video conference capabilities pervasive to our employees. We have deployed some high end solutions in a number of large sites during last year. We are going to deploy some middle tier and lower tier solutions during the rest of this year. We see these video solutions will bring benefits in areas of travel reduction, sustainability, employee productivity, enablement of new business models, and enhancing collaboration.
A simple survey for the pilot users of a table top solution confirmed that the video conference capability had increased team collaboration comparing to audio only meetings and increased engagement from remote participants. The survey also revealed that some tips and tricks needed to be advertised to use the solution effectively, although the system might appear intuitive to use.
How are you using video conference solutions in your organization? Do you have any experience and best know methods to share?