In a socially distanced, work-from-home world, video conferencing has proven to be an essential business tool. Analysts report record demand for both cloud- and premises-based video solutions as organizations worldwide use the technology to connect with remote workers, customers, partners and suppliers.
The business use of video will continue its upward trend long after the current crisis has passed, however. A recent report from ABI Research anticipates that video will represent more than 70 percent of all Internet traffic within the next few years.
The business case for video conferencing was already well established. Initially seen primarily as a technology for cutting travel costs, it is now more valued for boosting workforce mobility, productivity and collaboration by enabling users to see, hear and speak to each other, share documents, exchange files, and remotely access each other’s desktops.
Businesses are increasingly leveraging their conferencing solutions for more than video meetings with clients and colleagues, however. Video has become an important tool for marketing, sales, human resources, tech support, customer service and more. Here are five areas in which companies can make innovative use of video conferencing:
Human resources. Video conferencing provides a platform for recruiting, onboarding and training new employees. Video interviews allow organizations to reach a wider pool of potential candidates while also reducing travel costs. Video also enables organizations to conduct orientation and training programs for new hires at multiple branch locations. In addition, video conferencing can be used to perform employee evaluations, conduct wellness programs, recognize staff achievements, share information and more.
Marketing. Marketing teams use video collaboration to brainstorm and develop marketing campaigns. Additionally, video is a valuable marketing tool for lead generation, live streaming product launches and providing product demonstration and training. Digital signage can be coupled with video conferencing platforms to deliver advertising messages at the point of purchase.
Technical support. A video-enabled help desk can enable IT staff to quickly address problems, particularly in situations where users are at remote sites where access is limited. Video allows technicians to see exactly what’s happening on the other end, leading to more accurate diagnosis and faster time to resolution. Videos can also be recorded in case users need to view them again.
Customer service. Integrating video chat into contact center operations can improve the customer experience by creating a “human touch” to these interactions. Video is particularly useful in situations where customers have complex issues. It allows customers to describe their problem clearly and agents to provide step-by-step instructions. Agents can also share video, text or graphical files that address common issues.
Manufacturing. Video solutions help manufacturers reduce downtime and improve quality withs remote inspections to identify, diagnose and troubleshoot any problems. Video can also be used to monitor security and personal safety at manufacturing sites. Additionally, video conferencing can improve supply chain management with better coordination between suppliers, drivers and warehouse managers.
Although business leaders have long recognized the value of video conferencing, many older platforms had cost, complexity and quality issues. Those barriers have largely been eliminated in recent years through the development of cloud-based platforms, more efficient software codecs and multicasting techniques that reduce network demands.
Mitel offers some of the industry’s most reliable and effective solutions, including the MiCollab Audio Video Web Conferencing application. With MiCollab, users don’t need formal video conferencing equipment like room cameras — standard PC webcams work just fine.