The biggest asset of any company, is its workforce. Employees collaborate to push a business forward. And what better place to collaborate, than in an actual meeting room? Now that both remote and in-office workers have joined the conversation, our meetings look different. And so, should our meeting spaces. In just 3 simple steps you can create a smart room ecosystem, turning any meeting room into a hybrid meeting room.
Download your copy of the ebook on the hybrid meeting room ecosystem essentials
We’ve gone hybrid, blending physical with virtual, in-office with remote. To encourage productivity in hybrid offices and focus on keeping workforce engaged, enterprises must redefine their digital capabilities ànd physical workspaces. What is the effect of hybrid on the role of the physical meeting spaces and what are the essentials will be needed to design the perfect, future-proof hybrid meeting room ecosystem?
Will remote meetings change the role of the meeting room?
Of course! In 2020 alone, we’ve managed to double the amount of videocalls. Due to lockdowns, companies changed the working culture overnight and invested in tech for home offices and Working From Home (WFH) policies. But this doesn’t necessarily mean that in the future this number of “fully remote” meetings will still increase.
The meeting room is not dead, it’s making a comeback. Employees are tired of virtual and are craving engagement and social interaction in their job. The office is where they look to find that, especially when it comes to meetings. 1 out of 2 employees takes a trip to the office when they have to host a meeting, and they expect that 81% of all meetings will be hybrid or face-to-face in the future.
So, facilitating a hybrid meeting room where employees come together no matter where they are, at home or in the office, will be crucial for the success and continuity of your business.
Tech at the heart of seamless hybrid collaboration
The right technology is a must to enable efficient hybrid meetings, where remote workers and in-office workers are connected effortlessly. Video conferencing technology is your main and first investment priority. But it can be a challenge to make different technologies work together seamlessly. 57% of employees have trouble connecting to the display and only 26% find it easy to connect to cameras and speakers.
That’s why it is important to transform existing spaces with a well-balanced meeting room ecosystem. A meeting room ecosystem is essentially the whole of technologies, hardware and software, that is needed to create productive and engaging video collaboration. By equipping smart rooms with the right tools that work together in perfect sync, you enable an optimal collaborative experience.
Turn any meeting room into a hybrid meeting room
There are 3 steps to take to create the best meeting room ecosystem possible for hybrid meetings.
1. Reflect before you invest
Make informed decisions for your meeting room ecosystem.
- What solutions do you already have installed?
Audio and video devices, displays, UC&C platform(s), productivity and control tools: do you want to keep using the current devices or do they need an upgrade? All new tech investments should be compatible with existing setups, ideally. Did you know a wireless content sharing and conferencing solution like ClickShare can function as the heart of your entire meeting room ecosystem? Find out more on compatibility of peripherals with ClickShare.
- Which UC&C platform will you be using?
Deciding which UC solutions works best for a company, is an IT responsibility. There’s is the option to go for a single preferred solution companywide. A straightforward choice, but not always the easiest one. Because customers, suppliers, sub-contractors or freelancers might be using another solution instead. On average, people used six different conferencing solutions in the last six months. So, it might be good to roll-out a Bring Your Own Meeting (BYOM) strategy and allow employees to connect with whatever UC&C solution they want.
- What are your meeting rooms used for?
Time spent in a meeting room should be time well spent. How to make that happen? By equipping your meeting rooms for what they’re actually being used for. A meeting’s purpose can vary a great deal, from presenting and informing to co-creating. So, make sure your meeting room setup is compatible with the meetings the users are having. That way, your conference room setup sparks creativity, innovation and smooth collaboration.
2. Choose peripherals to enable a true hybrid video experience
To enable hybrid meetings, you have to make sure in-office and remote participants can understand each other perfectly. You will need a good camera, mics, speakers and a display. Which devices and Software Agnostic Peripherals or SWAPs fit your meeting room usually depends on the size.
The bigger the space (like a boardroom) the more extensive your AV peripherals need to be in order for everyone to be heard and seen. In smaller spaces like huddles the setup can be more compact like for example an all-in-one device. There are many players in the market selling these AV solutions, so possibly not all meeting room tech is from the same manufacturer.
3. Connect tech & people in video calls, but make sure it’s wirelessly!
78% of employees just want to walk into the meeting room, connect to the tech available and start working right away. Moreover, they want to use their laptop to do so. 70% of employees prefers Bring Your Own Meeting (BYOM) to host calls from their laptop.
To get the most out of your meeting room ecosystem, you should consider how users will be connecting to it. 65% of employees struggle to figure out different setups and how to connect to them when moving between different rooms. There are just too many cables, too many control panels, too many user experiences. Make it as easy as possible and preferably wireless.
A wireless conferencing solution like ClickShare Conference ties all technologies in any room together, like a hub, in one easy, seamless and wireless way. Moreover, ClickShare is agnostic (indeed, no vendor lock-in): it works with any device (laptop, tablet, smartphone), any UC&C platform (Microsoft Teams, Zoom, Webex by Cisco…) and has the widest compatibility with different AV peripherals in the market.
But maybe you already have existing fixed conference room setups, like Microsoft Teams, Zoom or Webex by Cisco conference rooms? ClickShare Present is then exactly what you need to bring the user experience and collaboration in these rooms to the next level by introducing seamless wireless content sharing with full BYOD, interactivity features and workflow integration.
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