Due to the wide outspread of COVID-19, more than 55% of the companies have utilized remote working as the only means to keep the organizations functional. Not only this, but it is predicted that by 2022, working from home is going to increase by 77% worldwide. All these factors have increased reliance on video conferencing software.
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Web conferencing tools are allowing the companies to have face-to-face interaction that was not possible before. They help in bringing remote teams together. The simplicity and affordability have increased the usage of these tools.
Introduction to Web Conferencing Tool
Web conferencing tools allow you to collaborate with your teams efficiently from their respective homes. These software programs will help the companies to hold live meetings, webinars, training, conduct interviews, etc. These activities are held via the internet so seamlessly that even universities and schools are getting into the hang of using them to conduct online classes.
Besides conducting meetings and establishing connections, these tools allow you to share screens and transmit documents. These platforms also have many add-on integrations like recording sessions, transcribe, etc.
9 Features You Should Look For Before Buying Web Conferencing Tool
Web conferencing tool provides a lot of elasticity in executing tasks, especially while working remotely. An incompatible software can make your team feel disconnected due to the lack of on-site interactions. Choosing the right web conferencing tool can help you conduct hassle-free meetings and make your employees feel more connected.
So, here are a few things that you should consider before investing in a web conferencing tool –
#1. Collaboration Flexibility
This is one of the essential features to look at in a video conferencing tool. The tool should allow your employees to collaborate effectively and offer flexibility to participate in the decision-making process. The device should provide you and your employees to have a greater degree of flexibility.
As per a research conducted by The New York times, remote working has increased productivity by 13%. This is possible only when the tool offers excellent collaboration flexibility to the workforce.
#2. Types of Meetings
Before choosing the right web conferencing tool for your business, you should know the type of meeting that you will be hosting.
Do you want to host free discussion meetings where everybody can participate and give their feedback?
Or do you want to conduct meetings where one person is presenting, and all other participants are muted?
Also, you may require to hold multiple meetings at a particular point in time. Based on your needs, you can choose a tool that creates numerous virtual rooms.
#3. Mobile Experience
The web conferencing tool should also work seamlessly on mobile devices. This allows the employees to upload resources, track work progress, and participate in meetings using their smartphones. This is an essential feature for remote teams and on-the-go training.
So, try software that offers a positive experience on the desktop as well as smartphones.
#4. Application Integration
Choose a video conferencing tool that can be easily integrated with the existing applications, allowing the organization to leverage improved efficiency functionality. There are many tools available that seamlessly integrate with third-party applications such as Google Sheet, Docs, Microsoft PowerPoint, etc. Through such integration features, you can easily share introductory presentations.
Some other integrations that you can consider for your tool are emails and calendars. Many applications integrate Outlook and Google Calendars for this purpose.
It would help if you choose the applications you will use with the conferencing tool and customize your software accordingly.
#5. Smart Meetings
There are various web conferencing tools available that have integrated Artificial Intelligence. This helps to conduct smart meetings and increase productivity.
Multiple features of software programs with integrated Artificial Intelligence include –
- Face Recognition to track the member who is speaking and capture them in the frame
- Virtual Assistants to take notes of the meeting or to display relevant files
- Translate speech into other languages in real-time
- Speech Recognition to schedule meetings without manual intervention
Many companies prefer to save the meeting highlights to send out the minutes of the discussion or agenda later over the email to all the team members. This helps them to go back to recordings and review conferences. Additionally, these recordings may be utilized by various companies for legal compliance. You can choose a web conferencing tool that offers features to record meetings.
Pay attention to how much space you are getting to store these recordings. Also, you can choose software that allows cloud storage to save such recordings.
Moreover, when you look for a recording feature, it is vital to balance video quality and file size. This is to make sure that recordings don’t end up eating your storage space.
#7. Screen and File Sharing
Screen sharing is an essential feature, particularly if you are looking forward to conducting interactive live demos. This feature helps the participants to show files or presentations by sharing their screens with other members.
With the need for virtual collaboration between employees, a web conferencing tool should provide an option for file sharing. This helps the participants to access critical documents. This also eliminates the need to maintain long email trails.
#8. Easily Customizable
When looking out for a web conferencing tool, make sure to choose such software that can be easily customized as per your organization’s needs. You can find many devices that allow you to choose between multiple templates or integrations with your existing applications.
The tool should be customizable in terms of look, feel, and functionality.
#9. Customer Support
Every software always has a customer support team waiting to fix issues. Since a web meeting software can face multiple issues related to internet connectivity, device compatibility, and even related to your webcam, it is only smart to choose a tool with good customer support.
COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the future of virtual communications software programs. The web conferencing tool industry is expected to grow better and better and value up to $50 billion by 2026. Various solutions offer different features at different prices. It is vital to strike a balance between cost and features with the right service provider.
Hence, it is time for you to invest in the right online video conference tool that will make your collaborations effective, increase employee productivity, and at some point, help you better with employee retention.
Have you found any web meeting software that ticks all the boxes from our guide? Let us know in the comments below.