Video conferencing has experienced an explosive rise in popularity. Even before the pandemic, digital communication was gradually seeping into our work lives.
Little did we know that in 2022, cloud-based video conferencing would be the most popular form of communication in the workplace.
Table of contents
- What is Cloud Video Conferencing
- Features in a Cloud-Based Video Conferencing Platform
- How to implement cloud-based video conferencing
- Wrap up
Early video conferencing platforms were not cloud-based. They were locally hosted on an organisation’s servers and hardware. Installation could take a long time and software was expensive. As with all technology, innovation gradually caused prices to drop and cloud-based video conferencing solutions began to appear.
They have several advantages over its locally hosted alternative, allowing it to take the edge in the market. Small to medium-sized organisations need something they can set up quickly with minimal hassle. They are also typically cheaper and require less specialist support.
The rise of cloud-based solutions has correlated with a slump in video conferencing equipment and hardware sales. Going forward, remotely-hosted systems seem to have a bright future. Tight competition has resulted in a huge range of solutions crowding the market and customers have more platforms to choose from than ever before.
What is Cloud Video Conferencing
Being cloud-hosted means customers can access instant one-click video meetings directly from their browsers. No software downloads, no complex setup process, no tech issues with internal servers. Cloud-based systems are more lightweight, easier to set up, cheaper and avoid overhead costs related to hosting, IT specialists, administrative support and hardware upkeep.
Cloud-based video conferencing solutions have several advantages and benefits compared to on-premise locally hosted systems:
In an age where technological advances are accelerating at an unprecedented rate, future-proofing needs to be at the forefront of your mind when purchasing software. Developers can fix issues as soon as they appear instead of having to release a downloadable update. On-premise solutions can only dream of this level of flexibility.
Cloud-based systems can keep up to date with the latest advances in online security. They can quickly release updates if a government changes its data handling laws. Locally hosted software can be prone to security violations and threats if not properly maintained.
Your platform can be accessed from any device anywhere in the world. Giving users this flexibility allows you to maintain effective collaboration even across different time zones.
Remote working has been shown time and time again to boost employee productivity. Employees almost unanimously prefer online or hybrid working patterns compared to working at the office five days a week. Cloud-based systems give you the power to implement remote working quickly and hassle-free.
Reduce costs and save time
Cloud video conferencing services allow you to implement remote working and save employees time by reducing commuting and travel between meeting rooms. It saves organisations money because it makes physical workspaces and travel costs unnecessary.
Lack of in-person contact
This disadvantage sadly applies to all forms of remote work collaboration. Only ever seeing our colleagues through screens can lead us to feel detached and sometimes lonely. Virtual activities, icebreakers and games can help foster togetherness in a remote team. We have a full list of virtual games and activities here.
Offices normally have a backup system or contingency plan for when the network goes down. Sadly, we don’t have backups for our personal household connections, our network provider controls them. Network outages on an individual level are inconvenient but difficult to prevent.
Features in a Cloud-Based Video Conferencing Platform
Here are some essential features you should look for in a video conferencing platform:
- Cloud recordings - store your meeting for future use in a secure, cloud-based format.
- Screen sharing - users can share presentations and data in real-time with participants.
- File sharing - share files in popular formats like PDF, Word and Powerpoint with your fellow employees.
- Interactive features - Q&A, hand-raising, shared notes and polling can all be used to boost engagement and enhance collaboration.
- Custom branding - personalisation allows you to put a personal touch on your platform. Clients will perceive you as more professional and it enhances your brand awareness.
- Mobile app - gives meeting participants the flexibility to join meetings on any mobile device - an essential feature in today's work environment.
How to implement cloud-based video conferencing
Step 1 - Choose your platform
This process requires planning and a little research. Luckily, we have prepared a full guide on choosing the perfect platform for your business needs.
If you think a cloud-based solution is right for you, we recommend you try our new platform, Digital Samba for Meetings.
Digital Samba for Meetings has everything you need to host HD quality, feature-packed video meetings from anywhere in the world on any device. Our platform is secure and reliable, conforming to all European GDPR. You can get started today by signing up for a 14-day free trial or demo here.
Your biggest consideration should always be your budget, ensuring you get all the needed features. Digital Samba for Meetings is competitively priced and is packed with an incredible list of features, including the essential ones highlighted above.
Step 2 - Begin setup
This step is usually a breeze, choose a few employees and give your chosen platform a test drive. Most cloud-based platforms are easy to use and require little learning time. You will need to take a bit longer to fully explore larger packages that offer more features.
Step 3 - Company-wide rollout
Now you are ready to roll out the software to all of your employees. Training will be key. You should host workshops demonstrating your new platform to your team. Use your employees who helped explore the platform to deliver training on your behalf if needed.
Step 4 - Get feedback
Feedback is key to a successful software rollout. Ask your employees for their feedback on the new software. Is there anything you need to do to ease the transition? Clear communication at this stage will go a long way to maximising collaboration.
Cloud-based video conferencing has helped us change our working habits in a way that many think gives us a better work-life balance. It saves employers both time and money whilst ensuring a more productive workforce.
Cloud-based systems have enabled even the smallest team to implement remote working. The benefits are numerous and the change is likely here to stay.
In business, you must always try and stay ahead of the competition. Implementing remote working using a cloud-based system will help you stay ahead of the curve and keep your employees productive and happy. You can get started with Digital Samba for Meetings today by starting a 14-day free trial or contacting our team for a demo.
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