In January of 2019, Chicago was struck by a record-breaking polar vortex that froze most business operations for weeks. For the health and safety of workers, organizations from every industry shuttered their doors and sent employees home while they waited for the city to thaw out. Companies who had the ability to work from home allowed their employees to do so, and companies who didn’t simply had to wait.
While nobody wants to imagine a worst-case scenario, interruptions can happen, and businesses need to be prepared. That’s why It’s important to have systems and processes in place to maintain operations, especially when it comes to staying connected.
Video conferencing is great for everyday business communication, but it can also play a critical role in keeping your business afloat during a crisis. Here are four ways video conferencing can help your business circumvent crises and continue business as usual:
1. Employees can communicate and collaborate remotely
When disaster strikes and employees need to work from home, video conferencing will be critical for teams to stay connected. Regular office meetings can shift to a completely online format where employees continue to collaborate as they would under normal circumstances.
Video conferencing is especially effective (compared to audio-only conferencing) for employees to communicate and collaborate remotely. Studies show that 93% of communication comes from nonverbal cues. With video conferencing, employees can assess the tone and body language of the people they’re speaking with and vice versa, replicating the in-person interactions they’re accustomed to in the office and make more productive decisions as a result.
2. Video conferencing is easy to learn and use
Employees who aren’t familiar with working remotely might have difficulty adapting to the new work-from-home environment. When they’re suddenly thrust from collaborating in a physical office to a virtual office, they might spend a significant amount of time learning the ins and outs of being a virtual worker.
Luckily, video conferencing can be the least of their worries. Many video conferencing solutions are browser-based so employees don’t need to download or maintain a separate app to use. Employees can join meetings with one click from wherever they are and set up new users and teams in minutes. In addition, video meetings can be launched and joined from any device (PC, tablet, phone), making them accessible from anywhere convenient for employees.
3. Use video conferencing when travel is restricted
In-person meetings with clients and prospects are an essential part of business, but when travel is restricted, video conferencing is an excellent alternative. Meetings can be conducted online with no loss in productivity or presence, making no negative impact on business.
At the same time, being fully prepared to engage with clients virtually instills confidence in your brand that even during times of crisis, your business will continue operations as normal. To your clients and prospects, that translates into having the business flexibility and ability to adapt to their changing needs at any time.
4. Video conferencing can reach large groups of employees
Employees look for leadership and guidance when business operations are uncertain, so leaders will want to reach as many people remotely as possible. A single video conferencing room can fit hundreds of participants, meaning leaders can address entire departments at the same time.
Additionally, features like cloud recording and streaming can increase the reach of video calls even more by allowing people to access the calls on demand after the meeting.
When leaders can meet with the entire department or company in one go, this not only saves precious time but also ensures that everybody is on the same page and working towards a common goal. This can help boost team morale and engagement during a time where employees might feel more isolated and disconnected than ever before.
Keep your business running during any disaster
In challenging times, video meetings will show your teams, partners, investors, and clients that the business is fully prepared to avert disasters and prevent operations from being disrupted. Employees will have the communications and collaboration tools to continue working remotely until they can return to the office.
Businesses need the right video conferencing solution to make business continuity happen. Employees need to be able to adopt the solution quickly and implement it into their normal day-to-day workflows, on top of having versatile tools to make working together with colleagues a breeze. Once the entire organization has fully embraced video conferencing, teams can continue to be productive and deliver results in any emergency situation.
Want to learn more about integrating seamless video conferencing into your organization? Check out our short introduction to RingCentral Video below.
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Originally published Apr 14, 2020, updated Jan 18, 2023