With the help of communications technology, an online meeting can take place at a moments notice, for next to no expense. Meetings held online are similar to a standard, face-to-face meeting, especially when you use one of the many specially designed conference software options.
In an online environment, people can interact with a group regardless of the participants physical location; or one person can give a presentation or demonstration while the other participants become the audience. There are both visual and audio capabilities that make meetings held online a quality business experience.
Online meetings work by using conference software that offers services to participants to mimic a face-to-face meeting. You can typically use a conference program that allows for the host of the meeting to present information with various tools- similar to what you'd find in a business conference room.
A whiteboard for illustrating points and drawing objects, a voice component that allows individuals to speak to one another either via a computer microphone or through a telephone conference service, and sometimes a text chat feature. In some online meetings, the software that is used can support video.
There are numerous advantages of conducting online meetings over the setting up of more traditional meetings in your office, or renting a large conference room in a hotel. First, the expense of face-to-face meetings can be costly, particularly when people are traveling great distances to meet together regularly, or when the meetings are expected to run for hours and food is brought in to feed all participants.
If you must rent a large hall or conference room, the expenses can be astronomical. The costs of conducting meetings online are minimal, and include the cost of membership to one of the conferencing online services, and maybe a long distance phone call depending on the service you use for audio capabilities.
Another advantage to having online meetings as opposed to face-to-face meetings is the ability to conduct the meeting from whatever location you may be in.
If you are working from home, for example, using the internet and conference software allows you to instantly connect with co-workers or your employees. If you must travel, you can still “sit-in" and participate in the meetings of your co-workers or employees so you aren't missing important information while you're conducting other business, even if you're on the other side of the globe!
Time management is improved with the use of online meetings as opposed to traditional meetings, as well. It takes time to gather everyone into the same room, settle people down and get a meeting undergo. When you use conferencing software, everyone logs in at the same, specified time, and the meeting begins.
There is less time required to plan for an internet meeting, and no tables or chairs have to be set up for the certain number of participants.
Online meetings are also extremely useful for providing demonstrations and hands-on training to customers. If you are a company that develops software or web based programs, you can use the meetings to show your customers how to operate the programs.
Training employees can effectively occur while conferencing online. You could actually conduct online courses to train employees on new policies or procedures, whether your employees are located in the same building or in various locations around the world.
With multiple options for online meetings and internet conferencing available, how do you know which one is right for you? Before you sign up for one of the many companies that provide meeting services, you should access your needs for meeting software and figure out how you are most likely to use it.
Will you be having monthly team building meetings or a weekly conference with your sales team? Do you need to show videos or will a whiteboard be sufficient for illustration purposes? Will you want the ability to show other programs on your computer through the meeting software? A nice feature of most online providers of conferencing software is that you can try their programs before you commit to a monthly fee or to purchase the software.
This allows you to try out each of the features for free, in order to determine whether or not the program will meet your needs. Once you've determined your likely uses for online meetings you can determine which provider offers the solution to best meet your needs.
Tomaz Mencinger is an expert of current conference calling services . More detailed information about audio, video and web conferencing, web collaboration and online meeting services can be found at his website.