Video conferencing is a communication technology that allows users in different locations to hold face-to-face meetings without having to move to a single location. In business, video conference uses audio and video telecommunication to bring people at different sites together for a meeting or conference.
Multipoint video conferencing allows three or more business employees or company leaders to sit in a virtual conference room and communicate as if they were sitting right next to each other. Services such as TDWS Chat offer the opportunity for the employees to use the technology to share documents, computer-displayed information and even whiteboards and information can be exchanged across the virtual environment, without necessarily having to meet in person.
Business travel is a trip taken by a company employee to undertake duties related to the company’s business. Company leaders and employees travel to meet business partners, attend board meetings and attend client meetings. Many businesses rely on business travel to make sales, keep in contact with vendors, market their products or services, and keep up with industry trends.
Developments in video conferencing technologies have had an impact on how company meetings are conducted. These developments have also had an effect on business travel. This effect includes:
1. Reduced Travel Costs and Expenses
Business travel incurs several costs to the company, including money spent on air tickets, meals and reservations, car hire, and hotel accommodation of the employees traveling. Video conferencing allows face to face communication without having to leave one’s work space. It helps companies to establish more productive working relationships without impacting travel budgets.
2. Reduced Revenues for Airlines
Airline companies benefit from business travel through the purchase of air tickets for the transportation from one location to another. Video conferencing eliminates the need to travel physically from one location to another in order to have a meeting, thus reducing customers for the airlines and in turn reduced revenues for the airline companies.
3. Reduced Revenues for Travel Agencies
A travel agency is a business that attends to the details of transportation, itinerary, and accommodation of travelers. In addition to dealing with ordinary tourists, most travel agencies have a separate department devoted to making travel arrangements for business travelers and some travel agencies specialize in commercial and business travel only. They provide a variety of services to clients, which include purchasing airline tickets, making hotel and resort reservations, creating itineraries for tour or cruise packages and providing information about specific destinations.
Video conferencing makes it possible for company employees to communicate without having to travel and this in turn leads to reduced revenues for travel agencies as there are less and less business travelers.
4. Reduced Revenues For Hotels
Hotels benefit from business travel since they provide accommodation facilities for people who travel to places away from their workplaces and hometowns for business. With decreased travel due to the developments in video conferencing technology, hotels have fewer customers and thus have lower revenues.
5. Saves on Time
Through video conferencing, people in distant locations can participate in meetings on short notice, saving everyone involved time. This saves on the time that would have been spent on the preparation of and actual business travel. Employees can instead utilize the time that would have been spent traveling doing more productive activities. Through video conferencing, meetings can be called and held instantly worldwide with little notice. Team members or partners can join and engage across time zones using any device, from any location.
Saving on time is a huge plus for any company aiming for growth and increased productivity. This advantage offered by video conferencing reduces the need for business travel which would require more time.
6. Reduced Employee Burn Out
Whether long-distance or just overnight travel, excessive traveling can burn out employees and affect their performance. Video conferencing helps reduce employee burn out since employees do not have to travel in order to perform the duties in question, but rather they can communicate directly with their colleagues, trading partners and customers. This results in employees who have a better work-life balance and are more productive, thus business travel is less preferred.
Basically, increased developments in technology of video conferencing might lead to the technology overriding the need for business travel. While it is not possible to recreate the actual human face to face contact, and that sometimes confidential documents have to be viewed and signed in person, with both audio and video, video conferencing offers many advantages over business travel. These benefits range from reduced travel costs and resources, to time-saving and reduced employee burnout.
Through the video conferencing infrastructure, company leaders can stay connected with their colleagues, employees, customers and trading partners. This allows precise instructions, procedures, and overall progress, to be effectively communicated and comprehended by all parties involved. Decisions are thus made faster and projects completed equally faster, boosting the company’s productivity. Businesses will continue to seek to optimize their use of new technologies in an effort to cut down on the costs so as to increase productivity, revenues and profits. In the context of increasing globalization, communicating with video will boost efficiency and strengthen the business case for investing in long-distance business relationships.