10 Little-Known Conferencing Features That Offer Big Productivity Gains

Ah…the requirements for success in our increasingly competitive business environment…continually seek productivity gains, cost savings, and employee satisfaction by enabling the ability to work wherever you need to be.  Web conferencing offers accessibility, reliability, and scalability.   With an integrated audio, web, video conferencing solution, day-to-day meetings can be conducted virtually.  These meetings may be as productive (sometimes even more so) than meetings in the brick and mortar world, as participants can join in the conference from an increasingly mobile environment using a diversity of devices, touching ground around the globe, then going about their business when it’s finished.

Web conferences can be scheduled easily when participants can join from almost anywhere, anytime, using their smart phone, tablet, or laptop.  Participants can appreciate the simple, easy to use features such as viewing and editing documents in the whiteboard area, sharing an application, video conferencing with a web cam, and a participant list with an active talk indicator so you can associate a name with a voice.   Let’s take a look at some of the other very useful and often unsung features of web conferencing:

1. Personal meeting rooms.   Your personal meeting room link means that you have a conference room available whenever you need it.   Send an instant message to a colleague: “Got a minute?  Let’s meet.   Here’s my link.”  Enter your conference room, and you can review documents and share applications in real-time.

2. Record a conference and send the file to participants and colleagues.   You can record your conferences and file them in your documents folder.  Many conference recordings can be converted to different formats such as mp4 or /wav.

3. Allow remote control in the meeting.  When a colleague needs to show an application or demonstrate a tool, offering remote control can allow a participant to provide instruction or conduct a demonstration.

4. Expand whiteboard to see more on the screen.  A colleague may be sharing a particular area of an application.  You can be sure that you’re seeing all that’s being shared by expanding your whiteboard view.

5. Conduct a web tour.  As you click on different sites, your colleagues travel with you.   A web tour feature allows participants to follow you as you click on links in an application.

6. Track conferences and meeting history.  Need to check the list of participants that attended a recent meeting?  You can look up recent conferences and find information about them such as the date, time and the attendees listed.

7. “Call Me.”   The conference can call you to join the meeting with audio.   Joining a web conference is easier when the phone rings, prompting you to join by phone or voice over your computer.

8. Hide the participant list.  Hosting a marketing webinar where you hope to attract new customers?  As a courtesy, you can hide the names of the participants.   This feature can be very helpful when participants from different organizations join the conference.

9. Send a note.  You can send a public note or announcement to everyone in a meeting or send a private note to a participant.   Communication can be public or private.

10. Conduct a poll.  Ask participants yes or no questions, multiple choice questions, and save the information.   This information can be helpful for future meetings.

What conferencing features have you found most helpful? Do you have any examples you’d like to share about how conferencing has worked for you and your company?
Lisanne Powers Unified Communications Lead Marketing Communications Manager AT&T About Lisanne