After a lot of research, you are finally ready and convinced that a video conferencing solution is an asset for your business! But how do you choose the most suitable solution for your business? What are the mistakes to avoid when investing in such a solution? Discover our tips!
- Selecting a videoconferencing solution: the 3 key points
- Choosing a video conferencing solution: pitfalls to avoid
- 1# Take a proprietary solution without a gateway
- 2# Thinking that the positioning of the video camera does not matter
- 3# Thinking that the ergonomics of the room is not important
- 4# Thinking that bandwidth is not as important as the choice of your video conferencing solution
- 5# Thinking that testing the video conferencing solution is not necessary
Selecting a videoconferencing solution: the 3 key points
Number of attendees
The choice of a videoconferencing solution depends primarily on how it will be used, how many people are likely to use it and the circumstances of its use. The equipment is not the same for a webinar with several hundred participants, a meeting between ten employees or one-on-one meetings.
It is also important to take into consideration the location of the different stakeholders, and the individual or collective video conferencing equipment that this implies.
Ease of use
A videoconferencing solution is only effective if it is properly adopted and used by your employees. Hence the importance of its compatibility with your existing systems (especially with the different operating systems used by your employees) and its ease of use.
The easier and more intuitive it is to organise and access a meeting, the more likely your employees are to use it.
Security is a major issue for businesses today, and videoconferencing solutions are not immune to outside attacks. Your videoconferencing system must ensure good connectivity while maintaining a high level of security.
Here are 4 security features to look for when choosing a video conferencing solution:
- End-to-end encryption: This feature ensures that communications between all participants in a meeting are encrypted. Zoom, which was challenged on this point a few years ago, has since installed this feature.
- Custom Meeting URL: This feature allows the host to customise the meeting URLs sent to participants who are to join the meeting. Custom meeting URLs also prevent uninvited participants from joining the meeting.
- Lock Meeting: This feature allows the host to lock the meeting once the required participants have joined the video conference.
- Waiting Room: A waiting room allows the host to have control over who joins the meeting, by having participants wait in a virtual room until the host lets them in. It also delays any incident if an unwanted participant tries to join the meeting.
It is also important to secure any computers in meeting rooms that are accessible to users and could be compromised by visitors.
Choosing a video conferencing solution: pitfalls to avoid
1# Take a proprietary solution without a gateway
To address this concept, it is important to define it for you. There are two types of video conferencing solutions:
- The standard solution: H323/SIP is the professional standard (a combination of several specialised protocols: video (MPEG4), audio (G7xxx, Opus) and data (H239)). With this protocol, your video conferencing system can “talk” to any other standard equipment.
- Proprietary solutions: these solutions do not use this standard and require gateways to exchange with the H323/SIP protocol, which is why these solutions are more closed and less easy to communicate with third parties that use another standard.
To illustrate, Skype and Zoom are for example proprietary video conferencing solutions: Skype will only talk to Skype, and Zoom will only talk to Zoom.
However, your video conferencing system is not only used internally. Your suppliers, customers and others do not necessarily use the same videoconferencing solution as you do.
In addition, standard video conferencing solutions allow you to invite your external partners from a simple browser.
2# Thinking that the positioning of the video camera does not matter
The layout of the room and the videoconferencing equipment are essential. The positioning of the camera is key to a good video conferencing system for several reasons:
- Eye-contact: the camera must be placed in such a way as to film all the participants and be at eye level. As in a real interview, people can look each other in the eye.
- Visual fatigue: natural light should be perpendicular to the screen to avoid backlighting, which is a factor in visual fatigue.
- Bandwidth consumption: as natural light is not stable, it consumes more bandwidth in videoconferencing because the principle of videoconferencing is to encode all the pixels that move.
3# Thinking that the ergonomics of the room is not important
The layout of the room is an essential point. For optimal use of your videoconferencing solution, there are several points to consider:
- Furniture: it must be suitable and allow all participants to see the screen and be seen by the remote site
- Acoustics: avoid choosing a room with glass walls. This contributes to the reverberation of sound, which will degrade it in videoconferencing. It is advisable, if you find yourself in this situation, to provide one or two walls covered with an acoustic absorbing material
- Lighting: in general, it is advisable that each participant in the room be properly lit (about 200 lux)
4# Thinking that bandwidth is not as important as the choice of your video conferencing solution
For a good videoconferencing experience, i.e. high definition (720p) and good sound quality (no audio clipping), you need about 1Mb/remote site.
Without this minimum throughput, you risk frustrating your employees in the use of the videoconferencing system and making their remote meetings impossible.
5# Thinking that testing the video conferencing solution is not necessary
This will encourage its use internally and give you a faster return on investment.
Don’t hesitate to contact one of our specialists who will be able to advise you on all these points before you buy a new videoconferencing solution.