Posts Tagged ‘online meetings’

How to Prepare for an Effective Web Conference

March 10th, 2015

A web conference can make for the ideal business meeting, professional planning session, or just a talk between friends. No matter when or why it is used, web conferencing solutions are only effective if all parties involved come together at the right time and with the right tools in place. In short, you need to take a few steps before important conferences like this to ensure everything is in place for them to be successful. Luckily, this does not have to be hard to do with the right tools in place.

#1. Learn about the software first

A variety of different web conferencing services are available to allow most people to connect. However, you’ll want to ensure your computer software is up to date and ready to go. To do that, you need to learn what requirements are in place. What software components, if any, will you need to download to use? What requirements should your phone, computer, laptop, or other system need to have for the conference to run smoothly? It is a good idea to check for updates on these software programs if you’ve used the system before as well. This just makes good planning possible.

#2. Don’t assume others know how to use the web conferencing tools

Perhaps you are meeting with an important client for a first meeting. You have no real idea if that person has used web conferencing solutions in the past. You don’t know what they’ve used either. For that reason, it is a good idea to ask a few questions to ensure all participants understand what they will need to do to get online and to get the conference in place and ready to go. The last thing you need is for the other person not to realize they need to call in or log on.

#3. Ensure others have all connectivity requirements

In most cases, you’ll receive confirmation information about your scheduled web conference. Don’t log in at the last minute or forget to verify that everyone received the necessary information. In short, the day before the scheduled web conference, be sure that everyone has the information they need to get on the conference. You may even want to have a test run in your office to ensure it is working properly and that you know about all of the features and tools available.

#4: Get materials ready to go

It is always a good idea to set up your conferencing materials well in advance. Whether you plan to put on a demonstration through live video or you will show a pre-recorded presentation, be sure you’ve run through the process effectively before you log in for your meeting. You’ll want to ensure a test run is done to ensure your information or presentation looks fantastic, too.

It is that easy to make web conferencing solutions effective. Take the time necessary to put in place a program that is going to impress everyone during the event. It will pay off.

 

 

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The Value of a Large Meeting

March 5th, 2015

largemeetingIn today’s global economy, it has become increasingly common for organizations to be distributed across a variety of geographical locations, including different continents. Many such organizations often make use of the Internet to communicate among employees. Even so, communications from executive staff to the entire enterprise is seldom conducted. With modern Real-Time Collaboration tools, it is possible to conduct large meetings with ease. The “executive” staff can communicate regularly with groups as large as 1,000 individuals in a manner that allows for increased interactivity.

How to Conduct Large Meetings Using Real Time Collaboration Tools
For instance, every team member is able to see the presenter’s webcam, the presenter’s screen, and hear the entire discussion. In addition, team members can take advantage of the opportunity to pose a question or even dialogue with the presenters using the built-in chat function.

Even though the audience is large, such tools offer an important communication capability that can greatly assist in keeping the entire team focused on the end goal and in keeping morale high. One of the most common complaints among employees, especially in large organizations is that they feel they are not communicated with frequently and are the last to know when something significant occurs within the organization. In the past, it could admittedly be difficult to keep a large organization that is spread out across multiple geographical points updated and informed. Today, this is no longer a problem with the provision of Real-Time Collaboration Tools.

Boosting Employee Satisfaction and Morale
Such tools also make it possible to solicit feedback from team members through functions such as the chat and question features. By making use of these features, organizations can ensure that team members know their opinion and feedback is valued. This alone can prove to be significantly important in boosting employee satisfaction and retaining top talent.

As executive staff and managers are well aware, employee satisfaction is vital to the success of any organization. A high rate of employee dissatisfaction is directly related to a higher employee turnover rate. Thus, keeping employees happy should be an important priority. Effective communication, including informing staff of industry changes and informing employees about the organization’s strategic intent is regarded as an crucial element in any organizational environment

In fact, in a study recently published in Entrepreneur, when study participants were asked about the one thing they would like to change about management, the top answer was communication. Entrepreneur went on to report that it should hardly come as a surprise that communication ranks at the top of the list, considering that research conducted by Clear Company HRM found that 86 percent of employees cite ineffective communication and lack of collaboration as causing workplace failures. The simple fact is that when communication fails, it results in additional work.

Now, with the capability provided by Real-Time Collaboration Tools, it is possible for organizations in every sector to ensure that employees are kept updated while providing a reliable platform for soliciting feedback.

If you would like to learn more about Real-Time Collaboration Tools and how they can benefit your organization, call us today at 866-758-0984 or email us at sales@rhubcom.com for a quick demo.

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Why Can’t I Join A Web Meeting? Overcoming the Frustrations of Managing Online Meetings

December 3rd, 2014

Women own 10.6 million businesses in the United States and they employ 19.1 million workers. With these staggering numbers, it’s safe to assume that they often face the ongoing challenge of running their businesses more efficiently, especially when it comes to managing meetings.

Web conferencing has been around for years. And, with its longevity, you would think that using the technology would be even simpler now.  But, believe it or not, just the basic steps of clicking a web link and dialing a phone number to connect with a group of people online still leaves many frustrated users unable to join in. Whether they have to overcome the challenges of  waiting forever for downloads, entering incorrect meeting IDs or just the irritation of sluggish transitions as presentation slides slowly coming across the screen –  it’s true that users are still experiencing some major concerns with web conferencing technology.

While it’s hard to find leading statistics on web meeting attendance failures, in general, most failures are connected to issues with downloading and with challenges connected to first time users of the technology. These two issues alone can significantly drive up the meeting failure rate.  When someone is a new or an occasional participant in web conferencing, their chances of having problems with joining an online meeting are greater than someone who routinely utilizes the technology.

Since most web based meetings require that users either have specific software or apps already loaded on their device or that they download it for the meeting, new users trying to download the “client” software/apps for the first time may experience challenges with downloading the software. In contrast, people who regularly attend specific meetings probably already have it on their meeting device and can more quickly connect to the meeting. When the meeting system requires client software/apps, the likelihood of someone not being able to join increases with the factors mentioned above.

Moreover, client software for desktop and laptop computers has to be downloaded from the meeting software website. As such, there are a several reasons why such a download can fail or be difficult for users to complete. Such as:

  • The computer may be blocked from downloading any software by the user’s IT department
  • The user’s firewall is set to block ports needed by the download software
  • The Antivirus software loaded on the computer blocks the download
  • The Operating System version is not supported by the software
  • The Browser used to access the meeting site blocks the meeting address

Obviously, there are a number of reasons that can hinder the download process. When someone is joining a meeting for the first time, not being able to download the required software is extremely frustrating and usually causes that attendee to give up, thus causing an meeting attendance failure.

Meeting software running on the device is required if the attendee needs to:

  • Show their screen and/or web cam
  • Use VoIP for audio communications
  • Need to use their keyboard in the meeting to operate another computer

If an attendee is just joining to see the presenter’s screen and can use a regular phone for the audio, it is not necessary to download software. Modern systems (such as TurboMeeting by RHUB) uses a Guaranteed Meeting Attendance, browser based technology to enable the attendee to join the meeting and see the presenter’s screen without requiring a download of software, thereby, allowing for a significant increase in people joining the meeting.

Initiatives, such as WebRTC, promise to make browser based attendance more common and more powerful with the caveat that everyone joining has a compatible browser. The browser compatibility issue of WebRTC makes it a problematic issue when inviting attendees that are not aware of the browser requirement. At this time, while WebRTC is gaining a lot of press, it does not really remove the issue above; ie a new attendee who is joining with and unknown device/environment and cannot get in.

Another constraint of the software download issue is the size of the download and thus the amount of time it takes, especially if the prospective attendee is not on a very high speed internet connection. Bloated software modules take time to download and execute. If the attendee waits until meeting time to try to join and incurs a substantial time delay in the process, again, they will be frustrated and possibly just give up. One way to deal with this issue is to use meeting software that pays attention to the download module size. If all the required features are available but the download module is smaller, it will also load and execute faster, making the experience more acceptable for the attendee.

In addition to these technical issues there can be mechanical issues that frustrate attendees such as entering or giving the wrong web meeting and/or audio conference ID information. A possible solution to this is to use the browser based approach mentioned above and just email a link to the attendee. The attendee just clicks the link to join, enters their name and uses the internal VoIP system for the audio. This approach is very powerful for webinar type meetings. It does, however, compromise security as anyone with the link can join the meeting. When you have a need for a secure meeting, the download approach from an on-premise system provides the best solution.

Another user issue can be the etiquette for managing the audio part of the meeting. Often you can find multiple people wishing to talk at the same time. Newer systems, with integrated audio conferencing, enables the host to control the audio to minimize such issues. The host can mute each individual attendee at any time, especially when someone is using a speaker phone and then either puts it on hold with hold music or takes another call on a cell phone and talks over the meeting host.

Most modern systems have evolved to the point that performance is no longer an issue for attendees, even for some relatively large meetings. However, if the attendee is on a slow internet connect or the meeting software is not optimized to handle various connect speeds, some attendees can experience slow updates. In such a case, the attendee will feel “lost” if the audio is out of sync with the screen information.

The only solution for this problem is to use a system that is proven to work with the typical attendee mix you need to support. This issue can be very serious if some attendees are located internationally where the internet infrastructure is weak. Look for a system that has address international performance and test it before scheduling such a meeting.

In general, while web meetings have historically incurred frustrating issues for attendees, the newer, more modern systems have mechanisms to overcome most of these issues. It’s important for organizations to evaluate and test web conferencing tools before purchasing the technology to ensure that they can have a better, more effective web conferencing experience.

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Take Advantage of Guaranteed Attendance During Online Meetings with RHUB Web Conferencing Servers

August 31st, 2014

If you have used web conferencing in the past, there is a good chance that you have experienced trouble with attendees not being able to join your conference due to a variety of reasons. When this occurs, it can create problems with the entire conference. Along with causing massive levels of frustration for everyone, these types of issues can also take away valuable time from your attendees when they are forced to download client software that may not even work for them. Among the most common reasons that meeting attendees fail to join a conference include:

  • Computer locked down by corporate IT policies to prevent the installation of software
  • Computers blocked by proxy servers or firewalls
  • Meeting client software installation blocked by anti-spy and anti-virus software
  • Attendees attempting to join from platforms that are unsupported, such as UNIX, Linux, Mac, mobile devices, etc.
  • Computers missing proper Flash or Java Virtual Machine installation

Despite these challenges, it is possible to command 100 percent attendance. With RHUB Web Conferencing Servers, you can take advantage of Guaranteed Attendance across all platforms. This is because RHUB provides the first universal attendance web conferencing solution. This is accomplished by bypassing the roadblocks that typically prevent attendees from joining a conference.

First, meeting attendees are not required to download any type of software, Flash, Java Applet, or other type of software in order to attend the conference. This ensures that even if their corporate IT policy prevents downloading software, they can still join your conference.

Additionally, attendees are able to join your meetings and view your presentations provided they are able to view a Web 2.0 sight like Google Maps with a browser for the following platforms: Mac, Windows, Unix, Linux, iPad, iPhone, or Windows Mobile (with Opera). There are now worries that an unsupported platform will prevent your attendees from joining your meeting.

In fact, joining a meeting is as simple as clicking on or typing a URL. Within just a few seconds, your attendees will be able to join your meeting. The only thing that might prevent your attendees from joining would be if they have extremely slow Internet speeds.

Curious about how Guaranteed Attendance works? When an attendee joins your meeting, he or she will see the guaranteed attendance URL on the join-meeting page. From the URL, your attendee will be able to join your session from any platform and using any browser without the need to begin any download of any type.

Consequently, your participants are guaranteed to be able to attend using RHUB Web Conferencing Servers. In the event that your attendees do not join your RHUB Web Conferencing meetings, you can contact us for a refund of your current monthly subscription. It’s that simple.

Would you like to find out more and even give our RHUB Web Conferencing Servers a try? Contact us at 866-758-0984 or email us at sales@rhubcom.com to learn more about how you can get started.

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What a Single Investment with RHUB Can Do for Your Business

August 21st, 2014

Web conferencing and real-time collaboration tools have come a long way in just the last few years and now offers individuals and businesses the opportunity to save money and operate more efficiently via a remote settings. Today, you have a number of options available when it comes to remote servers and web conferencing. The most common problems that many users encounter with the vast majority of web conferencing solutions today are their limitations and high costs. Most of the web conferencing solutions currently available require users to pay a monthly fee per named user and frequently do not provide a wide breadth of service for that ongoing fee.

RHUB has completely revolutionized the remote web server industry by offering a 6-in-1 solution for a single, one-time cost. With the RHUB 6-in-1 appliance, every department within your organization is able to benefit.

Sales/Marketing Department

With the webinar function, the sales and marketing department is able to take advantage of the opportunity to host remote sales presentations. This is not only a great way for your sales staff to function more efficiently, but also helps your organization to dramatically slash travel costs.

HR Department

Training can easily take up a significant amount of time and other resources. With the RHUB remote server appliance, the HR department can quickly and efficiently provide training to new employees coming on board. As a result, new employees can receive the training they need without the need to wait until the next training session is available. Staff in the HR department are able to ensure that employees are trained more efficiently and effectively.

IT Department

The unattended support option available through RHUB gives the IT department the opportunity to provide remote support to any desktop within your organization regardless of location. This function makes it possible to provide more immediate support, reduce downtime, and slash travel costs.

Engineering Department

Collaboration is the key to any effective engineering department. With RHUB, your engineering department is able to take advantage of interactive collaboration in a remote setting even when they are not able to be in the same location. In addition, meetings can be secure, controlling access, so that sensitive intellectual property can be discussed.

Finance Department

One of the most common reasons that many executives find it difficult to agree on a meeting time is due to schedule conflicts, particularly when the meeting requires traveling. Conduct an executive meeting via a remote online conference without the need to juggle disparate schedules. Again, if confidential financial information is being shared, the meeting can be secured.

Customer Support

Improve your organization’s customer support and customer satisfaction by providing remote support. Customers are assured of receiving more accurate assistance, thus reducing their downtime and improving their overall experience with your company.

Unless you need to remotely access a large number of PCs for unattended support, the TurboMeeting 6-in-1 web conferencing server is easily the best and most affordable choice. By providing the most functions and flexibility for your organization’s various collaboration requirements, RHUB can meet your needs today as well as tomorrow. For a one-time fee, your organization can be assured of a completely scalable solution.

Interested in learning more about the RHUB 6-in-1 solution? Visit http://www.rhubcom.com or call 1-866-758-0984.

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