The ready availability of business quality video conferencing systems designed to meet the needs of SMEs can be a double-edged sword for smaller businesses hoping to benefit from the technology.
That’s the view of Graeme Victor, CEO of telecommunications solutions company Du Pont Telecom, who says businesses usually invest in video conferencing because they want to support virtual teams across business and geographic boundaries, boost productivity by reducing employee travel time, reduce travelling expenditure and generally deliver better customer service.
“There is a vast selection of video conferencing systems and solutions out there, many of which are not designed to meet the requirements of the business environment,” he says.
“When investing in a video conferencing solution, therefore, SMEs should select a business grade system that’s based on secure, manageable technology and supports their broader business goals now and in the future.”
Victor points out that SMEs don’t have the time or money to spend on complex, costly technology implementations.
They should therefore look for a provider with experience in working with and supporting smaller organisations, and which offers video conferencing solutions designed specifically for that market. That’s especially true for businesses that either don’t have an IT department, or whose IT team is small and already over extended.
“SMEs should also deploy and pay for the technology in a way that makes sense for their business. That could range from opting for managed and/or hosted services; to leasing the solution in a way that lets them pay over time and upgrade as needed,” he adds.
Most importantly, SME should opt for a video conferencing solution that:
* Offers professional quality and business grade reliability and security.
* Is simple and easy to use.
* Can be used easily in different environments, such as at desks, in conference rooms or on the road.
* Is scalable for future growth.
* Allows for efficient use and management of bandwidth.
* Is based on open industry standards to ensure interoperability and investment protection.
* Is fully supported from planning and installation through ongoing management.