Businesses preferring video conferencing over face-to-face meetings

Businesses preferring video conferencing over face-to-face meetings

The popularity of video conferencing is showing no sign of waning, with new figures suggesting that around 60 per cent of companies now prefer the use of such technology over face-to-face communication.

The figures, which were uncovered as part of a YouGov survey carried out on behalf of RingCentral UK, found that because workforces are becoming increasingly dispersed across the world, physical communication has become less of a possibility.

Some 66 per cent of the survey's respondents claimed the biggest disadvantage of traditional face-to-face meetings was the time needed for travel, while 50 per cent cited cost as the main drawback.

As a result, around a third (33 per cent) said that conference calls were a more viable option for business as it allows for a level of global connectivity that would otherwise not be possible.

Lars Nordhild Ronning, general manager, EMEA, at RingCentral UK, said: “Many companies still prefer traditional face-to-face meetings as they are considered more personable and engaging than audio conference calls, but travelling to and from meetings is costly and time-consuming. Businesses are already beginning to see that video conferencing is the answer to bridge this gap."

However, there are still worries surrounding the use of video conferencing, with some businesses claiming that over-reliance on video or audio conferencing can cause a depreciation in focus and concentration.

Indeed, around 46 per cent still think face-to-face meetings make the most sense for their business, with 35 per cent citing poor audio or visual quality.

However, there is unlikely to be any let up in video conferencing's popularity, with the technology proving particularly popular with younger workers.

Nearly two fifths of 18 to 44 year olds said they are likely to spend more time on video conferencing calls over the course of the next 12 months, with many turning to high-definition solutions in order to address the concerns previously highlighted.

“The benefits of HD video conferencing shouldn’t be underestimated. With video conferencing, businesses have the ability to remain personable and engaging with staff and clients,” said Mr Ronning.