Video calls, Facetime, Skype. They've earnt their status as the giants of real-time interaction. They're portable, agile, and user friendly. They eliminate the obstacles of location, time, and culture, enabling us to tune in and out of conversations across the globe. And pretty much anyone can use, or access them.

However, they're often met with problems. 

We've seen Skype used in the business setting before, perhaps for job interviews or briefings with contractors. But when paired with poor internet connections, low quality sound and pictures, and hardware setups that don't support group collaborations (that one colleague at the back of the room who daren't admit they can't see or hear anything!) frustrations are inevitable.

In today's unforgivable digital climate, the business environment calls for something more sophisicated, consistent, reliable and future-proof.

What is AV Technology?

AV (audio-visual) technology apparatus combines visual and audio components to deliver effective, real-time interaction through a combination of software and hardware tools. Usually operating via a cloud platform, a user-friendly interface and integrated screen display, it enables better collaboration between teams, regardless of location.

With a multipurpose AV installation, productivity is maximised through features such as screen mirroring, content sharing. The content from tablets and smartphones can be directly displayed on an AV screen, making collaboration, sharing and presenting efficient and simple. 

And with sophisticated setups that use high quality sound and visuals, AV is being adopted for a variety of purposes such as training, meetings, conferences, media sharing, presentations, collaboration with remote employees. But it's a big investment, and there are many factors to consider before settling on your choice of solution.

Is it future proof?

Before you deploy both audio visual software and hardware, it’s important to consider its longevity. By opting for a vendor with a reliable cloud-based software, upgrades will be automatically available in real time, since cloud which acts as a direct channel for all activity. Will the software be future proof and expandable with new updates and The cloud provides the perfect platform

This means your services are constantly up to date and timely updates, which used to encroach on your IT department's valuable time, are a thing of the past. 

Real time, remote interaction is conducive to modern working expectations. So to maintain the many advantages of audio visual technology, it needs to be 

Saving companies money and time, the AV can be embedded into your arrangement configuration is simple, mobile and versatile.

In the same vein, does your provider offer technical support to promote a seamless, smooth experience for both you and your collaborators?

Design and space

After selecting the zones, areas or rooms you would like to install your AV technology, have you considered whether the layout is conducive to AV’s full capabilities?

A good vendor will spec out the area first, enabling you to optimise its uses and make the long term investment all the more effective.

For example, is the room a large scale conference room, or a chill-out zone? Is it corporate, or casual? What type of meetings will be conducted in this space? These are all features that could impact the delivery of the AV software. 

AV can be integrated into huddle rooms, for more intimate meetings, boardrooms for larger scale conferences and presenations. Alternatively, you may wish to deploy a variety of interfaces for different areas and teams. All angles need to be considered before spending valuable time and money on these resources. It's a good idea to anticipate challenges that might occur. Good organisational display and arrangement is a key factor in maximising its effectiveness.

Will you see an ROI?

Subpar audio visual equipment can negatively impact productivity, efficiency and your company’s perceived professionalism. An effective AV setup on the other hand, will produce a significant return on investment.

Consider what you expect the outcome of the investment to be.

Do you currently deal with lots of parties overseas? Or are you regularly having to pay out for stakeholders, employees, and clients to visit from overseas? A cost that could be eradicated, or at least, significantly reduced with the help of high quality audio visual software.

A good AV investment should be reliable and cost-effective, facilitating productive working scenarios no matter the circumstances. It's a technology designed to reduce downtime incurred through difficult setups, reduce the volume of printing and the difficulties with disseminating media through unreliable internet connections, and streamline the entire collaboration process. Absentees can participate in conversation using the technology with little or no obstruction, through high quality sound and vision, lessening the financial impact and of abenteeism.

One should seek a vendor that can consult with your team before, during and after the AV setup, working to maintain its effectiveness and educating you with new ways to optimise the plaform. It should be tailored to suit your work environment, deployed in the best way possible to maximise your chosen space, while producing tangible and noticable productivity benefits that preempt a significant ROI.

And finally, one should be mindful of the rapid pace at which the workplace is evolving. It's always preferable to invest in long term solutions that are conducive to the movement of the digitally innovative climate.

The future is one where the geographical constraints no longer hinder collaboration, productivity or efficiency. Choosing to work with partners across the globe is becoming simpler with sophisticated technology solutions that allow SMEs to compete in a disruptive environment alongside larger scale businesses.

If you would like to speak to a member of our team about optimising your workspace to get the most out of your teams, contact the Runplace team today.

Also, download our free eBook about how the cloud can help growing businesses reach their potential.The cloud FAQ for growing businesses like yours

Topics: Future Technology, Workplace Technologists

Chris Coupe

Written by Chris Coupe

Chris is a director at RunTech. Having spent six years in business development and management, he plays an invaluable role in seeking out new opportunities and driving the company forward.