Last Updated 30 Mar 2021

What Is Video Conferencing

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Video conferencing is a newer tool available to individuals and businesses, which allows people to communicate between two separate locations, via software that combines video and voice. This can be done as simply as a web camera and having conversations with friends and family. Businesses use this tool to improve many areas of the company. Travel expenditures, time, rentals, hotels, entertainment, etc, are all costs of traveling somewhere to conduct business.

By using video and voice solutions, companies enable their geographically dispersed workforces to communicate and collaborate more effectively and productively over distances. Employees can collaborate from offices, meeting rooms, and even mobile devices. A variety of organizations are using these standards-based solutions to:

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  •  Gain a fast return on their investment as their teams easily collaborate "face to face" wherever they are
  • Cut the time, cost, and carbon emissions associated with gathering the right people in one place to solve problems
  • Apply saved resources, time, and energy to primary business and organizational challenges

Businesses will sometimes use , simultaneous videoconferencing, which is having conversations among three or more remote points. This is becoming more popular now that DSL and broadband internet is widely available to the public.

How this technology is used where I work

This form of communication is not used widely in the housing industry as of yet; however, our company started using video conferencing when gas prices climbed past three and four dollars. This company has 37 properties, which it manages within a 200-mile radius. When gasoline prices climbed above $3.00/gal, with no end in sight, this company took steps to eliminate costs, and one-step is video conferencing.

Since the implication of video conference, our regional manager shows up once a month (versus weekly) and there is a video conference every Tuesday. The company did not opt to change the methodology after gasoline prices subsided because the savings are very high. Because of this, the company has taken the monies that it has saved and invested them into improving areas of the company.

Since the regional manager has the time available to him that he once spent driving, he has more time to address and review further issue that arise and project that need to want to be completed. This is the only work place that I have worked where such technology has been available. In one previous place (fast food), there was a thief, so the company installed video cameras that could be viewed remotely.

In the maintenance field, it is necessary for the manager(s) to have visual reference of the items discussed. The electronic age has that made the communication end of my job easier. I am able to take a picture with a camera phone or digital camera and send that to a manager for visual representation. For example, my manager can print out a picture of what I sent him, turn his back to the camera in a video conference, and have a conversation about the issue at hand almost as if we are in the same room. Another benefit is I can get a faster response time than before, because I can send the information, and then discuss the situation shortly thereafter rather than whenever the next scheduled conference is.

Message Types

The message type that is in play here is face-to-face communication, in a digital form. All the characteristics that one has in a traditional face-to-face conversation are all present within video conferencing. One can see the body language and facial expressions the other person has and have the ability to compare that with the individual’s tone just like a typical conversation. Just as in a typical conversation, one is able to judge the appearance and level of professionalism of the other person. Because of the video conferencing, even when sending an email the level of professionalism is still there because of communication with these individuals in a digital and internet manner.

I feel that video conferencing has improved my daily, weekly, and monthly life where I work. This innovative manner of communication has sped up response time on issues, saved the company thousands of dollars, and improved the work environment within the company. Employees, managers, regional manager, and owners now are able to know who is on the other end of the line when they are having a conversation; this adds a level of respect towards the other individual. Improving the quality of communication within an organization has been a benchmark for this company.

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