COVID taught us that we no longer have to show up in-person to get things done. Today, one-quarter of all jobs in the U.S. are remote, and video conferencing is the new communication standard. But nearly 98% of workers say they want to work remotely at least some of the time. This almost certainly signals that video conferencing will remain the go-to tool to facilitate team collaboration in the years to come.
What have these huge trends in the state of the American workforce taught us since COVID? What are the benefits of video conferencing in the post-COVID era—and beyond?
How COVID Changed the Work World
Pew Research recently released data on how the pandemic changed our work models in the U.S. They state, “The abrupt closure of many offices and workplaces…ushered in a new era of remote work for millions of employed Americans and may portend a significant shift in the way a large segment of the workforce operates in the future.” In fact, many American workers who never worked from home before COVID quickly realized the benefits. Today, 71% of workers are doing their job from the comfort of their couch at least part of the time each week—and they don’t want to go back. Teleworkers say these flexible work models allow them to:
· Choose when they work. Most say their productivity has increased for this very reason.
· Balance work and home life. Many workers say they can better handle family responsibilities when working from home.
· Save the time and money they would have spent commuting. Another study showed the average employee could save $4,000 annually by working remotely.
For companies, video conferencing allows organizations to save on travel costs as well as office overhead; those savings can be substantial. One study showed companies could save $11,000 per worker on office space if they allow that employee to work remotely at least 50% of the time. Another study showed the average company could save $33,000 on travel costs just by using video conferencing.
However, one negative of telecommuting is that the Pew Research highlighted that 65% of remote workers say they are less connected to their coworkers than when they were in an office.
At the center of this trend is video conferencing, an online technology that allows meetings to continue from wherever the employee is working that day. Pew also researched consumer feelings toward these tools and they say, “there’s no evidence of widespread ‘Zoom fatigue.’” Their data showed:
· 81% of remote employees use video conferencing regularly.
· 59% also use instant messaging platforms to communicate with coworkers.
· 63% say they are fine with the amount of time they spend on video conferences.
Seven in 10 adults today believe their jobs can be done from home. But without video conferencing this number would likely be far fewer. Post-COVID, how can the benefits of video conferencing continue to positively impact the American workforce?
Benefits of Video Conferencing Post-COVID
The benefits of video conferencing became clear during COVID. This technology has been around for decades, but this is the first time in history that we’ve depended so heavily on these tools. Video conferencing allowed us to immediately adapt to a fluid situation during the pandemic. These tools kept us safe while business went on as usual at most companies.
One of the benefits of video conferencing is that these communication tools are affordable and adaptable across industries. From medical practices to educational institutions, video conferencing solutions can be used for any type of business. Not only is the technology easy to use and reliable, but it’s safe enough to follow the most stringent privacy standards, such as HIPAA in healthcare. Some of the typical applications and benefits for video conferencing technology includes:
· Effective, immediate communication with remote sales or operations teams.
· Connecting traveling or remote workers around the globe.
· Improving collaboration with off-site business partners.
Video conferencing ensures the safety of your workforce while improving collaboration. Not only did the use of video conferencing lessen the chance that you would be exposed to COVID, there will be a similar benefit during cold and flu season. Employees can stay home now if they feel a cold coming on, instead of pushing through to go into the office. This will positively impact healthcare costs for American businesses. Cold and flu season alone rings up a $17 billion price tag in lost productivity. Video conferencing helps to stop the spread of viruses and keeps your workforce on the job.
What’s Next for Video Conferencing?
A recent study looked at how organizations are reaping the benefits of video conferencing. They found companies are going beyond using these tools for client meetings or team collaboration. It is now becoming commonplace for businesses and institutions to use video conferencing to expand to all-hands meetings, live streaming events, town halls, and more. You can expect these trends to continue, not decline in the future.
We know that video conferencing is an essential tool for maintaining organizational communication and connection. But these tools also offer companies a way to recoup some of the economic loss that the pandemic may have caused due to lost business during the shutdown. This trend argues strongly that video conferencing will continue to make economic sense for companies in the near future.
Furthermore, for the companies that lack a strong IT team, online video conferencing solutions are fairly plug and play. Software-as-a-service (SaaS) models have become the great equalizer, allowing any size company to use the same tools as their larger competitors. Businesses can use video conferencing tools without needing to leverage in-house experts.
In the future, you can expect video conferencing to remain a pillar of business communication. Video conferencing will continue to provide benefits like lowered travel costs, while enabling employee teams to collaborate, share ideas, and get work done. It’s video conferencing that keeps us agile by enabling faster and more efficient work.
MegaMeeting is proud to offer our clients all of the benefits of video conferencing. Find out why our state-of-the-art tool is the top selection for small, medium, and large businesses all across the country. Talk with our team today to find out how we can help your business.
MegaMeeting solves the biggest challenges of modern video conferencing. For users, it is an all-in-one platform that delivers both video conferencing and webinars in a single, simplified interface. For attendees, it is 100% browser-based, making it highly accessible; joining a meeting is instantaneous from a single click. For enterprises, it is highly customizable, with white-labeling options for a private branded solution. For developers, it is API-driven and easy to integrate.
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