The Modern Meeting – the collaboration solution for the 21st century (Skype for Business)

Ross MacKenzie
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In today’s fast-paced workplace the conventional ‘round the table’ meeting format has its limitations. Organisational and logistic issues combined with time constraints can result in a costly, and at times, unproductive enterprise.

A survey by Harris for Clarizen reports 46 percent of respondents saying that they’d rather do “nearly anything else than attend status meetings”, and in particular,

• 6% would prefer to move to Antarctica

• 8% to suffer root canal work

• And 17% to watch paint dry 

Systems such as audio or video conferencing have helped overcome some of the limitations of the traditional meeting, but have historically been expensive and come with their own set of issues – surrounding equipment provision and maintenance, and there can be collaboration restrictions, speed constraints. 

And yet, the meeting – both intra- and inter-organisation – remains a staple communication forum in the business world. And when properly organised and conducted meetings get results and create a positive experience.

The rise of the ‘Modern Meeting’

With Skype for Business, messaging, meetings, and screen sharing are available in one application which integrates easily with existing systems, and works with Office 365.

Meeting scheduling is simple and effortless with access to shared calendars, and participation via any PC or mobile device easy and painless. Skype for Business provides the ability to share and co-author documents, from Excel or Word, for example, and offers whiteboards to brainstorm ideas. The instant response and polling facilities become essential tools in enhancing the immediacy of feedback and comment, helping teams reach better informed decisions more quickly, regardless of where individual participants are located.

Skype for Business with Cloud PBX and PSTN Calling

Incorporated within the Skype for Business feature set are the recently launched Cloud PBX and PSTN Calling offerings which replace traditional on-premise telephone systems.

Skype for Business with optional PSTN dial-in capabilities is available for a small fixed fee per user per month, and saves customers more than 87 percent compared to other modern online meeting solutions.

Saving businesses money on all call types, local and international, Skype for Business Online’s new Cloud PBX and PSTN Calling capabilities also removes from businesses the burden and cost of maintaining on-premise telephone systems.  Fully integrated into Microsoft Office, Skype for Business improves call quality and provides the functions essential in the ‘modern’ workplace – one-touch dialling, call delegation and answering, interactive creation and collaboration along with call forwarding, tracking and recording, enhanced authentication and security features.

The modern meeting for the 21st century workplace

Michael Frisby, Cobweb Managing Director, comments, “The power behind Skype for Business is its cloud-based features.

“Businesses today demand a different collaboration solution to the type of meeting forum available previously, and technology is here to meet those needs. Skype for Business has applications for Windows, Mac OSX, iOS and Android platforms, meaning participants can connect and collaborate from wherever they are.

“To provide greater detail about the ‘Modern Meeting’ and the benefits of incorporating technology such as Skype for Business into your organisation, we have created an eBook, Modern Meetings - How Technology Can Make Your Meetings More Effective.”<

The eBook covers:

  • The elements and features of a Modern Meeting
  • How Modern Meeting technology can help enhance collaboration and cooperation within a business, with customers and third parties
  • How Skype for Business delivers Modern Meetings, and how it compares with other solutions

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