What are the returns you can expect from investing in expensive video collaboration infrastructure? Learn how IT departments and business analysts answer the big ROI question. Here are some of the biggest places we have seen ROI working at Vyopta where video conferencing is deeply embedded in daily operations across departments.
Increase team productivity
Video connects people in powerful ways. It makes an otherwise non-existing form of collaboration accessible to teams thousands of miles away.
Speaking from personal experience: my boss often works remotely from California. Our first interactions, from the interview to our first one-on-one meeting, were in virtual meeting rooms. To this day we still connect via video on a weekly basis, and communicate in a way that mimics an in-person conversation. This helps us reduce errors due to misunderstandings or miscommunications, and helps us move more efficiently as a team.
Lauren & Ivan in a one-on-one meeting
So, where does the ROI come into play? As you can probably imagine, I’m not the only one in our organization who uses video. Teams across departments collaborate via video on a weekly or even daily basis to hit deadlines on time, make our product better, and delight our customers. Without easily accessible, rich video communication I’m confident that we would not have reached and exceeded our goals. Some of our team is distrubuted which allows us to work together and get to know each other better than email and phone calls would be able to accomplish.
Observing and reporting is one way to look at ROI, but data and insights are where you can really drill down to the nickel. How do you prove return on video investment with hard data? Here are a couple of specific metrics that we track and compare to video usage within individual departments.
Streamline The Hiring Process
From an operations / administration perspective, recruiting new talent is something that we want to streamline and make sure to be on our “A” game. Plain and simple – video is a great medium of communication to use when you’re trying to find the right person to fill a position. The internet provides you with a cost-effective means to reach new people, and video scheduling allows you to skip the logistical barriers that come with the interview process traditionally.
How do you track it? Since we have analytics, we have visibility into individual video meetings as well as total video meetings for the week. We compare, down to the minute, how effective the hiring process is with minutes spent in video meetings used and positions filled within a given date range.
We can track progress with historical video data, and calculate the amount of money/time we would have spent scheduling meetings with applicants (delaying the hiring process) vs. number of candidates interviewed in a given week with video.
Minimize Product Time To Market
There will always be barriers in communication that slow the launch of a new product including: disengaged participants on audio calls, misinterpreted emails, and scheduling conflicts that push back face-to-face meetings. This problem is amplified when you’re dealing with interdepartmental communications. For product management and development, improving time-to-market is huge because it can mean the difference between success and failure of a new product. In addition, sales and marketing rely heavily on this deadline to close new opportunities efficiently and time campaigns.
Video collaboration helps the entire company get new products out into the market faster and with less errors than traditional audio, email and face-to-face communications. When everyone in the product development process can reach everyone else in a high bandwidth, face to face meeting at any time it accelerates the pace of development. Period. With each and every team member involved and collaborating via video in multipoint calls, it makes getting together to debug a new feature pretty simple, especially when teams don’t work in the same building or on the same schedule.
Grow Sales Reach
Last but not least, your sales team (while out there putting food on the table) might want a little help reaching their goals. Whether it comes down to nurturing potential opportunities, reaching new ones or building relationships – sales is all about video.
Video allows sales to utilize another critical element that is lost to audio calls: non-verbal communication. While we’ve said before, video doesn’t replace REAL face-to-face interaction, it certainly can help the salesperson on the other side of the world connect with an opportunity on a more personal level and read the true reactions of their customer. I’m definitely more likely to trust and listen to someone when their looking me directly in the eye.
Aside from it being a great tool for sales to reach prospects and leads, video is also cost efficient. Savings can be calculated from improvements like shortening the sales cycle and the ability to meet more customers in a day without feeling like “cold calling”.
One of the biggest factors contributing to our ability to track the impact of video communication efficiently has been analytics. Nobody has time to go and pull all the metrics from various video devices and then invest weeks in aligning and comparing them with business objectives. With video collaboration analytics, the data is summarized and presented in a way that can be parsed and pivoted in a wide variety of ways instantly by any user. In the enterprise IT world, analytics will remain king for this reason.