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Conference Calling – what is the best way?
Conference calls are an important facet of business, both nationally and internationally. Although email communication is widely used and can be helpful in bringing together ideas and responses from multiple people in a single thread, it is easy for conversations to be lost or to take a tangent and before long the email thread is a mish-mash of incoherent ideas, out of which no-one can pull a single story. Conference calls do away with this tendency to diverge from the topic at hand and also remove the risk of an important person missing an email or not being copied in on parts of the thread. They are set up as meetings within a business, bringing colleagues from dispersed locations together to discuss strategy and pitches, as well as between businesses and external clients.
Depending on the set up of the business, there may be several locations dotted around a region that need to communicate regularly, on general business matters and important clients or projects. Desk based speakerphone conference phones are ideal in these situations, as everyone involved in the call can be in a dedicated room without distractions and all able to contribute to the call, or at least take notes if they are not required to speak. As no-one has to hold a handset, everyone is free to make notes and even pass notes within the group. The conference call may involve two or more offices all using the same idea – multiple people in each location all collaborating on an idea. It may also involve several people in one office dealing with an individual in another, but whatever the basis of the communication a speakerphone is a must have for any office.
The big difference between the types of conference phone models is whether they have VoIP capability or not. Those without use traditional phone networks to connect people, but those with IP functionality, such as the Cisco CP-7937G allow for connection via the internet and therefore can be used with online conferencing facilities such as Skype. This means that instead of two locations being connected, it is possible for multiple people in several locations to connect, provided all have access to VoIP technology. This removes the usual bumbling around trying to patch in calls from different locations and centralizes the meeting. It also means that if phone lines are down due to bad weather or maintenance problems business can continue as normal, so in remote areas where this may be an issue a VoIP conference phone is a must.
Conference calls may also take the form of several individuals at different locations coming together. This is common on large projects where home workers, freelancers and office based employees are all working on a common goal but not in the same physical location. In these cases, a conference call once a week is an essential part of the project management process, as it ensures every party is aware of the progress on other aspects of the project. As this type of conference call is not between multiple groups, but between lots of individuals, a speakerphone model is not always used. Of course, an office based employee may choose to conduct the conference call from their suite, but the other parties will be joining in from other locations without this equipment. IP enabled headsets are perfect for all parties involved, as they can be used to connect to online conferencing facilities while leaving hands free for taking notes and updating project task lists.
Whether your conference calling needs fit into the former or latter category TruVoice Telecom has the solution for you, check out our incredible range of equipment today.