Working from home has now become the “new norm”, with 55% of US workers claiming its success with their current industry. As most business meetings now take place online, it helps to have the right space and technology for a quality video conference setup.
Avoid audio lags, erratic video performance, and chaotic online discussion with our top tips to improve your video conferencing for 2020 and beyond.
Have a proper camera/audio setup
Your first step to improving video conferences is to ensure a high-quality camera and audio setup.
While some users may be able to rely on their built-in laptop cameras, many fall short of the video quality a professional conference needs, often displaying grainy, pixelated footage. If you’re joining or hosting daily meetings online, it may be worth improving your video performance by investing in an external webcam. Plenty of high-quality options are available, including the 1080P webcams offered by leading brands like Logitech.
Likewise, it’s important to make sure your audio is crystal clear. If your voice sounds fuzzy, distorted, or weighed down with unnecessary background noise, investing in an external USB microphone may just offer the quality boost you need.
Pick a quiet, well-lit environment
Set up your video conferencing space in an appropriate, well-lit area. If you live with other people, select a quiet room or environment where you can maintain privacy. Let others know of your meeting to avoid unnecessary disturbances, and try to keep pets or children at bay. If necessary, be sure to let your colleagues know if you need to temporarily step away from the call.
Additionally, ensure proper lighting and a neutral background to maintain a sense of professionalism. Be sure to sit in front of your lighting source (i.e., a window, lamp, or ring light), to create a sharp, clear view of your face. Having a clean, plain background can also reduce on-camera distractions. If necessary, Skype users can always choose to blur their background, while Zoom users can select a temporary virtual backdrop.
Know your video conferencing etiquette
Though it may be online, video conferences should have the same etiquette as physical, face-to-face ones: all members should arrive on time, avoid talking over each other, and pay attention as others are speaking. The additional digital tools at your disposal can also help ensure a pleasant experience for everyone.
For instance, users have the option of muting their mic as others are talking, effectively blocking out white or background noise coming from their end. The chat function can be used to ask questions while a member is speaking, helping avoid audible interruption. Finally, screen sharing options are available to help guide members through specific projects or assignments. Note that you should take the time to close personal applications, activities, or programs before actually sharing your screen (i.e., open chat messengers, internet browser tabs, sensitive information, etc.).
Ensure a stable internet connection
Above all else, a reliable internet connection is most critical to ensuring a smooth, enjoyable video conferencing experience. Slow, unstable speeds can result in choppy audio and video performance, sometimes freezing or stopping your call altogether.
Use free speed test tools to ensure optimum internet speeds and if necessary, move closer to your router for a faster connection. Before starting your call, close any unused or irrelevant applications, and make sure all computer and browser updates have been implemented.
Those living with others can request other internet users to temporarily withhold data-intensive activities, such as online games, streaming, and downloading, until after your call.
Boost your work from home experience with quality IT!
As we increasingly shift to long-term remote work arrangements, it helps to have the right technology on hand. From cybersecurity to VoIP solutions, Founders Technology can offer your business all the services and support it needs to navigate these changes. Inquire with us today to learn more.