Small Business Tech Tip #5: Don’t Skimp on Conferencing Tools

A group of professionals use video conferencing tools to interact.

Video conferencing is a very popular business tool.

We conclude our Small Businesses Technology Tips blog series this week with a post on everything you need to know about today’s conferencing tools. Read on to discover how technology can make your meetings more efficient than ever.

Video Conferencing

Facetime is important. Nearly 100% percent of people agreed that face to face meetings are an essential part of doing business. Unfortunately, it isn’t always possible to be in person at every meeting. When that happens, video conferencing is the next best thing.

Whether you need to conference someone into a meeting or meet with several people at once, there are so many great apps to choose from. There are several other perks to video conferencing, such as screen-sharing, adding landline callers, and the ability to record and save your meetings.

File Sharing

File sharing is a great way to make sure that everyone in your meeting is literately on the same page. If you are leading the meeting with a slide show, you can give everyone in the room the option to view the slides on their own computer. Instead of emailing edits back and forth, you can create an editable document that your co-workers can collaborate on at the same time. Sharing information has never been simpler!

Audio Conferencing

Sometimes video contact isn’t always possible, in such cases, phone conferences are another great way to hold a meeting.  Most video conferencing apps have the options of audio only. We can’t always be in front of a computer though, and in those cases, phone conferencing is a great tool.

Hosted phones make audio conferencing simple and convenient.  Join in on a phone conference from anywhere, as easily as if you were in the office. Forward all your calls to your cell phone, so that you can conference on the go. Use Outlook365 ingratiation to find the contact information for everyone in your network, and to conveniently schedule your calls. Place your phone on Do Not Disturb, to prevent unwanted interruptions, and choose specific people who can join into the call.


Unified Communications

Unified Communications could easily fit under any of these tips. UC is the “unification” of all your businesses “communication” platforms. E-mail, IM, Video Conferencing, Phone, and more all neatly packaged together. Effortlessly switch between the apps and devices with your Unified Communications Client. The UC Client is the platform your small business chooses to use. Through the UC Client, all of your employees can conduct business separately, while still outwardly being seen as a single corporate identity and number.

Finding the Right Tool for Your Business

Here are some of the most popular conferencing tools on the market today.

App Pros Cons
Google Hangouts   Free 

  Can add Landlines


  Mobile Friendly

  Cannot Remove Someone from the Chat.

  Does Not Integrate Google Docs or Gmail

  Users need a Google+ Account to Join.

 Zoom     Can add people via phone 

    Remote Screen Control

  Best Features Require Purchase.

  Time and Participation Limits for Free Users

  Remote Screen Control

  Mobile Friendly

  Requires purchase

  Limited participants

Skype For Business   Outlook 365 Integrated

  Very User-Friendly

  Requires Office 365 Account.

More Tech Tips from OTELCO

As a rural telecommunications provider, OTELCO has a unique understanding of what a small business needs to succeed. That is why we created our Small Business Tech Tips guide, to give small business the tech knowledge they need to flourish.

All the solutions in the books are based on our own best practices, and the practices we have helped so many other businesses find success with. We are confident that this guide will help you take your business to the next level.

Download your Free Business Technology Guide