7 Trends Shaping The Future Of Digital Conferences

Digital conferencing has never been simpler. There are hundreds of online resources for hosting online conference calls or video meetings. Some of these tools have extras like screen sharing services, and almost all of them have global reach. Here are seven trends shaping the future of this thriving industry.

1. The Rise Of Video Chat

Video chatting and sharing have risen to become some of the main ways that modern people communicate. The ability to host high-definition video chats with anyone anywhere in the world has completely revolutionized how we communicate.

With social media apps including virtual conference platforms, their entire user base is able to access this technology; putting the power of video chatting in the palm of your hand. Paid services are constantly being forced to update and expand services to compete with their free-of-charge counterparts.

Screen share software is just one example of additional services offered by some digital conference services, but others include cloud storage and sharing, unlimited users, etc.

2. More Remote Workers Than Ever Before

The internet has made connecting with and hiring remote workers as simple as clicking a button and loading a website. Remote workers are effective and can help a company save money on things like office space and overhead costs.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, in 2015, 23% of employees reported doing at least some of their work remotely. That’s nearly a quarter of the US workforce. With remote workers, communication is the number one priority.

Digital conferencing allows you to stay in contact with all of your remote workers, regardless of their location. You can even host meetings with each of them or all at once, right from your desktop.

3. Landlines Are Disappearing

While many businesses still utilize landlines, the service has seen a steady decline since the introduction of mobile phones and digital conferencing services. A costly landline is no longer required to host conference calls or long distance meetings.

With the fall of the landline, the digital conference world has stepped up to fill the niche. The modern business world requires much more than a simple phone line for effective meetings, especially with remote clients or workers.

Digital conferencing has filled this need, offering much more than just a place to host phone calls. Cloud storage and screen sharing have become standards, as well as a global reach without extra international charges.

4. Increased Need For Collaboration

Collaboration across countries and businesses is a top priority in the modern business world, and digital conferencing has provided an excellent catalyst for the successful implementation of this practice.

Modern teams need to collaborate quickly and effectively, often sharing data and requiring in-depth meetings that couldn’t happen without digital conferencing services. Conferences can be recorded and are usually broadcast in high-definition, giving an almost in person feel to digital meetings.

5. Increased Need For Flexibility

Flexibility is needed like never before in our fast-paced world. Digital conferencing makes flexibility easy to attain, putting you into conference calls and meetings from anywhere in the world at any time.

Employers often require certain levels of flexibility from their employees, but don’t offer much in the way of returning the favor. As of 2018, however, employers will have to take a serious look at flexibility in their workplace.

Flexibility actually increases customer and employee satisfaction. Not to mention, employees are demanding more flexibility than ever before. With busy lives that include everything from multiple jobs to raising children, a workplace’s flexibility can be a serious asset to its employees.

6. The Push Towards “Greener” Business Practices

Digital conferences have actually had an impact on the planet; in a good way. Digital conferences and meetings don’t require you to drive your car to the meeting, (cutting C02 emissions)  nor hand out paperwork (many conference services offer digital sharing options instead).

Business travel accounts for a large majority of carbon emissions (see the calculator here to figure out your own expenses). We may not realize it, but traveling to business meetings can run up gas costs, and therefore higher emissions from our vehicles.

Additionally, paper waste accounts for a very large percentage of business waste. With the rise of digital conference services, materials can be shared digitally, and therefore no paper-expensive handouts or forms are necessary.

7. Globalization Of Business

We live in a global market. Business is conducted across borders and oceans, with companies all over the world. Meeting in person can be tricky when your client or colleague is halfway across the world.

The globalization of business has created a larger demand for better avenues of communication. Digital conferences make communicating across the world simple and effective, with platforms reaching anywhere with an internet connection.

Being able to speak directly with clients and partners outside of your country helps strengthen your relationship, both in business and on a personal level. With high definition video conferencing, you can get to know the person you’re working with and actually see them during the meeting.

Body language is an important part of communication, which makes video conferencing essential to any good business relationship. Since you can’t meet in person every time, using video conferencing is an effective alternative to getting to really know your clients.

The Take-Away

Digital Conferences have risen to fill a niche that has developed with the introduction of mobile-based services and the decline of landlines. The rise in remote teams makes communication across effective platforms more valuable than ever.

Adam Hansen

Adam is a part time journalist, entrepreneur, investor and father.