A Useful Guide to Video Calling: Best Practices

Many in-person interactions like job interviews, pitch meetings, brainstorming sessions, and team-building events can be replaced with video calls. Video calling eliminates travel, making it possible for distributed teams to stay connected without losing the benefits of face-to-face communication. Specific common strategies can improve calling experiences regardless of the video calling tool. Here are the top recommendations:

1. Invest in the technology
Preparation is essential if teams have an important video meeting scheduled. It is not only about the content shared at the meeting but also about the technology employed. It is usually good to double-check everything before the scheduled video chat. A checklist will ensure that everything goes smoothly when preparing for a video conference.

Keeping this in mind, users should ensure that cameras or microphones are working correctly. If on a call with numerous people or a team, users should double-check their equipment and ascertain that appropriate lighting is available to see their faces. This might involve ensuring that there is no direct sunlight and, if available, utilizing shades or curtains.

2. Use unified communications and UCaaS
The infrastructure for video conferencing is based on communications applications such as audio, video, web conferencing, and phone management. Unified communications as a service (UCaaS) is a method of connecting all communications apps. Whether your company uses Salesforce to manage leads, Workday for human resources, or SAP for finance processes – a UCaaS app is crucial to keeping communication integrated and driving internal efficiency.

UCaaS simplifies all user’s communications as part of their video conferencing infrastructure, ensuring everyone is always on the same page. The centralized platform allows team members to contact one another with a single click and retrieve vital information from previous video meetings.

3. Prioritize security as well as interoperability
Security is a significant worry in video conferencing, especially as the technology’s applications expand. Telehealth is becoming popular for video conferencing platforms; however, privacy restrictions limit how they can be utilized, including what features may be enabled and who can access them. Administrators should look for elements like sign-on protocols and integrity, role-based access, and a solid set of administrative controls for security management.

Further, interoperability allows users to connect regardless of their platform. In a large business, people use a variety of video conferencing platforms. It is not always possible or practical to require that everyone use the same software. For this reason, interoperability is crucial for businesses.

To establish a safe, dynamic communication experience, a high-quality, secure workplace video conferencing solution should function well with other productivity software and current security frameworks. Interoperability and security must go hand in hand.

4. Drive video calling productivity through screen-sharing and whiteboarding
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Sharing a screen is an excellent way to keep everyone on the same page, especially when working on a brainstorming project. It also allows for a more dynamic and fluid conversation since people can easily reference what’s on the screen.

Users can present or explain topics clearly and concisely via screen-sharing. Some apps, like Zoom, even allow users to share a presentation as a background to make it feel more like they are in the room. This is a great way to keep everyone engaged, especially if the meeting is longer.

Another way to ensure alignment and prevent miscommunication is whiteboarding. Participants in a 1-on-1 video conference can use specific tools to create, insert, and update text and visual data in a separate window using the whiteboard function. Users can collaborate on existing files or make new ones using a whiteboard. Users can also choose from various editing tools, work on several files simultaneously, and block the page with the editing file.

5. Try out recording in-call chat
Most video conferencing software comes with a recording feature. This can be useful if the user needs to record the meeting for future reference. Before using this tool, it is essential to test it to ensure it works correctly. The chat feature is a great way to boost the efficiency of video calls. Most video calling software includes a messaging capability that allows public and private discussion boards. Users can use the chat box to type them out if they have questions or comments. This is also a good way to share links and files during the call.

6. Optimize the video call schedule
Disorganizing video calls can disrupt productivity and hamper your work-life balance. If participants are unsure about the agenda, the host keeps changing topics, or the conversation goes on for hours, it can be challenging to stay on track.

The best way to avoid this is to schedule the call ahead of time and create an optimized calendar. It is also good to create an agenda and send it out beforehand, so everyone knows what will be discussed. Another best practice is to schedule quiet hours for yourself and group multiple meetings so that face-to-face collaboration does not get in the way of independent work. Most video calling software will provide the tools to achieve this.

The bottom line

Due to pandemic-induced remote and hybrid work, video conferencing usage for business has increased dramatically. Whether employees are remote or in the office, users must adapt to the changing work environment to make the most of what is quickly becoming a crucial productivity and collaboration tool. These best practices can help users stay collaborative and productive in every video call – from organizing the next major marketing campaign with their entire team to a one-on-one ad hoc testing session.

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