buying web conferencing

A web conferencing software purchase can be a daunting proposition. Collaboration solutions touch every aspect of your business, and require coordination and execution from your network team all the way up through line of business owners and the C-suite.

There are a few tips to keep in mind and questions to ask while evaluating a web conferencing purchase. And of course, you can always chat with an expert if you need more help!

Prioritize Ease of Use

It’s easy to get so caught up in pricing, infrastructure needs, deployment concerns, etc that you forget to evaluate how easy a tool is to use. You have to remember that your employees are all at different levels of comfort with technology, and a confusing, unintuitive tool will simply frustrate them. And frustrated employees will often fallback on their deskphone or email, leaving you with an item on your budget that’s going unused.

Make simple, effortless web conferencing a priority when comparing different solutions, almost above all other features. It will make all the difference in your employees’ productivity and your company’s ROI.

Security is Paramount

Regardless of your industry or company size, the security of your business data is absolutely essential, particularly in this modern age of cyberattacks and identity theft. Web conferences are often places to discuss sensitive information, product road maps, acquisition targets or any number of subjects that could negatively impact your business if they were spied upon. And in fact, many industries require a certain level of security and encryption by law, such as law firms or financial services.

Leverage your own internal security and IT resources to really press a web conferencing provider on the strength and breadth of their security and encryption. They should be able to provide detailed resources on how they’re keeping your (and their) data safe and secure. And remember: free, consumer-level online meeting tools won’t offer anywhere close to the level of security a business really needs.

Don’t Forget the Audio

Web conferences contain a wide range of useful features: webcam video, screen and file sharing, annotation and other real-time collaboration tools, etc. But don’t let all of these features distract you from one of the absolute most important aspects of any collaboration tool: its audio.

Without consistent, high-quality audio integrated into your web conference, your meetings become frustrating if not impossible. Carefully review how your web conferencing provider integrates audio into its product. Are they leveraging a third-party service with potential inconsistencies and quality issues? Do they provide global access and language support for your audio users? These are all questions you have to ask.

Mobility is King

Finally, today’s workforce is increasingly mobile, and your web conferencing tool should be too. Don’t forget to carefully vet a web conferencing tool’s mobile apps for smartphones and tablets for ease of use, feature set and more. There’s no excuse in today’s mobility-driven workplace to settle for a sub-par or feature-restricted mobile web conference. Your remote and flexible workers should be able to host and participate in fully-featured web conferences, even while on-the-go!

Looking for more tips for buying web conferencing? Download the free “Buyer’s Guide to Web Conferencing” today!