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Photo of a video conference in progress (Photo-Shutterstock.com)

5 mistakes that could cost you big when sourcing for a video conferencing tool

by Jessica McClennen

The wrong video conferencing tool could land your teams in a world of trouble. if you don’t want to see them having a tough time trying to get things done because of an ineffective video solution, here are a few pitfalls you’ll want to look out for:

Mistake #1: Not knowing what they need

Choosing the best video solution doesn’t mean just going online, buying the first one you see and hoping for the best. With so many options out there now, the market has gotten a whole lot crowded during the last few years.

That means more options which is both the good and bad news. With so many choices in the market, it can be tough to zero in on the right one. However, that also means you have a better chance of finding a system that works for your team and company as more and more systems become available.

What You Can Do: Filter through the glut by asking your team what they need. Don’t decide on your own. Your team is going to end up using the system most of the time. That means they have a right to pick what works for them.

Mistake #2: Going for complex systems

A boatload of extras won’t matter if the system is complex, tough to understand and difficult to use. The point is to go with something that makes the work more convenient. If the system is impeding your team’s productivity and performance, then ditch that solution for a better one. For instance, one of the popular video conferencing options available is GoToMeeting. This tool offers a free trial period and offers multiple package options for consumers.

However, it does not rate very high in regards to the ease of setup, use and administrative support. The last thing you want is your team being hampered by an inefficient tool.

What You Can Do: Go with a better choice. Even though a free trial period is not offered, the BlueJeans video conference tool is still a popular option in the market worth considering. It’s simple and easy to use, despite packing a wide range of premium features.

Mistake #3: Lack of research

If you aren’t doing your homework, you could end up choosing a system that isn’t compatible with a lot of third party apps out there, says Tech Target. That might not sound too bad, until it’s time to share content during a web conference and your system refuses to accept word or excel files. That’s going to mean extra time converting the materials into a compatible version. It’s extra effort and work you don’t need. That’s why it’s smarter to opt for a video conferencing solution that's compatible with the run of apps you use.

What You Can Do: It’s not enough to check system features. Be sure to take a look at the system’s compatibility issues. If it’s incompatible with many of the third-party programs you use, it makes sense to leave that system behind and look for something else. If you’re thorough with your research, you’ll know if it’s a compatible option or not right from the get-go.

Mistake #4: Forgetting about playback 

The playback option allows you to rewind your meetings. That’s handy if there are things you forgot or want some clarification on. This feature makes it the ideal training tool as well. With more businesses discovering the benefits of training remote or offsite employees via video, the playback feature gives users the chance to rewind training videos for reference and clarification. When you shop around for a video conferencing system, be sure to keep an eye out for this one. If you buy the basic model, with only the essentials covered, you could miss out on the advantages that this feature could bring to the table for your team.

What You Can Do: Always check if the system comes with playback. By investing in a system that packs this feature along, you and your team can have access to accurate information, says Crowd Reviews.

Mistake #5: Not preparing for the future

It’s all well and good to pick a video conferencing tool that’s suited to your needs right now. But those needs will change over time. When that happens, will your video solution be able to keep up? It’s not going to be wise to simply assume your organizational needs will remain constant. Changing market conditions mean you’ll have to adjust right along with current trends or risk being outmoded and obsolete.

What You Can Do: Always keep an eye on the future. Pick a video system that gives you room to scale your operations. That way, if you have to downsize or expand in the future, you can do so with ease. You won’t be limited by the system in any way, allowing you to be more flexible in your communication strategy. That’s the kind of system you should want for your team.

Lack of foresight, preparation and information could lead you in the wrong direction. If you don’t want to waste money on the wrong video solution, keep your eyes peeled for these mistakes.