One of the primary reasons why companies are opting to host online business meetings instead of relying on traditional methods, like email and telephone conference calls, is because of the ability to collaborate in real time with other participants. Emailing others and waiting for them to reply can slow down progress when working on projects, and phone calls do not allow the visual aspect of a face to face meeting to improve the collaboration that takes place over the phone. A virtual meeting allows the convenience of being able to interact without being in the same physical location, but also allows the same interaction that takes place in a face to face meeting. Zoom meetings has taken the following five strategies of real time collaboration and implemented them into the zoom video conferencing experience.
1 – Screen Sharing
The first strategy is the ability to use screen sharing to allow all of the participants to be able to see the same thing on the host’s screen. This allows the person hosting the meeting to show a number of different things throughout their presentation. And since it is in real time, there is no worry about the transition from one thing to the next delaying the meeting. It also does not require the participants to have access to more supporting documentation before the meeting because everyone can easily follow along with the host during a Zoom meeting.
2 – Instant Messaging
Everyone has been in a meeting and something mentioned by the presenter has resulted in an idea or thought crossing a participant’s mind that they need to share with another person. Or there is a document that someone needs to share with another participant as a result of the meeting. Even if a note is written down, it may be easily forgotten. With the use of instant messaging it is possible for everyone to send a quick message to another participant privately or file share a document in real time. But even more importantly, instant messaging helps to ensure the meeting is not disrupted and able to continue.
3 – Whiteboarding
The use of a whiteboard is common in many business meetings, and is often on the wall in a number of conference rooms. But when in a virtual meeting the ability to use a whiteboard is not as easy as it is in a face to face meeting. Zoom video conferencing has resolved this problem by offering a whiteboard feature where meeting participants can collaborate with one another in real time. As annotations are made, the whiteboard can then be saved as part of the meeting for easy reference, also eliminating the need for someone to take meeting notes allowing everyone to engage using the online collaboration tools in real time.
4 – Group Chat
As the name suggests, group chat is literally the entire group being able to chat or text with one another while the meeting is going on. This online collaboration tool is also in real time, and allows participants to make note of something they want to say or send information to the group without disrupting the speaker or a presentation that might be going on at the time. An additional benefit of group chat, is when a Zoom meeting is saved, all of the meetings is able to be saved as part of the notes, including the group chat.
5 – Breakout Rooms
The use of breakout groups or sessions is common when attending a seminar or training, and even in a number of different business meetings. Zoom meetings make it possible to take this collaboration tool and apply it to a web meeting. As the meeting goes on, the host can break participants into separate sessions so they can continue to use collaboration tools to be more productive in the meeting.