The global COVID-19 pandemic has taken a toll on the productivity of the organizations. Inevitably, to keep the losses at bay, organizations are shifting their operations online, and work-from-home is the new way of life.
If you have a personal computer or even a smartphone with a decent internet connection, you can schedule or join online meetings on a fly. With that being said, some still find it hard to get the hang of it while others like it the conventional way.
While the debate continues if the virtual environment will ever be a good alternative to the physical settings, the need for a fully-featured online tool for conducting business meetings has surely never been more serious.
A competent platform for conducting remote corporate meetings should essentially allow for a streamlined flow of data, diversity in interaction, and ease of accessibility.
The following are some of the best tools for initiating online business meetings that are loaded with several other exciting features in addition to the above-mentioned essentials.
- Web browser and app supported
- Enterprise Plan allows up to 3000 participants
- Cloud-enabled platform
- Can be launched using MS Office programs
Needless to say, GoToMeeting is one of the easiest and user-friendly options to host a business meeting remotely. Once you set up the free account, you can easily be a part of quick and efficient online meetings on the go.
Not only is GoToMeeting packed with essentials such as screen sharing, but it also sets the bar high with its cloud-enabled feature that takes care of recordings and chats backups automatically.
While the free mode enables you to set your foot in and explore a pretty decent business-meeting environment, it leaves a three-participants-per-session bottleneck.
However, things go seriously up a notch with its paid plans: entertaining up to 150 users with its basic plan, and up to 250 participants with the business plan. In addition, the latter further sweetens the deal with its executive mouse-sharing and drawing tool features.
- Active speaker view
- Integration with chrome and outlook
- Up to 49 HD on-screen videos
- Ten-year archive
As a reliable and notable name in the world of online professional meeting solutions, Zoom shines with its free plan—enabling up to 100 participants in a session, albeit at the expense of a 40-minute time limit. Despite the time cap, it can be said that its hand-raise feature, video recording, screen sharing options, and personal and group chat options make up for it.
You can take it a step further by its paid options and enjoy the possibility of interacting with up to 1000 participants without any time barrier and with solid end-to-end encryption and role-based security.
What’s more, recognizing the importance of non-verbal communication, Zoom supports up to 49 HD on-screen videos.
On top of everything, you can synchronize Zoom meetings with digital calendars and keep a backup of your meetings through its cloud storage and local saving options. The mouse and keyboard sharing options also make their way into its amazing characteristics.
- Call-me option – join the meeting by a phone call
- Webcasting: connect with up to 100,000 people
- Very strong security
- Presentation tools and streaming
Coming from a giant in the field of security and networking, Cisco, Webex stands as a strong contender in the list of efficient platforms for arranging online meetings and conferences.
Large Enterprises can find solace in the fact that Webex provides incredible security and heavy encryption. Consequently, it easily secures a spot in the league of the most trust-worthy options: enabling you to conduct meetings without having fear for the disclosure of data.
Even though the free version of the Webex puts a 40-minute time limit and keeps the participation to no more than 3 users, it packs High-definition Video, screen sharing, and 1 GB online storage. However, the shortcomings are compensated by the three paid options that include the possibilities for 50, 100, and 200 participants each.
- Permits up to 50 participants in free version
- Sign-up prerequisite allows for better security
- Can be integrated with MS Office
- Works for business interviews and webinars as well
Back to the basics, right?
Skype is a household name in the domain of video conferencing. Thanks to its competence, this powerful tool, along with the right equipment and planning, can be utilized for business meetings via live streaming.
Through the possibility of entertaining 50 people at a time, the free-tier of skype works great for small business meetings or group sessions. The screen-sharing option works just as well as in its stated counterparts, and the funky chat plays a good role in keeping the spirits of the participants up through the fun emoticons.
With that being said, Skype also features a paid version, Skype for Business, to cater to the sophisticated needs of the enterprises. Through this option, you can take the participant count to 250. Additionally, it is tailored with a possibility to be integrated with MS Office, besides having stronger security.
- Dolby Sound Support
- Mobile Access
- On-Demand Webcasting
- Auto-assigning action
- Calendar Integration
A relatively modern tool, BlueJeans packs all the qualities of a typical remote corporate meeting platform, together with futuristic aspects such as auto-assigning of actions and other collaborative tools. Besides, if you have a liking for hi-fi sound quality, you would love to know that BlueJeans come with a Dolby sound feature.
Unlike others in the list, BlueJeans doesn’t have a free version, but it comes with a 30-day free trial to get you acquainted with its amazing settings. Not to mention, it doesn’t fall short on any of the expected features of a good video-conferencing solution, including, but not limited to, screen sharing, electronic hand-raise, presentation tools, HD-Audio, recordability, and private chat.
Putting its paid packages under the spotlight, the entry-level option supports up to 50 participants. On the other hand, the two remaining packages entertain 75 and 150 people each, in addition to the top of the line factors such as command center dashboard, cloud storage, and calendar support.
Regardless of the efficiency and competence of the program, it pretty much depends on the host to make the most of it. Once you analyze the needs and wishes in regards to the online communication service, it would be time to explore it inside out and seek out ways to make it more engaging.
Pour your heart out in the comment section as we always love to hear your thoughts on the subject at hand. Lastly, in this time of catastrophe, take good care of yourself and others around you.