Effective intra-company communication plays an enormously important role in a given company’s path to success. It has to be stated that along with such aspects as flexibility, the speed of applying necessary changes, innovations and data accessibility, co
Effective intra-company communication plays an enormously important role in a given company’s path to success. It has to be stated that along with such aspects as flexibility, the speed of applying necessary changes, innovations and data accessibility, communication is another decisive factor in increasing a given company’s lead over its rivals on the market. The establishment of the best possible communication patterns is crucial for every enterprise, regardless of its trade. By communication patterns we mean the communication between employees of the same level, the communication between employees and their managers and the choice of the best suiting method of data exchange.
The importance of effective communication
An effective system of communication must fulfill certain criteria. It has to suit everyone, fulfill the vast needs and expectations of the staff; it should be modern and as flexible as possible so that changes can be easily applied. These factors are very similar to the ones deemed crucial for the overall success of a company. Effective communication is an essential element that establishes the right path for a given company’s development. Thanks to communication we can establish adequate methods of overcoming rivaling enterprises that work in the same trade, or those which offer the same goods to our target audience.
Regardless of the level of management at which decisions are made, an effective system of communication plays an increasingly important role in all decision making processes including those carried out on the top of the company’s hierarchy. The management board and supervisors are well aware of that fact, so they strive to develop a system that would prove to be effective for intra-company communication in a given enterprise. Company owners have many modern communication systems at their disposal, including computer based ones. The introduction of a software based communication system accessible to all staff significantly improves data exchange between the employees. It is far more effective to work in such conditions as every member of the workforce knows precisely what result will his actions bring. At the same time, everyone is aware of the large scale goal of the whole project or even of the goal of the entire enterprise.
Recently, many large, modern companies are beginning to incorporate video conference systems into their communication networks. Video conferences enable near-instant communication between employees, even if they are spread across different continents.
Video conferences – the new method of communication.
It has to be stated that video conferences are rapidly gaining ground in companies; they draw a lot of interest. Most of all, they breach geographical barriers. There is no need for personal conferences between managers of various departments of a given company because such meetings can be easily arranged in cyberspace.
Nowadays, video conferences are popular almost exclusively among great concerns and international corporations which have their departments spread throughout the world. To a large extent, they reduce the costs of personal company meetings, but at the same time they require funds for the establishment of communication infrastructure. The costs include computer hardware, software and appropriate telephone or internet connections. The overall costs, though, are smaller than in the case of traditional communication i.e. personal meetings or phone conversations.
Thanks to the rapid development of computers and Information Technology, totally new means of communication appear which are available even to smaller companies. The funds necessary for the implementation of essential internet communication software decrease significantly. Modern IT technologies make our lives easier. They are also an ideal solution to the problem of intra-company communication. It is much easier to exchange information by using email or appropriate messenger applications than to search for a specific person in our company or to make a call to another department in some foreign country.
There are many computer programs that make it easy to quickly arrange a meeting in a virtual environment by means of the Internet. Moreover, such solutions are usually far cheaper when compared to traditional forms of communication. A few years back, the costs connected with arranging a video conference were so high that small companies were unable to use them in practice. Small businesses simply couldn’t afford them. Nowadays, the situation changed radically. In order to arrange a meeting in cyberspace, all we need is to buy a notebook for about 1500-2000zł (about 330-435£ as of 5.04.2011), see to it that it is equipped with speakers, a microphone and a webcam and pay for the internet connection. Once we do that, we are ready to proceed with video conferences that will facilitate the communication within our company.
It should be mentioned that the tools we use in our communication system have to be appropriately protected so that confidential information does not fall into the wrong hands. Otherwise, they shouldn’t be used in our enterprise in decision making processes.
Polish solutions for modern communication
Polish programmers have created a special application designed for online video conferences. The meetings are completely secure so that people responsible for making decisions need not worry about confidential information that is often exchanged during such video conferences. Polish IT specialists are well aware of the fact that there are certain dangers that pose a threat to online communication applications and confidential data. If the confidentiality of business procedures is of utmost importance to us, then we shouldn’t use totally amateur solutions when it comes to communication software applications.
Fully modern, professional communication solutions for companies and institutions ensure high security of the meetings and confidentiality of the exchanged data. The safety is guaranteed by the programs’ creators who, in order to protect the application from security leaks, use dual-layer protection systems. Such protection systems cooperate with the most popular of today’s firewalls. They are able, by default, to encrypt data without resorting to some other, external systems, i.e. peer-2-peer solutions.
A reliable entrepreneur who is aware of the threats posed to communication systems will take good care of the knowledge and data at his disposal as they are the most important element contributing to his company’s proper functioning.
The structure of video conference programs
The solutions for modern methods of communication aren’t commonly used in Polish businesses. Few companies know how to organize a video conference, and even fewer people use this method of communication on a daily basis. It is still very common to see people of various departments of the same company talking with each other on the phone, even though they are located in different cities. It has to be stated here that very often, almost in every case, such phone calls require more money than the establishment of a communication system based on video conferences. At the same time, video conference applications are a very effective means of communication while remaining cheap to maintain.
The advantages of computer communication systems based on video conference applications:
There is no need for renting special, adequately prepared conference rooms. Moreover, there is no need to buy any additional equipment – all we need is a computer with access to the Internet, a microphone and a webcam. Video conferences can be held in any place, not necessarily in an office.
It is possible to carry out intra-company deliberations regardless of whether or not every member of the staff is physically present in the company’s office at the time of the meeting.
In the case of business communication applications, users have access to the ‘Whiteboard’ option. Furthermore, every authorized user of a given video conference has access to an application that allows him or her to work on the same document as other authorized users.
The application highlights specific user-defined elements in a document and allows for editing, correcting and implementation of other changes. If the members of the conference agree on the final version of the document, it can be saved and sent to proper addressees via the communication system.
Some video conference applications make it possible to carry out virtual voting or a survey among the conference’s participants. The accumulated results can be presented on the basis of charts. They can be also saved as a specially prepared report which can be generated on the basis of a given video conference.
It is possible to prepare online presentations. This possibility is a great advantage for sales and marketing directors who no longer have to go to their clients. They can present their offer and particular points of the project in a virtual environment.
There are no limits as to the minimum and maximum number of participants that can simultaneously participate in a video conference.
State-of-the-art communication systems are equipped with advanced administrative options that allow for the management of user accounts with the possibility to establish some specific authorization.
Modern technology made it somewhat necessary for enterprises to change their approach to communication processes. Nowadays, nobody is surprised to hear that conferences take place online. Instead of travelling for hundreds of kilometers to meet their contractors personally, businessmen prefer to launch their video conference applications. Undoubtedly, such communication systems help save a lot of money and time. They also help make offers more attractive and can surprise potential clients. Companies which make extensive use of state-of-the-art communication systems increase their chances against their competition.