When it comes to understanding how collaboration services are delivered, there is much discussion surrounding cloud-based options versus on-premise and everything in between. The language used to describe the design of these services can be somewhat confusing and many of the terms are often used in the wrong way to make understanding them every more challenging! Let’s start by discussing cloud services themselves. What is a Cloud Service? A cloud service is basically any service or resource that is delivered via the internet or other remote network. There are several classifications of cloud services, including: Software as a Service (SaaS): These services deliver software …

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This Week in Collaboration

September 27, 2013, by Danielle Downs in Industry News

Welcome to our bi-weekly recap of the weeks’ best articles surrounding collaboration.  1. Polycom Video Solutions help keep NATO personnel ready for the next crisis, diplomatic mission or humanitarian effort Announcement around NATO’s decision to use Polycom’s RealPresence Platform as the backbone of their video collaboration environment. By utilizing video conferencing, NATO is hoping to streamline decision making and communication as well as reducing travel costs. 2. SPAR saves time and money with video conferencing This post showcases UK based grocery chain SPAR, and how deploying video has saved the company both time and money. Their main use case was around their multiple executive meetings that …

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For companies looking to dive in to this mobile video craze, having a solid plan of attack is very important. Not only will it help determine the technology requirements, it ensures a consistent user experience for all participants involved. The first step in developing a mobile video strategy is to define the organization’s video environment. This focuses on determining the following key areas: End users Video devices & applications Meeting types Current video equipment Goals & objectives Essentially, this means organizations should outline who will be using mobile video, what devices these participants will be connecting with, what types of meetings will be conducted, and the objectives …

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5 Lessons I Have Learned From Telecommuting

September 20, 2013, by Danielle Downs in Collaboration

I saw a news clip about the rise in telecommuting on CBS the other day and I echoed many of the sentiments from my fellow telecommuters. I also have a confession to make, what I looked forward to the most was the ability to wear sweatpants to the “office.” The first week or two I would go to my closet each morning grinning as I bi-passed my slacks and skirts en route to my sweatpants drawer. However, I quickly learned that getting ready in the same way I would when going in to an office, was very important for my “workday” mindset. Now …

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What is Collaboration? – Infographic

September 18, 2013, by Danielle Downs in Collaboration

Collaboration means different things to different people. But at the end of the day it’s all about connecting people and giving them the ability to work together. The need for these types of connections continue to grow as workforces become more global and dispersed. When people are connected they can share ideas, brainstorm on new initiatives, collaborate on deliverables and so much more. We created the below infographic to highlight the many forms that collaboration can take, what some of the benefits are, where collaboration happens and the tools available.

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Huddle Up and Collaborate

September 17, 2013, by Adam Kaiser in Collaboration

Organizations are investing in collaboration tools and environments as the importance becomes increasingly prevalent. Not to mention, many organizations have recently started to break down walls (figuratively and literally) in offices. Companies are eliminating office spaces and creating open floor plans to facilitate interaction among colleagues. Physical spaces, namely conference rooms, where employees can gather to work on deliverables or projects are necessary components to facilitate collaboration. However, since these rooms are shared resources, scheduling is necessary to make sure meetings don’t interrupt each other. This can be frustrating for teams who want to meet spontaneously. With that in mind, huddle spaces …

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This Week in Collaboration

September 13, 2013, by Danielle Downs in Industry News

Welcome to our bi-weekly recap of the weeks’ best articles surrounding collaboration.  1. Mobile Video Collaboration Cisco explains what they are doing to better their infrastructure and technology to better suit mobile video needs. Those needs include high quality audio, video, and application sharing. 2. Video conferencing for your business This article explains to some of the use cases and benefits of using video conferencing as opposed to audio conferencing for meetings.  It also briefly speaks to the different visual collaboration tools available. 3. Polycom enables Green Cross International 20(th) Anniversary Earth Dialogues Conference to Deliver Interactive, Live Broadcast from the United Nations Details about how Green Cross International …

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Video Enabled Supply Chain Drives Retail Growth

September 12, 2013, by Lisa Avvocato in Cisco, Telepresence

The benefits of visual collaboration are expansive and cross just about every job function and industry. European retail giant Kingfisher recently sat down for a Cisco case study to discuss how collaboration technologies have helped overcome challenges in their supply chain,  improving profitability and shortening product development cycles. One of the biggest challenges Kingfisher faced was how to connect direct sourcing suppliers located in Asia, with buyers and quality control teams located in Europe.  Not only was travel time consuming and expensive, the entire product design process was lengthy and cumbersome as people had to physically handle product prototypes, artwork or …

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Video Conferencing Security Basics

September 10, 2013, by Lisa Avvocato in Cloud Services, Video Conferencing

Video conferencing security continues to make news every now and then. Last year, it was HD Moore who hacked into conference rooms around the globe and this year German magazine Der Spiegel said the NSA hacked into the United Nations video conferencing system. In the wake of these events, many users of video conferencing get worried and some get downright paranoid.  However, video can be extremely secure if it is configured properly. All standards-based video conferencing systems include 128-bit AES encryption which secures the audio and video data being sent between users. Encrypting the audio and video packets prevents hackers from …

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With the next generation of executives taking control over established companies, new changes are bound to arise. The 2013 Cisco Global Young Executives’ Video Attitudes Survey shows that many of these new managers are interested in video collaboration and plan on incorporating it into their business or company. Many new managers understand the benefits video can provide for their company, and some will not even consider working with other companies unless they use it as a tool. The convenience of video conferencing is something that many young executives and managers are taking advantage of because it allows participants to read visual …

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