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Video Conferencing Helping to Green Manufacturing

A survey of 392 CEOs from the Australian manufacturing, services and construction sectors by KPMG and the Australian Industry Group, revealed manufacturers are doing more to reduce their carbon emissions than their counterparts in services or construction. Of manufacturers reducing carbon emissions, 22% are making use of improved IT such as video conferencing.

According to KPMG, a low-carbon economy is no longer an ‘if’ but a ‘when’ and businesses needed to start taking account of their emissions levels. “It’s essential for business to move beyond a simple compliance focus to a comprehensive business strategy that creates value and competitive advantage.”

Video conferencing is the perfect solution with its measurable ROI and carbon offsets. Volkswagen knows this first hand. They cut vehicle repair time by over 50% and reduced costs by 30% by deploying experts via video who didn’t have to travel as much to supervise repairs.

Watch the Volkswagen video case study:

Retail Winners Cite Green IT as Cornerstone for Success

A new report from the Retail Industry Leaders Association, “Real-World Green: The Role of Environmental Savings in Retail,” surveyed “Retail Winners” (those retailers whose sales outperform their competitors’) and found that going green is rapidly creating a strategic advantage in all corners of the enterprise, and has become a major component of the planning for any new IT investment. Specifically, the survey respondents cited the following motivations for adopting green technologies, all of which -- but the last -- can directly be accomplished through video conferencing and telepresence. Just more proof that being green equals green.

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Are you ready for H1N1's comeback?

July 23, 2009 at 10:48 am PST

I just read an interesting story out of San Diego Jails, which have been battling an issue with the H1N1 virus. It seems that the virus has made a number of guards and inmates ill and there was a very high exposure rate.

As the virus continues to spread during the summer, one can only imagine the disruptions that may be caused when more people gather in confined environments like schools and office buildings when summer ends. It will be interesting to see how teleworking and mobile business will play into scenarios when employees, co-workers or classmates are told they may not congregate together because of health risks.

Those schools and businesses that use video conferencing know that it will help them maintain the face-to-face connection that allows for better relationships, team building and handling of sensitive conversations.

Video can be essential in a pandemic situation. Is your organization planning for the possibility of a resurgence of H1N1?

No time like now for distance learning

July 21, 2009 at 10:56 am PST

The economy continues to be tough -- unemployment is higher than it’s been since the early 1980s and all levels of services, particularly at the state level, are being threatened. While agencies at all levels are feeling the pinch, services are expected to continue to be provided and employees still want to learn and grow on the job. In addition, agencies are also looking for ways to reduce their carbon footprints.

Video conferencing could be a way to work toward both goals concurrently. Using the right technology, agencies can use video to create off-site training opportunities to expedite professional development without requiring employees to travel across a city, state or the country. Video can also be used to record, archive and podcast meetings, presentations and projects, allowing employees with schedule conflicts or who are ill or on vacation to access the information on demand.

A great example is the use of video in Kansas’s Kan-ed network, which serves schools, higher education institutions and libraries across the state. Using the TANDBERG Codian Multipoint Control Unit (MCU), Kan-ed now offers one integrated network for video, teaching, training, meetings and data sharing, as well as access to the commercial Internet -- all with one router and one network connection. The network also makes it easier for K-12 administrators and teachers, specifically, to connect to state agencies and take advantage of various staff development opportunities that would otherwise have necessitated considerable expenditure of time and travel.

In addition, video can provide collaboration opportunities for agency workers who need to interact with colleagues across town or across the globe. That interaction can include everything from trouble-shooting problems with co-workers on site, to brainstorming sessions in high-definition, real-time environments.

Video can help your agency satisfy training requirements, keep employees connected with each other and reduce its carbon footprint. All while helping staff learn valuable skills in an uncertain economy.

What is your agency doing with video right now?

Video Conferencing Brings Fragmented Families Closer

Video conferencing brings families together

Video conferencing brings families together

Video conferencing has helped many families of divorce cope with the struggles of staying connected while living apart. A recent article in the Huffington Post details how Utah resident Michael Gough worried that his ex-wife’s relocation to Wisconsin would hinder his parental involvement. He sought to have the right to video conference with his daughter and as a result Utah was the first state to pass legislation for virtual visitation in 2004. Since then, Wisconsin, Florida, Texas and North Carolina have all passed similar legislation.

“With video conferencing, I was able to read bedtime stories, help her with her homework and even watch her open up a present,” said Gough.

How has video conferencing brought you closer to family and friends?