The Cost of Poor Meetings

Posted in: Corporate , Government , Managed Services , UC&C

By Jim Ferlino on May 04, 2021

You’d be hard-pressed to find someone who hasn’t experienced difficulties connecting to their meeting or struggled to stay engaged—or even awake—through a two-hour Teams, Zoom or WebEx call.

Meeting room technology is intended to unify, or in other words, make collaboration easier and employees more productive. Rooms of all sizes—from huddle spaces to executive boardrooms—should ideally be set up with unified communication and collaboration technology solutions so that prepared, well-meaning and attentive individuals don’t have to suffer through bad conference calls—either remotely or in person.

Yet, it’s surprising how many meetings devolve into spotty connections, disturbances and general technology failures. So, what exactly is the average cost of poor meetings? Let’s break it down:

The Commonalities

  • The average meeting in a conference room has 6 participants, including remote attendees.
  • The average meeting time is one hour.
  • The average conference room is used approximately 25 hours per week, or 1,250 hours per year.
  • For most SMBs, the average loaded cost per employee in meetings is about $60 per hour, which is conservatively low.

Meeting Deficiencies

  • The average amount of lost time due to audiovisual complexities, connection difficulties or other technical issues is approximately 5 minutes per meeting, or 1/12 hour.
  • On average, 67% of employees say that productivity is lost—an estimated 15% total loss per meeting—due to poor audio, inability to properly see content/speakers and/or a poor overall meeting experience.

Cost of Inefficiency

Vital to productive office environments, whether fully remote or hybrid, are meeting spaces integrated with modern collaboration capabilities and high-quality video conferencing to enhance and simplify the experience for all employees and participants.

The fact of the matter is that business users often run into the contrary, which has a costly impact. When talking to the scale of per conference room meeting per year, the prices that companies pay are, well, not quite economical:

Total man hours per conference room per year:

(6 people per meeting) x (1,250 hours per year) = 7,500 conferencing hours

Total inefficient time per year caused by audiovisual and technical problems:

(7,500 conferencing hours) x (5 minutes, or 1/12 lost time per hour) = 625 working hours

Total inefficiency cost for one conference room:

(625 working hours) x ($60/hour) = $37,500.00

Estimated cost of productivity lost per year caused by poor audio and ineffective content sharing:

(7,500 conferencing hours) x ($60/hour) x (~.15, or an estimated 15% productivity loss due to bad experiences) = $67,500.00

Eliminate Bad Meetings with a Unified Approach

It goes beyond obsolescence; without the proper communication platforms and meeting collaboration tools, businesses will continue to suffer from a lack of productivity and audiovisual complications. Entering a new hybrid work environment with the same technology infrastructure that contributes to derailed meetings and wasted time will not only prove to be counterproductive, but also costly.

Keep in mind, the aforementioned analysis doesn’t reflect any potential cost savings and ROI from a better video conferencing and collaboration experience due to more intelligible audio (understanding the message), clearer content (more efficient delivery of message, purpose and takeaways), and higher-quality video (enhanced experience with better first impressions, facial expressions and body language).

Meetings have evolved, but they are still undoubtedly the most expensive communication forms among employees in the workplace. Working with a technology integrator that provides the most practical and streamlined solution for your business—along with a 24/7 support team—will position you to do business efficiently in today’s world. Whether you call it a refresh or a digital transformation, it’s time to do it right as we move into the next generation of work.

Vistacom’s business communication experts are on the pulse of designing cost-effective hybrid meeting solutions for companies of all sizes. Reach out to discuss how to improve your unique workplace meeting arrangements.

*Data sourced from ZDNet, Attentiv, The Muse, Atlassian and Internal Surveys

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