Calculating the ROI of enterprise video conferencing equipment is not just about reduced employee travel costs; there is more to the story. Often, video conferencing benefits outweigh equipment costs because of productivity benefits. Travel costs should be included in the ROI assessment, but there are other things to take into account as well. Let’s look at some of these ideas:
Less Waiting Around
When employees have to sit in traffic for an hour to get to work, attend a meeting or training event, or have to spend time waiting for meetings to start, time is lost, never to be regained. Using video conferencing to replace some in-person meetings and training can help workers regain hours each week, allowing them to reuse the time for important deadlines or other projects. Cost savings can be calculated by estimating average waiting time per employee per day and multiplying it by the average hourly salary.
When efficiency is increased, workers have more time to complete other projects, to take time for themselves and their families, and to reduce stress. About 40 percent of workers say that they are not happy with their work/life balance, and video conferencing can help improve that feeling by giving them more time in the week. Workers can give management an idea of what their regained time is worth to them in order to determine ROI in this area.
Video conferencing allows people to get to know each other better than just talking on the phone or sending emails back and forth. By understanding other people’s body language and gestures, it is easier to understand where someone is coming from, allowing for fewer misunderstandings and better collaboration. The ability to build relationships can make or break a business, and value-added resellers (VARs) can help organizations understand the value of being able to do this through video conferencing.
With global security becoming more of an issue every day, it is important for businesses to have a fallback to travel in order to keep business moving along. Video conferencing can be the solution in these uncertain times, allowing employees to continue on with face-to-face business without the risk of travel. VARs can help companies understand the monetary value of being able to meet when travel is impossible and the value of their employees so that they can add this value into their ROI assessment.
Reduced Carbon Footprint
Transportation is responsible for 28 percent of global greenhouse emissions. This includes travel by cars, buses, airplanes, and trains. Driving a car in congested traffic increases carbon emission outputs. Companies can help save the environment by reducing travel, whether for commuting, business meetings, training, or conferences, and using video conferencing instead. Companies can measure their carbon footprint by using tools like the University of California, Berkeley’s CoolClimate Network calculator and then determine how much carbon offset they can achieve by using video conferencing instead of travel with a tool like PledgeVideo.Org's calculator.
Not all business travel can be eliminated with video conferencing, but organizations can definitely reduce a considerable amount of domestic and international travel by using these tools. VARs have access to ROI tools for business travel and can help clients understand the cost benefits of reducing the number of trips an employee takes per year.
When determining the ROI of enterprise video conferencing solutions, VARs should help customers uncover all of the ways they can save money. It’s no longer just the reduction in travel that sells these products, and organizations need to look at the bigger picture and the future of travel. Most major video conferencing solution providers have built ROI tools for VARs to use, mainly to justify the equipment expense against reduced travel. These tools should most assuredly be used, but in addition to the other ways to show video conferencing ROI.
What tools does your company use to show video conferencing ROI? Please comment below.