Technology has changed how and where we work. A free conference call service can help facilitate your company communications by connecting people from anywhere, making it easier for teams to stay productive regardless of the location of each person. A recent study found that since 2005, those who regularly work at home have increased by roughly 173 per cent. And given today’s unique world of social distancing demands, companies are facing an unprecedented spike in employees working remotely.
It’s unlikely this trend of remote workers will slow down. A LinkedIn study found that 82 per cent of workers want to work from home at least one day per week, while 57 per cent want to work from home three or more days per week. Running a business is difficult, and the margin for error is thin.
The rise of remote working has increased the need to communicate quickly and easily with co-workers, making it crucial to find the right productivity tools. Email, instant messaging and free video conferencing, all have their uses in the business world, and conference calls are often the primary means of company communication for dispersed teams.
Evaluate your requirements
It’s probably hard to believe that anything is free in this day and age, yet there are indeed free conference call services. It’s important to note that a free conference call service is beneficial to all sized companies, from startups and small businesses to medium-sized businesses (SMBs) and even enterprises level corporations.
Each free conference call service offers different features and capabilities, and finding the right one can take a little time. Start by assessing the specific needs of your business. Productivity software that enables you to integrate with other tools such as free video conferencing or even free screen sharing can make your work easier and your meetings more productive. Having a connected and integrated productivity tool is important because working with disconnected tools can be costly due to scattered data, poor time management and high operating costs.
Overall, free conference calls can save your business time, effort and even money. This real-time communication tool helps keep your teams up to speed with both internal and external communications. They’re especially helpful when urgent matters arise, allowing you to set up quickly and easily and connect with anyone, anywhere, anytime. With no monthly fees and a reduction in travel costs, startups and small businesses can keep money where they need it most – in working capital.
All businesses have financial concerns. For startups and SMB, it’s about ensuring modest spending. For the enterprise size corporation, it’s rogue spending.
Rogue spending can account for up to 80 per cent of expenditures in some organisations. A free conference call service can offer an enterprise the ability to curb rogue expenses – with the added benefit of allowing multiple teams to test functionality and deployment across the organisation without the hassle of complicated contracts or monthly fees.
Myths about free conference calls
1. Free conference calls have poor quality
Foremost, quality is imperative. Contrary to popular belief, quality isn’t typically an issue with free conference calling services. More often than not, these services can be just as good as their paid counterparts, but problems can arise. Complications such as low volume, hiss, broken speech and fading are commonly due to a poor internet connection – not the service.
Being prepared can help ensure that you have the best quality possible for your call. Here are some helpful tips.
- Ensure that you’re in a quiet space
- Test your internet connection before your call to establish that it’s stable
- Use a high-quality webcam and microphone
- Keep your microphone away from other electronic devices to help alleviate unwanted noise or sound issues
2. Enterprises shouldn’t use free conference calls
Many free conference calling services are enterprise-grade and offer HD audio quality as well as global dial-in phone numbers.
In 2018, nearly half of all enterprises were hacked, so it’s no surprise that security is a top concern. Security controls can mean the difference between your conversation staying private or compromising your company’s data. Thus, free conference calling services have these concerns in mind.
Most people don’t realise that many of the free conference calling services meet or even exceed industry level security standards. Depending on your company’s needs, whether it’s encryption, the ability to restrict attendees or even multifactor authentication, security can often be overlooked, but not by free conference calling services.
As we’ve seen, a free conference calling service doesn’t mean you have to compromise the things that are important to making a conferencing calling tool successful for your company. Whatever service you choose, you’ll want to ensure that they offer quality and security.
Most importantly, you’ll want to know if it’s capable of scaling with the growth of your business. As your business develops, the productivity tools you’ll need are likely to change. When considering switching from a free conference call service to a paid service, visit our article titled When to switch from conference call services.