Tag Archives: Communication Tools

Innovative Technologies for Investor Relations

The utilisation of innovative technologies in Investor Relations gains more and more weight. The global finance crisis led to uncertainties across financial markets. The reactions on incoming news and information from Investor Relation departments impacted the market heavily.

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Jan Johansson (President & CEO of SCA) during an annual general meeting (Photo: SCA)

That is why it is now an important task for the management of such companies and their Investor Relations departments to re-gain trust. The target is to enable a target-driven direct communication to investors, analysts and other stakeholders without giving a wrong impression or deliver data that would lead to wrong assumptions. For this communication to happen, more and more organisations utilise innovative technologies. Such technologies are also known as “Unified Communications” tools and aid Investor Relations significantly with the efficient communication with a usually large number of recipients. On top of that many investors and analysts are scattered across the globe and therefore subject to time zone related difficulties.

Important technologies within the Unified Communication tool-set utilised in Investor Relations are:

Video Conference Services

Video conferencing services allow organisations to rapidly and easily get in contact with one or many investors or analysts. This way of communicating is becoming more and more attractive as the prices for video conference system deployments have significantly going down recently – becoming a much more affordable solution. Beyond the normal functionality of communicating with audio and video dimensions, high-end video conferencing technologies also allow sharing screens or other digital content into the video conference, such as Microsoft PowerPoint presentations or business plans in form of a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet for instance. Now one is able to present such files live without sending the data per mail prior to a meeting., which cuts a lot of issues like “having an out-dated file” at hand during the conference. Video conferencing not only is a great way of delivering high quality communication, but also can save a lot of costs and increases productivity of teams. While Investor Relations officials would be required to take a plane to fly to an appointment, now the very same person can save time and costs by arranging a video conference and getting the message across to many even on the same day.

Live Video Streaming via IP

Another way of delivering information from important events is the live video stream via internet or intranet. Like this an organisation can easily broadcast from an annual general meeting (AGM) and deliver a video feed in HD not only to on-site audience but also to remote investors and analysts. The video stream could be watched from Notebook, PC, Mac, Tablet or even from Smartphones. With Digital Signage the event could be embedded into information displays that could be deployed in meeting rooms or public areas. The possibility of facilitating IP Video Streaming do not always require an own infrastructure and staff for events that happen only once per year. They can be also booked as a service and the streaming solution will be provided by specialists at scalable costs. If an organisation however runs events at a high frequency or requires video transmission for other reasons, they can invest in own infrastructure and managed services to look after their infrastructure. This would enable an organisation to flexibly utilise video streaming solutions and would save costs on long-term outlook.

Video-on-Demand Platforms

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Analyst focused on watching an annual general meeting (Photo: QSC AG)

A Video-on-Demand solution serves archiving purposes and enables the playback of any previously recorded videos, video conferences or events in case someone could not attend the live video stream. You could for example provide access to shareholders, who would usually not be able to see the live broadcast due to being in another time zone. This kind of solutions is also known as “Corporate YouTube” using the role of YouTube as “mother” of all Video-on-Demand platforms. Also for Video-on-Demand solutions organisations can choose between solutions managed and hosted for them or deploy them in their own infrastructure and have it supported by managed services to ensure a maximum availability to the users.

Summary

In summary we can see that innovative technologies such as Unified Communication tools are utilised in Investor Relations and being a great value-add to the communication and delivery of information towards stakeholders of internal and external nature. A business case is relatively quick assembled, since the technologies increase quality in communication and also steadily decrease costs that would normally be spent on travel and hotels. Also the technologies can greatly increase productivity of teams even if they are not in the same place.

Telepresence Advantages and Updates

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Photo: Wikipedia

Within the fast paced online world it’s hard establishing an intimate human connection with clients, employees, patients and customers. Businesses need the best communication tools whether maintaining fast and efficient phone lines to reach customers or working with an employee over video conference.

Countless companies, schools, and hospitals are dedicated to providing telepresence. You need a strong, capable, and expansive business class internet provider to handle the telepresence abilities. Investing in telepresence tools improves your company’s image and flexibility in the work environment.

Network Security

Discovering the most reliable corporate VoIP can prove essential for companies’ telepresence. The right internet service offers the correct data solutions to handle your business’ phone and internet needs all over one secured network. Plus, you’re telepresence will run smoothly whether in a video conference business meeting or if a boss pops in for updates on the workload. Finding a business class internet provider who customizes their service to your business at affordable rates will assist communication substantially.

Network security is important when it comes to increasing your business’ telepresence. Employees should be able to connect to a secured and private network where pertinent and confidential information is easily shared. When the network experiences lapses in security, it threatens your company’s communication skills and flexibility. The right corporate VoIP for a company establishes a strong foundation for communication and network security.

Video Conferencing

Twenty years ago who would have thought that business transactions, meetings, or even interviews could be arranged and handled over video conference on computers. The communication options continue to astound me as an employee and professional.

Why waste the time and money to travel to a job interview? Video conference saves money on both ends. But in order to conduct interviews, companies need strong network connections. Corporate VoIP is necessary for many companies to reach employees or clients over video conference. Video over IP connects two groups instantly over a clear video feed that’s more human and intimate than a phone call and it saves the time of an in person interview. If the network connection isn’t great, then that will reflect badly on the employer. A company’s inability for such communication shows that they’re behind the learning curve of technology and communication.

The best companies are willing to communicate via video conference. My video conference experiences that include countless staff meetings, interviews, and orientations have all been pleasant and reflective of my employers’ flexibility and ability to communicate.

Telepresence Robots

The telepresence field is taken to greater heights through the use of telepresence robots. These robots can be implemented for employees who work from home and still need to have an office presence. Companies use these robots to communicate with and monitor employees while out of the office, but now they are used at greater lengths in different fields.

Doctors utilize telepresence robots to interact with countless patients in hospitals or anywhere. It allows for quick communication and consultation. It improves a doctor’s ability to see more patients.

Educational systems provide funding for these robots for students who can’t be physically present in schools due to ongoing medical issues. The extent of telepresence technology is astounding.

All New Viber: Cross-Platform Monster for Consumers

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Viber Desktop with all new features (Image by Viber Media Inc.)

Some of you might know Viber already and that they are  now also providing a solution for Windows and Mac based workstations. For everyone else here is a quick introduction to Viber:

What is Viber?

Viber is a cross-platform VoIP solution for consumers developed by Viber Media Inc. It was first introduced to iOS in December 2010. Since then they have been increasing support for other smartphone platforms such as Android, Windows Phone, BlackBerry, Nokia Symbian and Samsung Bada. Their app does not cost anything but the initial registration requires a SMS to be send for validating your phone number.

What’s new?

On May 7, 2013 Viber released software clients for Windows and Mac. So you are able to install the application on your computer or notebook and register with your phone number to synchronise contacts. When you are logged in with both your smartphone and a desktop client at the same time you can move any active call to the other device.

Features

So what value does it add to your unified communications environment? Here are some of the new (and some old) features that might come in handy:

Positioning

The Viber solution is clearly positioned in the consumer market and gained wide popularity among users in that category. So far I have not come across enterprises utilising Viber as part of their unified communications strategy. If you are using Viber for professional purposes please feel invited to share your experiences in the comment section below.

Competition

As the Facebook Chat app is currently tested for possible VoIP features and beta tested, Viber seeks to increase their solution portfolio to maintain market share and this release seems to be the result of that. Other in-direct competitors of consumer-based unified communication tools are solutions such as WhatsApp for instant messaging and Skype for video conferencing.

Possible Business Usage

If you and your social network connections list their smartphone number along with the social profile, and install the apps of such on their smartphone they will see each other on Viber. Being completely synchronised  they will be able to communicate via VoIP, video conference or instant message beyond their enterprises unified communications abilities. This should serve for non-critical communication only though, as consumer solutions might not be sufficient to match your organisations IT security policies.


The Viber Desktop Introduction Video

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NEqS5W-KfRw]