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5 ways to use technology to give your next meeting a boost

Did you know that UK office workers waste at least 21 days a year due to incompetent technology?

Don’t let your meetings or training events get derailed by technology issues, we’ve put together 5 ways in which you can use technology to streamline your events. 

 

Recruit a virtual scheduling assistant

Such a simple idea that can make organising a meeting so much easier. A good scheduling assistant – built into many common email providers such as Outlook – will allow you to view all of the key attendees’ diaries to ensure you choose a date and time that works for everybody. If you’re inviting external delegates, web-based tools such as Doodle can help pinpoint a date that works for everybody by allowing them to vote on suitable options.  

Additionally, distributing a digital invite to your attendees will assist in managing RSVPs and follow up any major stakeholders that might have forgotten to RSVP. Take this opportunity to share the meeting agenda in advance so that all of your delegates know what is expected of them when the big day comes around.

 

Guide the way with a virtual pin

Get your meeting off on the right foot by including a pin location in your email invite. Not quite sure what that means? Pins are typically used with desktop and smartphone applications such as Google Maps and Apple Maps (available for free on most smartphones), and they’re an easy way of sharing the location of your meeting with other people in advance.

Including a pin location in your meeting invite means your delegates can load up the meeting location on their phone and use their favourite journey planner app to plan their route to the event. This vastly decreases the chances of your delegates getting lost, with the added benefit of getting your delegates to arrive right on time. 

 

Work together with Cloud tools

Advances in Cloud-based collaboration tools means no more are you and your delegates at the mercy of an Excel spreadsheet passed around several people for amends. Collaboration tools allow you to work together – be it in a text document, a spreadsheet or a presentation – in real-time, capturing all of your changes and letting you add comments to a working document. 

More and more companies are integrating Cloud-based collaboration tools into how they work with each other. Most tools such as Google Drive and Dropbox are free up to a limit, making them perfect to use in meetings and training sessions. They’re simple to set up and you can have your delegates working collaboratively on a document, jotting down ideas and amends, in minutes. 

 

Forget about brick and mortar

In a perfect world when you’ve invested the time to arrange an off-site meeting for your teams, you want all of the attendees to be physically present. But as companies offer more flexibility in how their teams work, quite often key stakeholders or freelancers are located elsewhere, be it in another city or another country entirely. Alternatively, you might want your CEO or a board member to make a guest appearance, without taking a chunk of time out of their day. 

Bridge the geographical gap with the help of video conferencing software. Video conferencing tools make it easier than ever to include everybody, by allowing delegates to dial in remotely on a video screen. Why video over a good old phone conference? Video conferencing allows your delegates to pick up on non-verbal cues and decrease the likelihood of your remote delegates being forgotten on the speakerphone. 

 

Allocate tasks on the fly

Unless you’re recording every moment of your meeting it can be easy to forget who will action what in the aftermath. We’ve talked a little in the past about conducting a meeting post-mortem but what if you could allocate tasks and key actions as they’re discussed?

Task management tools will allow you to assign important tasks that arise during the meeting straightaway and monitor outcomes post-meeting in a much more straightforward manner. Assign one of your delegates to be the task master that takes charge of logging and assigning actions in a task management tool such as Trello as projects and ideas are proposed. 

 

Looking for your next training and meetings venue? We know that developing your future involves a comfortable and stimulating environment just as much as it requires the latest tools and technology. 

Immerse yourself in our state-of-the-art facility with our virtual venue tour or contact the team directly on +44 (0)20 7069 4723 or centred@excel.london.