22 December 2017
UK businesses are losing billions of pounds on poor conference calls, according to LoopUp.
In a survey of 1,000 professionals in the UK and US who regularly participate in conference calls, the remote meetings specialist sought to understand business people’s attitudes towards conferencing and conferencing technology.
LoopUp has published the findings in its Enterprise Conferencing – User Behaviour and Impact report.
It reveals that workers waste an average of 15 minutes per conference call simply getting started or dealing with distractions throughout the call.
LoopUp says this costs businesses in the UK and US more than £26 billion every year. It adds that this has increased by 46 per cent since 2015 when it was £14 billion.
According to the study, dial-in conferencing remains the primary way business people participate in conference calls, regardless of whether they have access to web or video conferencing tools.
Sixty one per cent (68 per cent in larger companies) report that that they still typically dial in in to their conference calls.
The survey results confirm that video conferencing has not yet reached mainstream adoption with only half of respondents believing it is actually useful for day-to-day conference calls. Furthermore, only 12 per cent say they feel as comfortable on video calls as they do on audio calls.
LoopUp co-CEO Steve Flavell reckons dial-in conferencing offers a “sub-par” user experience which impacts productivity and costs businesses money.
He says: “It’s not surprising that the majority of business people still default to dial-in to join their conference calls. While there is an abundance of capable software products for conferencing, most business people neither have the time nor inclination to learn how to use them, and they certainly don’t want to learn by trial and error during their meetings.”
Flavell adds that dial-in conferencing can put sensitive information at risk and that conference calls present a “significant” security challenge to businesses.
As an example, LoopUp cites a report in The New York Times that said: “In 2012, the FBI admitted to hosting a conference call with Scotland Yard and other foreign police agencies regarding the joint investigation of a hacker group. They later found that the hackers themselves had been on the call. How did the eavesdroppers gain access to the call? Simply by using the dial-in details from an email they obtained.”
Seventy per cent of the respondents in LoopUp’s survey said it is normal to discuss confidential information on conference calls, while more than half said it’s also normal not to know who is on those calls.