​Reshaping workplace meetings for COVID-19

News / 16.07.20

Following weeks of employees’ working remotely in response to COVID-19, businesses are now facing a new challenge: how and when to return to the office safely. 

With ongoing uncertainty surrounding the coronavirus pandemic, no one knows precisely what returning to work will look like post COVID-19. Some companies may opt to remain fully remote, while others will return their entire staff to the office, with the vast majority of organisations expected to be somewhere in between. However, even with reduced numbers of co-workers sharing the same office space, business will need to reengineer their offices to comply with the current government recommendations, and to ensure the safety of their employees.

Having employees working from home while others return to the office brings its challenges and it’s essential to have the right tools in place for seamless communication and productivity. 

There is some great technology available that will enhance remote collaborative working, especially when it comes to video meetings. High-quality audio and video solutions makes it feel like your entire team is meeting together in the same room and lets you connect on a deeper level by being able to see and hear your remote team members and vice versa. Distributed teams will fail to be effective if they don’t meet face to face regularly. 

Often the most productive locations within the office, meeting rooms of all sizes need careful consideration regarding furniture layout and equipment placement. Businesses must create the new ‘normal’ meeting space which implements safe distancing, hygienic and easy to clean surfaces, and technology that enhances remote collaborative video meetings. 

Crystal clear audio is essential for remote collaboration. However many spaces have not been designed with social distancing in mind. ClearOne’s range of Beamforming Microphone Array (BMA CTH) with adaptive steering make it a great audio solution when you need to spread out to keep your distance. The professional in-ceiling microphone with beamforming and adaptive steering means there’s no need to adjust individual beams – ensuring impeccable coverage across the entire meeting space. The microphones also offer Acoustic Echo Cancellation and Noise Cancellation, delivering the clearest audio pick-up available on the market. 

The next step would be to introduce ClearOne’s COLLABORATE Versa bundles, which dramatically enhance the audio experience for any cloud-based video collaboration, such as Zoom, Skype, Google Hangout, Microsoft Teams, with no DSP mixer needed. This easy to use and cost-effective solution allows you to connect a laptop or room PC to the BMA CTH directly through the USB port on the USNN Expander to share room audio and reduce cross-contamination. 

Combine this with a wide-angled camera, such as the ClearOne UNITE 150 PTZ, and you’ll ensure everyone can spread out and still be seen, as well as heard. This ultra HD 4K video camera offers 120-degree field of view, as well as auto-focus, 12x digital zoom, connects via USB and can be easily located.

So that’s the office sorted out but what about those working remotely?  ClearOne has a great range of devices that mean that even remote participants can be seen and heard in the same HD 4K video and high-quality audio.  The UNITE 20 Pro Webcam can be mounted on a monitor or laptop and deliver full HD 4K images and 120-degree field of view, whilst also offering 3x digital zoom.  Very discrete, when partnered with the CHAT 50 desk microphone, users will be as visually and aurally clear as if they were in the room!  Thanks to the diminutive size of both products, they are also easily transportable so perfect for the employee who is working from home or on the move.

These are just two offerings from ClearOne, who have been industry leaders and innovators since the birth of video conferencing.  We think that their time is now, so if you haven’t checked out the range before, we highly recommend you do soon.  Afterall, video conferencing has never been more popular and has potentially changed the way that business is done around the world.  If your clients (as well as yourselves!) aren’t set up soon, they might miss out on future business opportunities.  

Click here to see ClearOne’s full range of video conferencing solutions to support your new way of working and ensure effective communication.