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How COVID-19 Caused The Rise Of Mainstream Video Conferencing Acceptance

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The COVID-19 pandemic engulfed the entire planet and kept everyone inside their houses in 2020. Since social distancing and isolation are the new safety norms, many activities became a part of everyone’s daily routines to experience free life within such circumstances. Most actions, such as conducting physical meetings without the fear of contracting the virus have become a thing of the past. 

Businesses have had to adopt different work environments to ensure smooth intra-organisation communication. Quality video conferencing equipment and tools have become the need of the hour for every business. 

Below, we look at how the COVID-19 pandemic has significantly changed business workflows and helped in the rise of video conferencing tools. 

Mandatory Social Distancing - How do Businesses Survive?

When the pandemic first caused social distancing to become mandated for health management, most businesses did not know how to continue working. The traditional business way of working for a fixed time, in a physical office space was no longer possible. Therefore, the immediate need for change arose. 

Most businesses and other establishments took a while to understand how entire organisations could work digitally. However, with due time and hard work, work from home became the new norm which we we happy to be able to help with across the board from video conferencing solutions to COVID-secure technologies.

With work from home, arose methods such as video conferencing that became the building block of remote collaboration. It was only through benefit of video conferencing that businesses began to see the light at the end of the tunnel and that they could still operate without everyone in the office. 

How Has The Video Conferencing Industry Changed Due To COVID-19?

It would be an understatement to say that coronavirus has impacted every industry. Almost every market has been defined by uncertainty and financial loss. But, what about the video conferencing industry? 

The switch to a work from home model led to increased demands of quality video conferencing tools by almost every business. As businesses looked to sustain professional remote working for their associates, the growth in the video conferencing industry was quite significant. The industry is expected to grow by 9.8 percent annually. In fact, by 2026, the global value of the video conferencing market is expected to reach USD 6.37 billion..... yup, with a 'b'. 

The pandemic certainly increased stock prices of all the leading digital companies and now, companies across the UK are looking to offer better video and audio experiences to continue their survival in an uncertain world. Despite regular complaints of disrupted meetings and issues related to privacy, the industry is expected to boom. In fact, the estimated use of these tools and services has increased by 800 percent in almost four years. 

The rise of video conferencing tools started long before the COVID-19 pandemic. However, it certainly increased the demand of these tools and helped the video conferencing market to grow in multiple ways.   

Video Conferencing - The Saviour

The COVID-19 pandemic almost derailed a lot of bricks and mortar organisations. Due to the pandemic, a large swathe of high street prominent names were completely off-track, while many new ones saw rapid growth. While some business sectors are still grappling, others witnessed a surge in demand for their services. 

The video conferencing industry is one such industry that benefited from this global crisis. Video conferencing has been the backbone of the brave new world that has come into existence due to the ongoing pandemic.

It is only due to video conferencing that millions of people did not lose their jobs. They have been able to function almost the same as before but from home instead of the office. 

With video conferencing, businesses introduced a new way of functioning - work from home. It is only due to video conferencing facilities that people were able to remotely collaborate and communicate with clients and colleagues alike. 

There has been no other industry to date that has seen such a massive a boom as the video conferencing industry has seen after COVID-19 first emerged.  

Online Existence of Organisations

The traditional physical structure of organisations failed in 2020. The possibility of employees working together in different departments within one building was not possible anymore. Hence, businesses had to find new ways of surviving. 

The only way of managing any business on a local or global level and enabling all employees to effectively communicate with one another was by shifting a version of the business that could operate from offline to online. As a result, almost all organisations in the world now exist on the Internet, even big names like Lindt who never previously offered online shopping had to get on board along with, millions of people working from home.

Many applications and software such as Microsoft Teams, Google Meet, and Zoom came to light. As an increasing number of companies began to shift their core structures to the Internet, these softwares saw massive growth in their users. 

The only reason why all these software gained prominence while other communication applications such as WhatsApp did not is due to their support for intra-organisation communication.

Below are a few things that came into existence only because of video conferencing and businesses' need to adapt to the new normal. 

Work from Home

When organisations began shutting down, people were worried about losing their jobs. If businesses do not function, what would they need employees for? How would business transactions take place? Working from home saved many jobs and businesses. As businesses shifted to a remote mode, work from home became a whole new working segment. 

Online Recruitment

As companies got the hang of how to function under the pressure of remote working, it was necessary to recruit new people. Facilities like walk-in-interviews and campus recruitments were no longer possible. Therefore, companies had to adapt to allow remote recruitment. 

Remote Collaborations

Video conferencing made it possible for people within and outside a company to communicate with one another. As a result, people are able to collaborate with one another on tasks, projects, and other business ventures. 

With the help of remote collaborations, many new companies have been able to find their way into the mainstream market. Many innovative content creators and coders have been able to seek unexpected projects through video conferencing. 

Making collaborative efforts has become more manageable now. All that someone has to do is figure out who they want to collaborate with, set a mutually comfortable time and date, and get on a video conference to discuss new projects. 

Free Services Played An Important Role

As the pandemic required people to work from home, it would have been challenging to bring a working method revolution had all services been paid. Most companies that are the prime market players offer their services for free or at a minimal cost. 

Since people do not have to incur extra expenditure to work freely, the business grew. The pandemic made most video conferencing companies realise that if they have an increased number of users, they do not have to charge them too much. This is because many low-paying users are much better than fewer high-paying users. 

Companies such as Zoom offer free video calls for their users. Due to the rapid demand for the company's services, they are able to generate more revenue now with free services than they would have with paid services. 

The pandemic also led the world into an economic crisis. The availability of free services encouraged businesses to shift to video conferencing and maintain their work routines. 

Had the virus not spread globally, many companies would never have come into the mainstream light. It is because people are working from home and require conferencing options that these companies are able to grow. 

Comfortable And Safe Working Experience

As mentioned above, the only way to beat COVID-19 is by maintaining social distance. Keeping distance does not only help people stay safe but also helps break the chain of disease communication. 

Since video conferencing has become a great option for the new ways of working, people have begun to prefer this style of work over the traditional working style. 

In fact, some professions such as content creation, coding, creative services, among others, do not necessarily require people to leave their homes for work. This is only possible if people are able to communicate with clients, employers, and employees through video conferencing. 

Most companies prefer that their employees stay safe from COVID-19. If they are also able to produce quality work from the comfort of their home then that is a bonus. This is another reason why video conferencing and remote collaboration tools have gained massive popularity amidst the pandemic. 

New Career Paths And Freelancing

The ease of video conferencing has also opened up many career avenues for people as they look for a creative outlet at home. 

Content creation, for example, is a professional field that had been gaining prominence for about a decade. However, after the spread of the novel coronavirus, people at home have time to create and consume more content. As a result, many new videos and audio streaming platforms have been growing. 

The primary way for creative content to generate between individuals is through online communication. Freelancing, too, has become more comfortable as almost all organisations have switched to work from home mode. 

The Emergence Of New And Obscure Names

Who in 2019 would have known that names such as Zoom, Hello Backgrounds, and others would become part of daily life? Nobody. However, since work from home has become the only way for proper business functioning, Zoom has witnessed massive user growth globally. 

Zoom is not only adopted by many businesses but also educational institutions and domestic users. There has been no other company that can match the success story of this particular video communications company. Not only has this app helped friends and families stay in touch with each other, but it has also helped businesses get back on their feet. 

Until last year, Microsoft owned video conferencing application Skype was all the rage. However, after the pandemic hit, Skype has almost disappeared from existence. This is because Zoom offers better user-friendliness than other applications. 

It also allows businesses to create a separate conference room. In fact, many companies now exist entirely over Zoom, without the fear of external interference.

Key Video Conferencing And Collaborative Companies 

Amidst the pandemic, there are a few companies that have been able to make the most out of the situation. While most of these companies are video communication companies, some of them are team collaborative companies or software applications. 

  • 8x8, Inc.
  • Cisco Systems, Inc. 
  • Google LLC
  • Lifesize, Inc.
  • LogMeIn, Inc
  • Microsoft Corp.
  • RingCentral, Inc.
  • StarLeaf Ltd.
  • Zoho Corp. Pvt. Ltd.
  • Zoom Video Communications, Inc.

All of these companies are envisaging the ongoing pandemic as an unfortunate tool to maximise their growth. By doing so, they are not only helping themselves but are helping millions of people to go about their business smoothly. 

These major players have not only generated employment within their own organisation but have also helped other companies recruit with ease. 

The current COVID-19 pandemic had brought the world to a stand-still until video conferencing and remote working began to emerge. 

With the emergence of such free and convenient options, an increasing number of businesses are able to thrive. The pandemic changed the face of the work environment of most companies but the battled through and are now functioning online and remotely.