A third of meetings use mobile

International report shows the increasing impact of technology in business meetings

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'There has been a monumental shift in the way meetings are being conducted'

 

A third of all meetings now include a participant on a mobile device, according to Blue Jean Network’s bi-annual State of the Modern Meeting Report.

Cloud-based video conferencing has grown explosively, Blue Jeans said, with usage of its own service up nearly 400% in the last year.

Compiled using data from more than 1 million Blue Jeans customers in 177 countries and a survey of 391 business decision makers, the report has benchmarked trends in collaboration and demonstrated how technology is reshaping meetings throughout the world.

>See also: Mobile collaboration in 2014: 4 big predictions

There is intriguing insight into the ways different regions and groups of people collaborate and attend meetings. The UK for example meets for longer hours than the rest of the EU, starting meetings as early as 7am each day and only winding up at 9pm.

Its European counterparts rarely meet before 8am or after 6pm. Despite their hardworking nature, it appears meetings aren’t always the first priority for Brits. Major sporting events generally cause a significant drop in UK meeting productivity.

During Wimbledon for example, there was a 15% drop in weekday meetings across the country – a trend likely to be replicated during the Football World Cup later this year.

Within the UK, Scots hold longer meetings, averaging 46 minutes compared with 38 minutes in the South and 36 minutes in the North of England. The report also shows that certain cities are more connected than others.

While London unsurprisingly tops the leader board, Cambridge, Glasgow and Northampton make up the rest of the big four – ousting other heavy weights such as Manchester and Liverpool.  London also takes the top ranking in Europe according to the report, followed by Munich, Paris, Dublin, Madrid, and Berlin.

The report shows the majority (59%) of all meetings start late, with CEOs, CTOs and founders perhaps surprisingly the most likely to join a meeting after everyone else. Despite their habitual lateness, high-level executives, along with product managers and salespeople, average the most meetings per week.

Executive and administrative assistants and those in the legal department participate in the longest meetings. Women are the Queens of the modern meeting, attending 14% more meetings than men (up from 11% six months ago) and are 12% more likely to attend meetings on weekends than their male counterparts.

>See also: Most UK businesses still not providing the right collaboration tools - report

Nearly three quarters (71%) of people believe they lost a deal due to the lack of face-to-face interaction and 6% admitted to falling asleep during an audio-only meeting.

39% of video-centric meetings also have at least one audio-only participant, up from 35% in June, while 30% of video-centric meetings include screen/content sharing for presentations, documents, or video-clips, up from 26% in June.

Desktop and laptop users are increasingly skipping proprietary solutions like Skype for the ease and ubiquity of the web browser thanks to technology advancements like WebRTC.  Today, 90% of Blue Jeans desktop/laptop participants use a browser, the company revealed.

“There has been a monumental shift in the way meetings are being conducted,” said Stu Aaron, CCO at Blue Jeans Network. “If an in-person meeting is not an option, more than half of business professionals prefer a video meeting over an audio-only meeting.

“This new way to collaborate means that bad weather, budget cuts, holidays and a geographically scattered team are no longer threats to business productivity as you can easily conduct face-to-face meetings with nearly any device – from any location.”