The workplace as we know it is changing and the traditional office-bound 9-5 work day is no longer the norm. Every week, up to 70 percent of employees work at least one day a week somewhere other than their office. And, with Millennials now reaching management positions and Gen Z hitting the workforce, this is a trend that is here to stay.
As a result, businesses are changing their operations to attract and retain the best new talent, whose expectations prioritize flexibility and the ability to strike a work/ life balance. Enterprises of all sizes are turning to a growing number of mobility and collaboration solutions to empower their employees to work from anywhere, from any device – a move that is driving the consistent growth that videoconferencing provider Zoom has experienced. And with the arrival of warmer weather, that means that we can expect a significant number of our colleagues to be working while they enjoy their coffee at a local café or even from their own gardens.
In fact, even those of us who rarely work remotely have come to rely on this level of mobility as it allows us to adapt our workday, for example by avoiding peak traffic by starting a call at home and continuing it as we drive or take a walk. But this new flexibility also brings new challenges.
Unfortunately, there are common issues that blight almost every conference bridge or video call:
• Bad connections
• Lack of quality audio
• Participants dropping in and out
• Delays with viewing a shared screen
• Glitching, buffering, pixilation
• Long time to re-connect to lost session
There's even evidence that poor audio can have a negative effect on mental health. Our own research shows that the majority (58 percent) of smartphone users consider the most frustrating issue by far when it comes to mobile connectivity is with inconsistent connections - far outranking their irritation with slow internet speeds (18 percent).
These bad mobile experiences are frustrating for individuals (particularly when a seemingly never-ending call taken while on vacation is what stands between us and the next dip in the pool) and has significant cost implications for businesses. When you consider how much time valuable workers spend tied up on calls that are either ineffective due to poor audio quality or that take longer than they should due to bad connectivity, the productivity losses are potentially huge. And with tens of millions of meetings taking place daily in the US alone, the cost to the economy is in the billions.
And who gets blamed for the poor user experience? Generally, it’s the enterprise communications and collaboration providers– as their apps are where users experience the problems, especially when on the go.
There is a simple remedy for these vacation connectivity blues. Our True Gapless Handover technology and Link Aggregation solution help ensure reliable network connections regardless of where users are or how fast they are moving.
True Gapless Handover intelligently transitions customers between wireless networks to ensure uninterrupted connections. Meanwhile, the Link Aggregation capability boosts the reliability of any available network by combining its throughput with that of other available networks, for example boosting the reliability of Wi-fi by supplementing it with cellular.
This approach allows users to enjoy a seamless experience even for high bandwidth, low latency connections, such as voice over data or real-time collaboration tools. So, if users are joining a video call from a local coffee shop or participating in augmented reality (AR) training from an office break room, the experience will be as reliable as if they were connected to the office Ethernet.
Applications with our embedded Link Aggregation / True Gapless Handover SDK offer peace of mind to enterprises as they can ensure that their employees remain productive by eliminating dropped or patchy connections. This represents an attractive differentiator for enterprise app developers. They additionally can offer businesses the option of minimizing their network management costs by maximizing the traffic that is sent over Wi-Fi connections for their apps, by simply embedding our features via an SDK. And as for employees, nobody will know that they’re working by the pool (but we can’t help it if the excellent video quality gives the game away).
To find out more about how our solutions ensure that app performance is always on point, guaranteeing that remote employees and those working al fresco can stay productive, stay tuned for our next post….In the meantime, this handy meeting cost calculator from Harvard Business Review can help you calculate how much poor connectivity might be costing you.