Reduce business costs now with these 5 technologies

Posted on October 12, 2009. Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , |

Today’s economy is forcing businesses of all sizes to examine every cost element and find ways to work at a lower cost. Not only is it imperative in 2009, but most businesses are starting their 2010 planning and need to identify cost savings to put into their budget. Fortunately technology continues to provide productivity enhancing tools. Here are a few recommended areas that should be examined to reduce your costs and improve performance:

  1. Hold online video conferences instead of travel. Computer based video conferencing services like Vonei Meeting offer unlimited use for less than $40/month. A regional bank VP told me they have twice a month meetings, where 7 of the 10 employees will drive 30 minutes to attend in person. The 1 hour of round trip lost productivity across 7 employees more than pays for the service with the first use. Additional savings include gasoline, parking, and reduced carbon pollution by eliminating driving. How much could you save by avoiding travel for meetings?

  2. Use open source software instead of licensing Microsoft software. Many people are switching to Google Apps for similar capabilities for no cost. If you are worried about Google’s insights into your data and communication you can consider OpenOffice and Zimbra. Both are open sourced and you can run them from your own computers and secure the data.

  3. Check for business class Internet service from your cable company. It is typically much less expensive than T-1 based Internet service from a telephone company. If you need 10Mb+ of Internet capacity consider getting an Ethernet connection from a competitive carrier. Ethernet is one of the least expensive transport mechanisms and is very reliable.

  4. For group communications use group chat or instant messaging services. Some video conferencing service providers like Vonei offer group and private chat embedded in their tool for no extra cost. Campfire is a stand alone group chat tool which works well for a small monthly cost. Google and Yahoo instant messaging services are free and are great for one-to-one communication without a phone call. Whether you use the group chat in Vonei or the one-to-one instant messaging services your communication stays within the group. For quick external chat Twitter is a useful tool. You just have to make sure everyone you want to communicate with has an account and regularly checks it.

  5. Use free video recording tools to improve your communication and advertising. An excellent video email service is available for free from Eyejot. You can record videos from your webcam and email them to anyone in the world. Instead of text, recipients will see and hear your message. There are several screen recording tools available for free which allow you to record video of your computer screen. CamStudio and Screenr are two I would recommend checking out. With a webcam one can record anything right from their computer, post it on YouTube, and then embed it or share the link. Here is an example of a recent video I made from my webcam called Why You Should Video Call Your Customers and How To Do It:

The technology tools mentioned above provide cost savings and improvements in the speed and effectiveness of communications. Check them out and leave me your comments.

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