The amount of time we collectively spend in meetings today is striking.
In the US alone, the Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates there are between 36 and 56 million business meetings held every day. On average, employees attend 62 meetings each month.
With so much of people’s days being devoted to meetings, leaders in almost every organization have begun looking for ways to relieve the strain meetings can put on productivity, and reap more of the benefits that real-time collaboration and meetings have to offer.
As it turns out, there’s a simple solution to this challenge that several Fortune 500 companies have already discovered: record all your company’s meetings.
By recording meetings, you can turn the conversations your employees are already having — whether in conference rooms or on video calls — into valuable information resources that minimize the time meetings take away from your employees and maximize the impact meetings can have on your bottom line.
It’s not as crazy as it sounds. We break down the 10 most compelling reasons to start recording all your meetings below.
10 Reasons To Start Recording Meetings
1. No one has to miss a meeting.
Sometimes getting the right people together at the same time can be the biggest hurdle to moving a project forward. Web conferencing can remove geographic barriers, but it won’t allow people to attend two meetings at once or eliminate scheduling challenges between colleagues on opposite sides of the world.
Recording video of meetings and presentations ensures that no one has to miss out on a discussion or any of the visuals that people in the meeting room can see. On-demand videos can be shared with attendees who can’t attend in person, regardless of geographic distance or last-minute schedule conflicts, so everyone has access to the same information covered in a meeting.
What’s more, when you start recording your meetings, busy employees and leaders — often pulled in multiple directions — gain more control over their schedules. Meeting invites are no longer first-come, first-served, as people can allocate their time to meetings where they can be most impactful — and still review and contribute to the lower-priority meetings they couldn’t attend in person.
2. Improve focus and engagement in the meeting.
Recording meeting videos gives your people an exact record of everything that was presented and discussed — a perfect fallback resource for anyone who’s ever thought, “Didn’t we discuss that in our meeting last week?”
When attendees know a recording will be available, they don’t need to take copious notes in case they need to reference something later. And meeting leaders can more easily request that attendees minimize distractions on their computer screens. This enables employees to focus and participate more deeply, making your meetings even more valuable and effective.
3. Reduce time spent duplicating efforts.
Project managers and meeting leaders are, by now, somewhat used to sitting down at their computers immediately following a meeting and spending time typing out notes, next steps, and other action items to send off to the team.
With a recording of the meeting, however, that’s a step that’s simply no longer needed. Instead, meeting owners can send a link to the meeting video itself, and teammates can quickly search that recording to find any details they need right when they need them.
All that, in turn, frees up more time for your team to make more progress on their projects. Of course, on an individual basis, the time savings may be small — but when you consider that each and every employee is attending an average of 62 meetings every month, it’s easy to see how all those minutes and hours add up.
4. No detail can get lost or forgotten.
Meetings are valuable because they give people time to discuss a ton of information and come to a consensus more quickly than they could in an email thread.
But handwritten notes, meeting minutes, and even audio recordings can’t capture every discussion and every decision as well as the actual slides, screen shares, and whiteboards utilized during a meeting. Meeting notes and minutes, in particular, are also influenced by the perspective of the note-taker, which means different people will expectedly document different parts of a meeting they think are important in different ways.
A video recording captures it all exactly as it happened, so you really can know exactly who said what, what specific details were shared, which decisions were made (and how), and which action items were assigned.
Watch a project status meeting captured and shared with Panopto:
5. Get new contributors up to speed quickly.
Projects rarely take a linear path from start to finish — teams often change when priorities do, or expand when new expertise is needed. It’s up to the project manager to get new contributors up to speed quickly every time that happens.
Having recordings of your previous meetings can be exceptionally valuable when it comes time to brief new team members on an ongoing project’s progress and goals. Instead of having to pause the work in order to schedule download meetings and waiting for information from others involved with the project, new contributors can review past meetings to get all the details they need to begin working on a project.
6. Collaborate outside the conference room.
Today, we’re accustomed to continuing collaboration outside of the meeting room (or beyond the conference call) through email, shared documents, and productivity hubs like Slack. None of these communication solutions, though, make it easy to reference specific discussions that happened during a meeting — or worse, they require the creation of an entirely new document or messaging thread.
When you record a meeting, you have a complete document in which people can reference specifics, either by sharing a link to an exact moment in the video through other messaging channels or by collaborating right inside of the meeting recording. A video platform like Panopto makes it possible to not only leave timestamped comments but also to have threaded discussions right inside your recordings.
All that matters because, as much as meetings are invaluable opportunities to exchange information and keep projects moving, they are still bound by time. Enabling your meeting recordings to be a useful part of all your teams’ other asynchronous communications will make both your meetings and your other communications more complete and more useful.
7. Understand how we got here and why decisions were made.
As change initiatives, important projects, and fiscal quarters come to a close, most organizations find tremendous value in holding a “post-mortem,” reviewing what the results where, how they got to those results, and what should be done in the future.
But when important milestones and decisions occur over a long period of time, or when a big project involves dozens of people and hundreds of moving parts, it can be hard for anyone to accurately recall all the critical moments that helped the work along.
Searchable meeting recording archives and transcripts can provide more complete context and insights for leaders looking to learn from things that went well and things that went, well, not-so-well.
8. Compile a library of institutional knowledge.
You want your people to share information and institutional knowledge. But doing so in a meeting can be a double-edged sword for the employee — while sharing something useful or insightful in a meeting may make things easier for everyone else, doing so often leads to more work and interruptions for the team member themselves. And that can quickly negatively impact their productivity, as undoubtedly that expert will be asked to share that knowledge again and again, either in one-on-one explainers or in formal written documentation or both.
If, however, you’re recording your meetings and archiving those in a video library, there’s no need to ask your expert to repeat themselves, or to add a hefty documentation task to their already long to-do list. Instead, others can simply watch the relevant moments from the original meeting. And if more information still needs to be shared, your expert can quickly record a video of themselves presenting those details — which usually takes far less time than it would take to create a formal written document to add to your knowledge base.
What’s more, capturing the knowledge and information shared during meetings at your organization enables your business to proactively build a massive library of institutional knowledge that can be searched and referenced at any time, even after an expert and their valuable insights have left the company.
9. Discover teachable moments and build a culture of transparency.
Many things can happen in meetings behind closed doors that can strain not only productivity but also relationships between employees and even morale. When it comes to conducting efficient meetings and fostering transparency in your corporate culture, there are many insights that can be gained from reviewing meeting recordings, which in turn can help you to coach and support the growth and development of your employees.
Meeting recordings can enable not only managers and mentors but also the meeting leaders themselves to review how a meeting was conducted. Observing meetings can help your people identify and correct bad meeting behaviors, as well as daylight opportunities for adapting interpersonal communications and leading more productive meetings.
10. Gather previously undiscoverable insights about your business.
Most organizations truly know very little about how meetings are impacting their businesses today. While there are a few nice tools online for analyzing your own
work calendar that may tell you how much time you’re spending in meetings, getting that information for your company as a whole is challenging if not impossible for most businesses.
When you record and archive all your meetings, you create a new data source that can provide a whole set of never-before-available information you can analyze to help you learn and make better decisions about how to evolve your workplace’s meeting culture, and in general, more efficiently run your business.
Meeting Capture: It’s More Than Pressing Record
Recording your meetings — using the conference room technology and unified communications tools you already have — can help make your people more productive by enabling them to revisit key meeting moments or view conversations they weren’t able to join live, while also protecting your company by providing a record of what happened during each interaction.
That said, encouraging your teams to press “record” is only part of the solution.
To fully unlock the potential value of sharing meeting recordings as a means to enhance productivity and collaboration, you also have to find a way to actually share the recordings. And that is the hurdle that trips up most early adopters.
By now, a number of your conference rooms have cameras installed, and most video conferencing solutions offer native recording capabilities.
But once the meeting is over and your recording is finished, all too often your people are left to jump through a lot of hoops to get access to all that valuable information. Recording alone simply isn’t enough.
It’s absolutely necessary to intelligently manage your meeting recordings, to ensure they’re securely retained and shared only with the intended audiences, and to make sure that those audiences are able to consistently access and quickly search through the content of those videos that are shared with them.
Which is why a complete meeting capture solution does more than just record. It takes those recordings and makes searching, sharing, and watching those videos later easy, while keeping everything secure.
Want to learn more about how to enable meeting capture across your entire organization? Download our latest white paper >>