Video conferencing among Federal workers can save $8 billion


Infotech Lead America: If half of all Federal workers used video conferencing, they could save three and a half hours a week in productivity savings, amounting to $8 billion annually.


Video Conferencing(source:

Following the release of Executive Order 13589 – Promoting Efficient Spending, 84 percent of respondents expect video conferencing use to increase within the next five years, according to a survey by Telework Exchange.


Video conferencing is an effective way to reduce already-tightened Federal budgets – 92 percent of respondents agreed increased video conferencing use would save tax dollars, while 73 percent agreed video conferencing would help reign in project timelines.


78 percent of respondents noted the greatest benefit to video conferencing is reduced business travel.


Other benefits include: money saved (70 percent), improved collaboration (53 percent), a reduced carbon footprint (49 percent), and improved work-life balance (47 percent). Respondents also believe that greater use of video conferencing could save their agencies more than 30 percent of their overall travel budgets, which equals nearly $5 billion of the Federal travel budget.


“In our experience, the largest barrier to the adoption of video conferencing has been the lack of device interoperability. Organizations should not have to worry about whether or not all participants are using the same video conferencing solution, computer, or mobile device,” said Stu Aaron, chief commercial officer at Blue Jeans Network.


76 percent agree that their respective agencies are not using video conferencing to the fullest extent possible.


The lack of available video conferencing tools is the leading problem (53 percent).


Additional issues include: network/bandwidth limitations (46 percent), lack of general use (41 percent), cultural barriers (40 percent), lack of awareness of video benefits (35 percent), cost concerns (34 percent), incompatible video conferencing platforms (33 percent), and lack of managerial buy-in (33 percent).


“Since the passage of the Telework Enhancement Act of 2010, we have seen an incredible change in how government is working together remotely,” said Cindy Auten, general manager, Telework Exchange.


“We are riding the wave of mobility and must arm Federal workers with the right tools to get the job done in the best way possible. Collaboration tools, like video conferencing, allow coworkers to come together visually but without lengthy travel, or large amounts of time away from one’s work station. It best enables cooperation and teamwork in these mobile times,” Auten added.


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