Industry Insights

27 October 2021

How to Manage a Hybrid Meeting

A hybrid meeting is when some attendees are virtual via online software such as Teams or Zoom and some attendees are gathered face-to-face. This approach to meetings has become increasingly popular recently now that businesses are beginning to have small numbers of employees working from the office again.

It is essential to plan ahead when organising a hybrid meeting to ensure that everything runs smoothly, as there are a variety of issues that can occur when they are not thoroughly thought through in advance. Below is our guide to running a successful hybrid meeting;

  • Firstly, it is key to identify the platform that the attendees propose to use. For larger organisations, this will typically be standardised, meaning a dedicated platform is used for all video conferences. However, smaller organisations may take a ‘mix and match’ approach by using different platforms, depending on user preference, legacy protocols or an undefined workflow.
  • Once the above mentioned information has been obtained, it will then allow planning of your hybrid meetings to commence. Larger organisations and organisations that have a dedicated platform can look to provision a purpose built solution, such as the Logitech tap or Lenovo’s ThinkSmart. Both systems will allow you to invite guests and colleagues and launch meetings from an easy to use touch panel. If you have a variety of platforms to manage, then looking for an agnostic solution will be vital. A platform agnostic solution, such as Mersive’s Solstice pod will leverage a user laptop to manage the conference and connect it to the meeting room tech, allowing users to utilise the rooms camera and microphone.
  • Once you have a suitable solution, it is essential to make sure the purpose of the meeting is clear and appropriate for a hybrid approach. If the meeting is likely to be discussion based, then this is ideal, however if the meeting is, for example, revolving around designs that are only available as print outs to the ‘in-person’ attendees, then this may not be suitable for the hybrid approach. Use of things such as flip charts or other visual aids may not be easily visible to online attendees, making it difficult for everyone to have a valuable input.
  • It is important to arrange your meeting space so that all ‘in-person’ attendees can be captured in a clutter free, wide-angle view of the area. All equipment that may be required should be kept at close reach so that it doesn’t cause a major interruption to the meeting.
  • Ensure the use of good quality audio equipment. Good quality microphones and speakers are essential to hybrid meetings running smoothly.
    If you would like to discuss your requirements for audio equipment, please contact us.
  • An essential step of preparing for a hybrid meeting is testing the technology in advance. It is essential to make sure that all cameras, microphones and all other equipment is working properly ahead of the meeting to reduce the chance of delays and difficulties.
  • Once the meeting commences, completing a soundcheck with all virtual attendees can prove useful as if there are any issues, they will be identified and rectified early in the meeting.

Our top tip from IVC’s Technical Sales Engineer, Byron Edwards:

“Start by identifying the current workflow and platform(s) used by your organisation. Select a dedicated meeting room that can be used to host a hybrid meeting. Select a suitable solution or speak with an integrator or consultant who can help you provision the equipment. Test, test and more testing until you are satisfied that the solution is working as intended. From here, invite colleagues to try out the system and give feedback. Finally, use this feedback to tune your system and workflow. Once completed, you should have a successful hybrid meeting strategy, workflow and space, ready to streamline meetings, invite remote participants and collaborate.”

The amount of hybrid meetings taking place are soaring within businesses. When carried out successfully, they are an incredible asset to any working team, in all industries. If you would like to speak to us about a project, please feel free to call us on 01935 432121 or the enquiry form on the Contact Us page.