Why Use Teleconferencing?
So here you are, with a big project almost finished but you're on a really tight deadline and if you could just get all of your team together to collaborate on the final execution points, you know everything will be done on time and on quality. This is where a teleconference service really comes in handy. Teleconference services will let you get everyone on the same telephone call and inevitably on the same page regardless of the geographic location.
What is a Teleconference?
By definition a teleconference is just a meeting by telephone with multiple participants. The terms teleconference and teleconferencing are synonymous and used interchangeably with conference call and conference calling. A teleconference has three or more callers joined together on a single telephone call using a conferencing bridge usually managed by a conferencing service provider and refers only to audio conferencing. This excludes video and web conference technologies from the definition.
Teleconference Service Formats and Options
There are two main types of teleconferencing services. There's reservationless teleconferencing and operator-assisted teleconference services, both options with their respective benefits and merits.
A reservationless conference call will be fully automated, available anytime and is relatively inexpensive. The teleconference participants each dial-in into a dedicated conference telephone line and enter a unique conference ID. This conference call ID is responsible for routing everyone into the same telephone call. It's fast, easy and very efficient for basic conference calls that require little attendee management.
An operator-assisted teleconferencing service requires human interaction with specialized conferencing operators trained to manage and facilitate conference calls making it easy and carefree for the host but the need for service staffing will increase your per minute rates. When you'd like to collect or confirm the identity of your callers before joining them into the call or you'd like someone to introduce topics and speakers or dial-out to participants, an operator-assisted conference call will likely be the better option.
Many organizations use both types of teleconferencing services to fit their specific needs at the time of each event. Most common is the use of reservationless conference calls for everyday conferencing and planned operator-assisted conference events that usually require a bit more planning and detail. Either way you choose, the benefits and efficiencies of teleconferencing today are numerous.