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Web Conferencing in ANZ: Making the Business Case

Web Conferencing in ANZ: Making the Business Case



This Springboard Research white paper presents an overview of the Web Conferencing market in Australia and New Zealand (ANZ) and the broader need for better collaboration and communication as a means ...

This Springboard Research white paper presents an overview of the Web Conferencing market in Australia and New Zealand (ANZ) and the broader need for better collaboration and communication as a means to drive improved business performance. The analysis is based largely on Springboard’s continuous tracking of the major IT and communication trends and developments in ANZ. We also interviewed key decision-makers from two local organisations, the Australian Businesswomen’s Network and Queensberry. Case studies highlighting both organisations’ experiences leveraging Citrix Online’s web conferencing solutions are included in this document.

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    Web Conferencing in ANZ: Making the Business Case Web Conferencing in ANZ: Making the Business Case Document Transcript

    • White Paper WEB CONFERENCING IN ANZ Author Michael Barnes Date October 27, 2009 Making the Business Case INTRODUCTION This Springboard Research white paper presents an overview of the Web Conferencing market in Australia and New Zealand (ANZ) and the broader need for better collaboration and communication as a means to drive improved business performance. The analysis is based largely on Springboard’s continuous tracking of the major IT and communication trends and developments in ANZ. We also interviewed key decision-makers from two local organisations, the Australian Businesswomen’s Network and Queensberry. Case studies highlighting both organisations’ experiences leveraging Citrix Online’s web conferencing solutions are included in this document. EXECUTIVE SUMMARY While never technically in recession, the Australian economy has certainly been affected by the global economic downturn. However, Australia (as well as New Zealand) has begun showing signs of recovery and is likely to be among the first major economies to emerge from the global recession. But key industries and businesses will continue to face a number of challenges in the short to medium time-frame. In the current environment, organisations are struggling with the often conflicting needs to cut costs and minimise upfront capital expenditures while effectively positioning (and in some cases investing) for the pending recovery. Meeting this challenge requires smart, targeted investments to improve organisational effectiveness and staff productivity, particularly in an environment where adding new staff is a less likely option. At the same time, organisations must seek ways to cost-effectively encourage ongoing innovation, promote collaboration between employees and with business partners, enhance productivity, and build/create more efficient business processes. These arePrepared by Springboard Research for Citrix Online 1
    • important not just for overcoming challenges in difficult business environments but also for ensuring that the organisation is well-positioned for future growth. Communication and collaboration tools (including but not limited to Web Conferencing), are certainly critical to help organisations cut travel costs and improve operational efficiencies. However, Springboard Research believes that effective communication, collaboration and information sharing between employees and with business partners and other key external audiences are also critical. These capabilities enable a culture of continuous innovation, enhancing organisational effectiveness and sustaining long term profitability. In fact, we believe that organisational effectiveness with regards to communications and collaboration is directly linked to sustainable growth and profitability. Moreover, the need to communicate and collaborate has grown exponentially as critical business functions, from R&D and manufacturing to sales and marketing, have all become geographically dispersed. Organisations must therefore make sensible investments in new technology and applications that facilitate effective communication and nurture a culture of collaboration. It is in this context that investments in web conferencing tools become critical. WEB CONFERENCING DEFINED Web conferencing is an application that allows people to gather online to share, discuss and edit any document, deliver presentations to an online audience, or visually demonstrate how a product or service works to prospects. Each participant in a web conference may sit at his or her own computer and is connected to other participants via the Internet. A web conferencing application can be either a downloaded application on each attendees’ computers or a web-based application where the attendees simply log in to a website to attend. In a web conference, participants can talk to each other through traditional audio while simultaneously text chatting, making the overall communication far more interactive and enriching. Some of the other key features of web conferencing applications are:  Recording and Playback – This allows participants to save a meeting locally to review or share later.  Annotation – This allows the presenter and/or participants in a conference to highlight or mark items on the screen.  Screen sharing/desktop sharing/application sharing – Participants can view anything the presenter shows on their computer screen. Some web conferencing tools allowPrepared by Springboard Research for Citrix Online 2
    • Web Conferencing and for remote desktop control, allowing participants to take control of the the Cloud presenter’s screen or show their own screen. Continued advancement in technology has made web conferencing a rich An important trend in web communication and collaboration experience. Instant messaging, white conferencing is the rise of on- boarding, application sharing, desktop sharing, web and audio demand applications and the conferencing, and document sharing are powering real-time collaboration. growing interest in broader Cloud These capabilities have made virtual interaction borderless, enabling Computing initiatives. On-demand people in remote locations to collaborate with each other as if they were conferencing applications are in the same room. Moreover, web conferencing offers users a rich and growing more pervasive as flexible experience. For instance, many conferencing applications offer enterprise adoption grows and the very high quality voice capabilities, along with the ability to share capabilities are made available to a presentations, graphics, visuals and software applications. larger base of users across the organisation. Drivers of this trend include growing broadband MORE THAN JUST A COST SAVER penetration across Australia and A common misconception is that web conferencing is just a travel New Zealand, which has spurred replacement tool that helps companies save money on business travel and demand for the lower upfront costs otherwise helps reduce communication costs. Cost savings will certainly and flexibility that on-demand remain a core benefit as web conferencing minimises investments in IT collaboration tools and applications infrastructure as there is no capital investment required to set it up. Flat can realistically provide. rate subscription options help ensure that operational expenditure is also Our research shows that on-demand minimal and there is no overshooting of communication budgets. In other or SaaS-based (Software as a words, web conferencing can be put to unlimited use by companies Service) access is playing a key role without concern over spiraling communication costs. in the growing popularity of web However, web conferencing provides scores of other benefits in addition conferencing applications. In fact, to cost savings. These range from improved communication with (and 82% of current web conferencing support for) customers to generating new business leads. Organisations users in Australia leverage these across Australia are increasingly taking advantage of these business solutions via SaaS. The SaaS model benefits. makes it easier for organisations to access these applications. In most The Australian Businesswomens Network, for instance, has greatly cases, there are no upfront costs increased its ability to roll-out education services for its members across involved and users can typically Australia, making the process both easier and quicker. Thanks to web choose from multiple pricing conferencing tools, this organisation can more effectively deliver business options. education to women across the country, better facilitate networking opportunities, and increase its level of contact with customers to generate business growth.Prepared by Springboard Research for Citrix Online 3
    • Key business benefits of web conferencing include:  Overcoming key business challenges, improving competitiveness and driving innovation: Increased competition, the growing cost of business operations, pressure on profit margins and decreases in spending by customers are all key challenges that organisations across Australia have been facing. In addition to a strong focus on improved operational efficiency, organisations must more effectively enable innovation and ideas to address these challenges. With web conferencing, between employees or with customers and business partners. This in turn can help drive innovation by generating a far greater number of potentially valuable ideas, insights and opportunities for improvements. "GoToMeeting is a  Extending organisational reach: Web conferencing cost-effectively helps fantastic product to organisations to overcome or even eliminate boundaries that are hindering growth, use! It has helped productivity, profitability and innovation. These include physical boundaries of us improve internal geography and distance as well as organisational boundaries across divisions, teams communication, and individuals. For instance, the convenience that web conferencing offers in terms reduce our training of ease of use and access can enable many more people to participate in important costs and made our business meetings and discussions that they would not otherwise attend. Moreover, sales team even in a country as geographically vast as Australia, reaching out to customers can still be more effective.” a major challenge for many companies. Web conferencing can not only help organisations overcome this challenge but also help make the interactions with Stephen Baugh, remote customers a far richer experience. C.E.O., Queensberry  Generating new business: Web conferencing can be an effective tool for acquiring new customers and engaging current ones to drive growth through on-line sales demos, webinars, etc. In particular, web conferencing can often prove crucial for helping companies engage new customers and prospects, (as well as other constituents) who could otherwise be difficult reach due to logistical or geographical constraints.  Delivering more effective marketing: Organisations can leverage web conferencing to not only expand the reach of their marketing initiatives but also engage a wider audience in a far more interactive format, which typically generate more interest than is possible using more traditional forms of communications.  Improving productivity and efficiency: Organisations can achieve enhanced productivity and efficiency when employees and business partners who are spread over multiple locations are able to meet and collaborate more frequently in real-time. Not only that, web conferencing allows meeting participants to see presentations, drawings, or documents, and even make changes to content and obtainPrepared by Springboard Research for Citrix Online 4
    • instantaneous feedback. Given these capabilities, there is no better way to maximise contributions from a diverse set of individuals spread across the country or indeed the world. “GoToMeeting has made it easy for us to provide training,  Improving employee satisfaction and effectiveness: Web engage our community and conferencing can help organisations to build better workplaces and improve deliver our product across employee motivation. With its ability to let people work from anywhere multiple locations. As a result without sacrificing productivity, it helps employees strike better work-life weve deepened the balance. This is essential for organisations seeking improved human resource relationships with our customers management outcomes, including retaining and motivating key staff, and revolutionised the enabling knowledge workers to share ideas, and provide improved employee education we offer.” flexibility and mobility. Suzi Dafnis, Community Director,  Delivering training and education more effectively to a broader Australian Businesswomens audience: As competition grows and the struggle for new customer Network acquisition intensifies, successful organisations must continuously seek ways to upgrade the skills of their employees, business partners and associates. Web conferencing provides a highly interactive, dynamic mechanism for delivering this training and education. CITRIX GOTOMEETING CORPORATE Citrix has a broad range of product offerings in the on-demand communications and collaboration space, including GoToMyPC, GoToWebinar, and GoToAssist. For web conferencing, however, Citrix GoToMeeting Corporate is the company’s core solution. GoToMeeting Corporate is specifically positioned to help organisations of all sizes overcome the traditional shortcomings of online meeting solutions; high costs, complex products and low employee adoption. Key benefits and features of Citrix GoToMeeting Corporate include:  Ease of Use – As the following case studies illustrate, users consider the product’s intuitive user interface (UI) is a key differentiator. This is a critical consideration in environments where user adoption cannot be mandated but must instead be encouraged and made as simple as possible.  Flat Rate Pricing – Both Web and VoIP/phone conferencing is included in flat rate pricing, meaning there are no limits on meeting or Webinar duration or frequency, and no overage charges.Prepared by Springboard Research for Citrix Online 5
    •  Performance – Users we interviewed confirmed GoToMeeting’s solid performance, particularly in terms of getting into sessions and screen sharing. In addition to GoToMeeting product capabilities, the overall value of Citrix SaaS solutions includes a global infrastructure that includes Australia-based datacenters/servers, 24/7 support and seamless upgrades and maintenance with little or no IT involvement required. These product capabilities and infrastructure help Citrix web conferencing solutions compete effectively with the offerings of WebEx and Microsoft, two other leaders in this market space. CONCLUSION The past six months have given enough indications that the economies in Australia and New Zealand are beginning to improve. It is highly likely that the countries will return to an era of stronger economic growth by the end of 2010. A recovery will definitely provide new opportunities. However, wiser from their experience during the downturn, customer spending in most sectors is likely to lag for several more quarters. As such, if organisations have to build business value and exploit the opportunities that a rebounding economy will offer – tools like web conferencing will play a critical role.Prepared by Springboard Research for Citrix Online 6
    • WEB CONFERENCING IN PRACTICE Case Study 1: Australian Businesswomen’s Network – http://www.abn.org.au Organisation Australian Businesswomens Network is an organisation delivering mentoring, education and training programs to its members (primarily SMBs) spread across Australia. Key Challenges ABN has approximately 10,000 community members in Australia. Given the country’s size, these members are spread across the country in both cities and towns. The diverse location of its members has traditionally made it difficult for ABN to effectively deliver education services countrywide as its programs are typically organised in one or two cities. Moreover, as ABN members are women they often have additional responsibilities in their non-work environment. These responsibilities make it sometimes difficult for members to commute and attend meetings away from home. The Solution To address these challenges, ABN needed to extend their reach to multiple locations without making a significant capital investment. They needed an outcome that would make it easier for a larger proportion of members to participate in training and education programs, preferably from the convenience of their homes. They also needed a solution that was easy to install and use, enabled interactivity during training sessions, and allowed its members to connect, collaborate and communicate more effectively. With these needs in mind, ABN selected a web conferencing application which they believed would help them address its challenges. However, ABN’s initial experience was not very satisfying, as the first web conferencing application they deployed was overly complex and ultimately cost-prohibitive. In March 2009, ABN switched to Citrix Online’s GoToMeeting and GoToWebinar, in large part due to the products’ ease of use and intuitive interfaces. Other features that attracted ABN to GoToMeeting included its strong reporting and archiving capabilities as well as support for both Windows and Apple operating systems. Finally, ABN found GoToMeeting’s flat-rate pricing attractive. Citrix Online BenefitsPrepared by Springboard Research for Citrix Online 7
    • Citrix GoToMeeting and GoToWebinar helped ABN effectively reach out to more members while simultaneously deepening its relationship with them. Some of the specific benefits ABN has obtained from GoToMeeting and GoToWebinar are highlighted below:  The ability to roll out education across Australia has increased – ABN is more quickly and efficiently delivering an increased level of education and training to its members.  The frequency and reach of programs has multiplied – In the past, due to a lack of resources, the ABN could only manage 10 live events per year in one city – now they deliver 3-4 events per month across Australia. This has resulted in more opportunities for members to improve and update their business skills and knowledge, and to network locations.  ABN’s relationship with members has deepened – Members are using ABN services more frequently and the overall number of people who participate in training and education programs has increased.  More contact with members has resulted in more business – With the increased frequency of training and education programs, as well as the increased number of participants, ABN reports more opportunities to do business with its members.  The interactivity of training and education programs has increased – The Citrix application allows comments and questions from participants. This increase in interactivity has meant that trainers / mentors have a better understanding of the members’ feelings and needs and can more effectively tailor programs to those needs.  Better management of tele-conferencing costs – With Citrix GoToMeeting, ABN has reduced its teleconferencing costs by more than 60%, from A$1800 to A$500 per month.  Better work-life balance for members and ABN employees – With Citrix GoToMeeting, more people are able to effectively work from home. This has helped them better manage other responsibilities and obligations while also significantly reducing commuting time and cost.  Increased ability to share content with members who cannot attend programs – As Citrix GoToMeeting provides the ability to record meetings, meeting contents are now more effectively shared with members who are unable to attend live events.Prepared by Springboard Research for Citrix Online 8
    • Case Study 2: Queensberry - http://www.queensberry.com Organisation Queensberry is an Auckland, New Zealand-based designer and manufacturer of photo albums. The company also provides album design software for use by professional photographers. Most of Queensberry’s customers are small businesses located outside New Zealand. Key Challenges Queensberry’s small business customers and prospects are located all over the world, operating in different time zones. Product demonstration costs over the telephone or face-to-face are therefore prohibitively expensive. Additionally, Queensberry prospects and customers have been calling the company directly to get details of products available on the Queensberry website. Both the remote sales personnel and the Auckland-based sales team are typically involved in responding to these requests. Another issue is that of coordination among various sales teams. Queensberry has three locations in Auckland, and a number of people working from home as well as from remote locations. Collaboration among the teams across various locations and time zones is a major administrative headache. The Solution To address these challenges, Queensberry needed a solution that would enable them to communicate more effectively with each other and their customers. Approximately 18 months ago, the decision was taken to implement Citrix Online’s GoToMeeting. According to Queensberry, this resulted in a dramatic reduction in call costs, a significant increase in the profitability of customer and employee interactions, and exceptional customer experience. Queensberry originally adopted Citrix GoToMeeting in March 2008, citing ease-of-use as a key factor. With this transition to Citrix GoToMeeting, Queensberry also realised a cost savings over their previous service. In terms of ease-of-use, Queensberry was surprised to find that during the initial trial, the least enthusiastic and most non-technical person became the most successful at using GoToMeeting. She was also able to demonstrate the Queensberry website to prospects and customers with ease.Prepared by Springboard Research for Citrix Online 9
    • The Sales Manager also confirmed that it had become easier for the Sales team to talk to prospects and customers. She was able to manage a larger sales team and cover far more customers and regions. Her ability to increase Queensberry’s market coverage with the same amount of sales staff was enhanced further in June 2009, when Queensberry started using Citrix GoToWebinar to engage with prospects globally with Web events. GoToMeeting proved to be of great use for internal communication as well. Queensberry has a number of people working around the world, both from home offices as well as across 3 offices in Auckland. Successful internal communication is always challenging, but GoToMeeting has resolved these problems by providing an easy way to collaborate online. An additional benefit has been to the Queensberry Support team, which has also found that Citrix GoToMeeting was of great use to them in training their customers on both Windows PC and Mac platforms. Citrix Online Benefits Citrix GoToMeeting and GoToWebinar have helped Queensberry deepen its relationships with both existing customers and prospects through more frequent, dynamic interaction. Some of the specific benefits Queensberry has obtained from GoToMeeting and GoToWebinar are highlighted below:  Improved market reach and sales management – The Sales team has been able to target far more people than before, with even the most non-technical sales staff now able to demonstrate the Queensberry website to prospects and customers with ease. Sales management has also confirmed that Queensberry is now able to handle a larger sales team and cover far more customers and regions.  Increased frequency and ‘richness’ of internal communications – Queensberry finds that they are able to communicate with staff working from home, staff working from international offices and even their team in all three Auckland offices more effectively and efficiently.  Better feedback from customers – Queensberry has confirmed that they are now more responsive to customer requests. This improvement in customer experiences has in turn helped generate far more positive ‘word of mouth’ referrals than was possible prior to Queensberry using Citrix GoToMeeting.  Improved communication-related cost management – With Citrix GoToMeeting, Queensberry has cut its communications costs significantly, freeing resources that can be more effectively targeted at growing the business.Prepared by Springboard Research for Citrix Online 10
    • E-MAIL Sales/Marketing: sales@springboardresearch.com Research: research@springboardresearch.com CONTACTS Careers: careers@springboardresearch.comwww.springboardresearch.com AUSTRALIA Level 12 1 Pacific Highway North Sydney, NSW 2060 Australia Tel: 61-2-9959-1926 INDIA NSCI Bhawan, STP Extension 2nd Floor, Okhla Industrial Estate New Delhi 110020 India Tel: 91-11-4051-8181 JAPAN Level 6, Gloria Building, 3-6-15 Kasumigaseki, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 100-0013 Japan Tel: 81-3-5251-3032 PAKISTAN 4th Floor, Software Technology Park 5-A, Constitution Avenue, Islamabad Pakistan Tel: 92-51-282-8668 SINGAPORE 72B Tras Street Singapore 079011 Tel: 65-6325-9716 U.S.A. 5201 Great America Parkway Suite 320 Santa Clara, CA 95054 U.S.A Tel: 408-730-2680 CHINA 3/F, North Tower, No.1 Guang Hua Road, Chaoyang District, Beijing 100020 China 86-10-6599-7916 Contacts