Bring everyone to the table: Equitable hybrid meetings with the Logitech Sight
Attending a meeting has never been simpler than in 2023. With the widespread adoption of video conferencing (VC) software, employees can interact and meet in the office, from home or anywhere. It has also meant that hybrid meetings, where some participants attend in person and others attend remotely, are now commonplace. Research from Google has shown that 83 percent of executives now expect to support some level of hybrid or all-remote work.
While hybrid work has brought numerous benefits – for example, consistent collaboration between employees (wherever they are) and reducing travel expenses – hybrid meetings are still not as seamless as face-to-face ones. In fact, Logitech’s Hybrid Meeting Survey found that 56 percent of respondents agreed that in-office participants tend to be more engaged during hybrid meetings as compared to those joining remotely. Remote attendees can feel disconnected from those seated in the meeting, resulting in an uneven playing field between them and in-person participants.
The disconnect is often created when virtual attendees do not get good visuals and audio from participants in the boardroom. Behavioural cues – slight frowns that may indicate a lack of understanding, or crossed arms that may indicate differences in opinions – are vital during meetings. However, they can be difficult to pick up when the participants are not in the same room, particularly when virtual attendees only have a bird’s eye view of the meeting.
A lack of ability to pick up these cues can create a sense of distance between remote and in-person workers, limiting productivity and collaboration. The disparity in visibility, engagement, and participation that springs from conversations between virtual and in-meeting attendees contributes to what is known as an inequitable meeting experience.
To address this need, Logitech – a leading provider of enterprise video conferencing solutions – has created a new AI-powered tabletop companion camera called Logitech Sight, that works with front-of-the-room cameras Rally Bar and Rally Bar Mini, to intelligently capture the best perspective of meeting participants and track conversations around the conference room.
With multiple camera angles and 315° video capture capabilities, the tabletop camera maintains a consistent front-facing view of in-person interactions as the conversation flows between them and remote participants. This helps remote workers feel as if they’re seated at the conference table, as opposed to sideline observers.
Research has shown that having opportunities to participate in the conversation is the most important factor in establishing a sense of equity in hybrid meetings. These opportunities are provided when all attendees, no matter their physical location, are heard and seen clearly. In fact, simply turning on one’s webcam during a remote meeting has been found to increase participation, satisfaction, and effectiveness by 20 to 50 percent.
Sight aids meeting participation by intelligently tracking where the conversation is in the room, identifying, framing, and following up to four speakers at a time and broadcasting the best possible view of the main speaker to remote attendees. It makes use of dual lenses that capture up to 4K video resolution, and these crystal-clear close-up shots are key to allowing every meeting attendee to view those all-important behavioural cues.
Sight also has seven beamforming microphones that detect active speakers using the direction from which the voices arrive. These audio and visual capabilities work together to remove any barriers that prevent remote participants from fully engaging in the discussion.
Participants have convenient mic mute controls at their fingertips, allowing them to quickly and easily mute or unmute the microphones in the room as required. The three colored LEDs on the Sight provide clear indications for video on/off, mute on/off, in-call status, power status, and more. Additionally, the magnetic privacy shade offers a simple way to ensure privacy by automatically turning off video capture when slid in front of the lenses.
Sight works seamlessly with leading video platforms such as Microsoft Teams, Zoom, and Google Meet, making it easy to deploy in most organisations, regardless of one’s tech know-how. It is also easily managed using the free Logitech Sync software to update, monitor and troubleshoot the device remotely.
Find out more about the Logitech Sight and how it can level your meeting room table here.
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