As professionals, we spend about 62 hours of our lives attending meetings each month. One might conclude that meetings must be effective and enjoyable in order for us to dedicate so much of our time to them. But it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to know that this isn’t the case. We actually waste about 31 hours a month in unproductive meetings. We could be spending that valuable time with our families, practicing a hobby, or earning more money.
And it doesn’t just affect us as individuals, it affects our businesses too. Unproductive meetings are costing our businesses time and money. In fact, an overabundance of crappy meetings are the number one cause of death to startups.
With that information said, one will likely conclude that this needs to change. But the question that lingers is, “How?”
Until recent times, we lacked the information to determine how to create better, more efficient meetings. The “Big Data Revolution” is completely changing this by giving us enough data, and enough information to answer all the questions we can come up with. More and more companies are beginning to realize that data analytics can be used in the meeting room, to cut out inefficiencies and make meetings more engaging and productive. Meeting analytics enable businesses to maximize the value of their resources, save time and money, and improve the credibility of a company.
Here are the top 5 reasons why meeting room analytics are so important:
From start to finish, planning and executing a meeting takes time. Even scheduling a meeting can take a million years. It’s difficult and timely to coordinate all the logistics: from coordinating attendee’s schedules’, finding an available room, with the right number of chairs and with all the tech and resources you need for the meeting.
You may find a time that works schedule wise, so you book the room, but find that this meeting is consistently running late. Do you know why? Could it be because people are having to rush over from another meeting, on the other side of a building? Or is it something else?
Meeting analytics help us quickly and easily coordinate the logistics of a meeting; but more importantly, they are scheduled to run more efficiently.
2. Identifying Inefficiencies
Meeting room analytics tell you what’s working, and what’s not. They give you accurate and real-time feedback on the meeting environment, logistics and attendees. They can help you answer questions and identify problems you may never have even thought of.
Are your meetings running ten minutes late because people are rushing over from another meeting? Or is it due to hard-to-use technology? Could it instead be because the presenters are constantly having to reconfigure device settings?
Using meeting analytics, you can answer these questions, so you can save those ten minutes every single week.
3. Get the Most Out of Your Space
Leasing space is not cheap; it is a major fixed cost for most companies. So, you want to make sure you are getting the most out of the space you have; but you also want to make sure you aren’t wasting money on unused space.
Meeting room analytics help businesses identify the most efficient use of space. Are some conference rooms being used more than others? Do you know why? What is it about that room that people like? Do you have enough conference rooms? Do you have too many?
For example, if you have trouble finding available conference rooms, you might come to the conclusion that you need to expand. However, it could be that the meetings are just not coordinated and timed properly. This insight could save you thousands a month.
4. Increase Productivity
As noted, meetings are notoriously unproductive…but do you know why? Is it because there are too many people in the room? Are people getting off-topic? Are you having the meeting too early or late in the day? Do the attendees have enough data and information to know what’s going on and to make a good decision? Would the meeting be more productive if it was held a week later? Or are people just bored?
Using analytics, you can identify which of these scenarios is causing an unproductive and inefficient meeting.
5. Identify Problems. Identify Solutions.
Now let’s assume you have discovered that your meetings are unproductive because people are bored. Well, now what? How do you solve this problem? How can you engage attendees? Luckily, analytics don’t just burden you with identified problems, but now, they can even help you identify solutions to those very problems.
Mobile event or meeting apps can combine the data they track with unstructured, external data (such as social media), to identify what people are talking about, and what interests them. The consolidated data will help you identify what topics and types of content audience members enjoy and engage with, and what they don’t. They can identify hot and trending topics to keep people interested, and even identify key connectors that you should have attend the meeting.
Then, or course, once the meeting begins, analytics tools will tell you in real-time if your adjustments are working. Meeting room sensors are able to track audience engagement, and provide users with that information in real time; and in the very near future, they will be affordable and accessible enough for just about any business. Learn more about the future of meeting room analytics here.