How to limit video conferencing fatigue?

How to limit video conferencing fatigue?

Have you been videoconferencing several times and are you feeling very tired? Here are a few tips to prevent you from becoming exhausted during your online meetings.

More tired than during a face-to-face meeting?

Videoconferencing saves time, especially in travel, but it does not always save energy. This is especially true in teleworking, where there are many online meetings, whether to keep track of ongoing projects or simply to maintain team cohesion.

Increased concentration in front of the webcam

Although face-to-face meetings can also be tiring, video conferencing requires a different kind of concentration from participants. Generally, participants are filmed by their webcam and tend to be constantly attentive, facing the camera. This requires a lot of energy and limits the possibility of taking a break. In a meeting room, it is often easier to move around or do something else without fear of generating questions from the other participants (looking at your notes, getting up to get a document or a glass of water, etc.).

More energy to communicate

In an online meeting, participants may need to amplify their reactions or gestures to show their interest or to make themselves better understood: for example, nodding or waving to their interlocutors during a presentation. This adds to the mental load and can lead to fatigue.

Not to mention that many studies have shown that we spend more time looking at our own reflection than that of our interlocutors during a video conference. A practice that could also have a tendency to affect our morale and fatigue.

Tips for limiting video conferencing fatigue:

Adapting the modes of exchange

As with face-to-face meetings, it is never a good idea to hold too many video conferences or to drag them out. Before scheduling a videoconference, it is therefore preferable to consider its purpose. Some online meetings can be replaced by a simple discussion between colleagues. With Tixeo’s Fusion mode, you can easily get in touch with a collaborator in a virtual open-space, to quickly exchange ideas without disturbing him/her too much.

Choose the right timing

When videoconferencing is essential, it is advisable to set a reasonable timing for the meeting. A video conference that lasts more than an hour is generally considered too long: the participants will tend not to pay enough attention and the exchanges will be less qualitative. Consequently, it will waste time (and energy) for all participants!

Make sure you have good brightness

The brightness of your screen should not be neglected during your online meetings. After several video conferences with too little or too much brightness, eye strain can quickly set in. In addition, you can activate a blue light filter on your computer to further protect your eyes. Regular breaks without looking at your smartphone are also recommended.

Take regular breaks

This is essential to recharge your batteries and avoid getting tired too quickly. Taking breaks of a few minutes after a video conference allows you to rest your eyes and take the time to assimilate all the information exchanged. It is advisable to get up and walk around, as if you were leaving the meeting room to go for a coffee or to your office, for example. The aim is to stretch your legs as much as possible in order to limit the harmful effects of a sedentary lifestyle, accentuated by teleworking and remote meetings.

Set up in a suitable environment

The environment of your videoconference is an important aspect that can lead to fatigue. Indeed, if you cannot isolate yourself, you will be bothered by surrounding noises which will force you to increase your concentration. You should therefore choose a quiet place, and if possible a closed one, to gain in serenity.

6 questions to ask yourself before starting a videoconference

video conferencing fatigue
Full remote: why are team buildind essential?

Full remote: why are team buildind essential?

Corporate seminars or team building allow teams to meet face-to-face in a new environment for one or more days, to revitalise the group.

Seminars strengthen team cohesion

Often spread over several cities or countries, fully remote teams only exchange information via videoconferencing and the vast majority of them never meet in person.

However, even if video collaboration tools have a multitude of features to facilitate teamwork, face-to-face meetings remain essential. Indeed, certain informal interactions or team meetings require the physical gathering of employees in order to encourage exchanges and create links.

During team building, certain team strategy games can even help to analyse group dynamics and identify improvements collectively. The result: a boost in individual motivation and collective energy.

A new environment conducive to exchange

Company seminars should be held in a neutral location that is unknown to everyone. Without their usual points of reference, employees will be placed on an equal footing and will feel freer to discuss their tasks and their well-being. They will also be more likely to participate in group activities.

Company seminars teleworking

The choice of venue must also be guided by practicality criteria: it is recommended to choose a place close to all amenities and to facilitate the organisation of the team as much as possible (carpooling, various reservations…), especially if the team building is an adventure.

Team building enhance the company’s culture

By definition, team building must create an event and therefore be rich in activities. It is in the company’s interest to choose them carefully as they will also enhance its internal culture.

Sports activities will work on team spirit and perseverance, while fun activities will encourage employees to let go and encourage moments of exchange. Cultural or creative activities will boost the creativity of the teams and the spirit of innovation.

Diversity of activities

It is highly recommended to alternate between work moments, such as brainstorming and general meetings, and moments of relaxation. The seminar should not be a simple extension of the daily work routine, nor should it be a simple event where teams have fun. There are many benefits to the company culture if the balance between the type of activities offered and the moments of free exchange and work is well maintained.

full remote team building

Team building for the onboarding of employees

When a new employee joins a 100% teleworking team, integration can be long and difficult. Company seminars, organised regularly throughout the year, are a way of introducing newcomers and ensuring that they can meet and talk to each other.

 

Establishing rituals and building loyalty among employees

Team building is a good way of valuing employees by placing them at the heart of the event. It can be interesting to set up rituals such as welcoming newcomers, celebrating the seniority of an employee or the implementation of a project.

Tixeo has been in full remote for 7 years now and organises quarterly seminars for its teams. As Renaud Ghia, President of Tixeo, explains in his interview on the HelloworkPlace website: “We make sure that the date of taking up the post [of newcomers] is close to the next team building event so that they don’t have to wait three months before physically seeing their colleagues! For us, video is for work, face-to-face is for having a good time.”

Company seminars therefore have many benefits for 100% telework collaboration: they maximise the knowledge of the teams, renew the collective dynamic and increase employee loyalty.

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The explosion of teleworking requires companies to strengthen their cybersecurity

The explosion of teleworking requires companies to strengthen their cybersecurity

Companies of all sizes are exposed to cybersecurity risks, especially with the digitalisation of working methods.

Telework, a source of attractiveness for companies

If teleworking facilitates the daily life of employees, it has also become a real advantage, highlighted in the recruitment process. According to this survey, 75% of the employees interviewed consider work hybridisation as a real competitive advantage for the company. Many of them would even be ready to leave their company if it did not offer telework.

In 2021, according to a Dares survey, more than 4,000 telework agreements were signed, ten times more than in 2017. This working method is no longer reserved for large organisations. Indeed, in the same survey, we learn that two thirds of the agreements signed were in companies with less than 300 employees, and 21% in companies with less than 50 employees.

The generalisation of telework will therefore continue and companies will have to be even more vigilant about protecting their data.

Cyber threats amplified by remote working

Between 2016 and 2020, the Ministry of the Interior in France observed an increase of more than 31% in ransomware attacks: cyberattacks that hold companies’ information systems hostage in exchange for money. The ANSSI indicates that the number of proven intrusions into information systems has increased by 37% in 2021. A growing threat to the cybersecurity of companies.

But other cybersecurity risks are amplified by teleworking, such as working with one’s personal computer. 20% of teleworkers are concerned (according to a Canon study). However, this practice is widely discouraged since, unlike the professional device, the employee’s device has not undergone the necessary security checks. In the event of an intrusion, the company’s entire information system could be compromised.

Protecting personal data

In addition to raising staff awareness and securing teleworking equipment, it is also important to ensure that the data itself is protected. Videocollaboration tools are the first vectors of sensitive and personal data: names and surnames of employees, meeting titles, confidential files, etc. Cybercriminals make them a prime target when it comes to accessing information about the company and its activity.

The policy on the management and processing of personal data from these tools is therefore an essential element to be taken into account in the cybersecurity strategy.

cybersecurity companies

Is 100% GDPR compliant video conferencing possible?

4 preconceived ideas about teleworking

4 preconceived ideas about teleworking

Telework is a much talked about issue, whether it is claimed or decried. According to the Malakoff Humanis Telework and Hybrid Organisations 2022 Barometer, at the end of 2021, 38% of employees were teleworking (8 points more than in 2019) and 68% of them chose to do so. Those who refuse to do so sometimes have persistent preconceptions about remote collaboration.

 

4 preconceived ideas about teleworking:

“Teleworking employees are less productive”

Working from home does not necessarily mean lower productivity. When all the right conditions for teleworking are met, the overall productivity of teleworking employees could even increase.

This is one of the observations of the latest report of the Conseil national de la productivté (CNP) published in May 2022. In particular, it tells us that “companies that made greater use of telework in 2019 were on average more productive and more resilient overall to the crisis” (study Bergeaud A., Cette.G. and Drapala S. 2021).  On the other hand, increasing the number of teleworkers by one point would increase the productivity of a company by 0.6%. In the long run, if telework is extended from 5% to 25% of total employment, the company could improve its productivity by 9%.

The suppression of commuting time is most likely the main factor in teleworker productivity. Indeed, it allows to reduce fatigue and thus to invest this time saving in other activities. The result is a better work-life balance that improves the well-being of employees in the long term.

“To generalise this way of working is to weaken collaboration”

According to the same NOC report, telework has made companies more resilient to the crisis, especially through their investment in digital technology.

This is one of the primary conditions for successful telework: the IT environment. Companies have equipped themselves with collaboration software and videoconferencing tools.

In the Odoxa survey published in 2021, on a sample of more than 2000 French people, we learn that 91% of employees say they have used at least one videoconferencing tool while teleworking. To optimise collaboration, these solutions must be efficient and perfectly mastered by the employees. Their level of security of exchanges as well as their hosting policy must also be taken into account to avoid all risks of espionage and data theft.

“Telework isolates employees”

This is the most persistent misconception. When we think of teleworking, we inevitably think of an employee alone behind a screen all day. However, if the company equips its employees with efficient video collaboration tools, professional and informal exchanges between teams can be as fluid as in person.

Tixeo’s videocollaboration solution includes a unique feature that allows teleworkers to meet in a virtual open-space and chat with their colleagues in one click.

 

“Working from home hinders creativity”

More than one in two workers say they feel more creative and have a greater capacity for innovation when teleworking“, says a Malakoff Humanis study published in 2021. Remote working allows new routines to be adopted. Thanks to video collaboration tools, the teleworker can also foster creativity.

In addition, teleworking also means having the opportunity to work outside the home. This opening to new environments allows one to think differently and to innovate.

How to facilitate collaboration in a flex office?

How to facilitate collaboration in a flex office?

The standardised office is no longer the norm, but the workspace can now change from one day to the next. This is the principle of the flex office, which has become widespread in companies in recent years with teleworking and hybrid working. Video collaboration tools are a way of guaranteeing the performance and reliability of this new way of working.

The flex office, a new corporate culture

With the development of teleworking, office space is shrinking. Employees are no longer all in the office at the same time, and even less in the same office every day.

The flex office is one response to this. It consists of changing the workspace according to daily tasks and professional or personal constraints.

An employee can thus choose to work from home on Monday, in the company’s coworking room on Tuesday or in a café on Wednesday. The principle is simple: to encourage mobility in order to decompartmentalise employees and make them more responsible. In addition, the flex office, like hybrid working methods, improves work-life balance. A free and happy employee?

A working method favoured by employees

In 2021, a Deskeo survey of nearly 4,000 workers (41% employees, 37% managers and 22% executives) revealed that 55% of them were considering the flex office. These statistics echo the growing need for mobility among employees. Some even push the boundaries by becoming digital nomads.

But flex office, like nomadism, cannot be improvised. These hybrid working methods require support and a certain agility. To facilitate collaboration in the flex office, it is first and foremost necessary to be equipped with video collaboration tools.

Facilitating exchanges

A computer and an Internet connection are enough to go and work by the coffee machine, on a terrace or in a meeting room. However, it is important not to forget to maintain the link with your colleagues. It is this team cohesion that will enable the benefits of the flex office to be reaped. Supporting employees in the good practices of the flex office (working hours and places, installation, equipment, etc.) is therefore necessary, as is maintaining excellent communication.

This is why the deployment of video collaboration tools is essential. The video collaboration solution must be easy to use and bring fluidity in the exchanges. Tixeo offers a video conferencing solution with many collaboration modes (virtual open-space, meeting, conference…). The video adapts to the quality of the user’s network, to guarantee an optimal quality of the discussions.

 

Secure communications

Although they offer the possibility of communicating quickly and efficiently, video collaboration tools must not expose the company to cyber attacks. In fact, in a flex office, employees work in various locations. They exchange company data via video conference which can be listened in on. This tool must therefore have a high level of security to protect these communications.

But today, most video collaboration solutions do not include cybersecurity in their commitments. Their data protection is generally insufficient and many publishers host their data abroad. Companies that use such software can then be confronted with cyber espionage.

Tixeo’s European video collaboration solution is the most secure on the market: it offers end-to-end encryption of communications which eliminates any risk of eavesdropping. No need to censor a sensitive topic during an online meeting, no backdoor can give access to communications.

 

Tixeo is the only video conferencing solution to be certified and qualified by the ANSSI

video collaboration

Accessible to all flex office employees, regardless of where they are located, the chosen video collaboration tool must be the subject of training. This avoids the multiplication of other software that could hinder collaboration.

The Tixeo video collaboration solution is secure by design: security is part of its foundations. Its deployment has no impact on the company’s network security policy. Indeed, only one port needs to be opened to install the solution. This saves time and provides unparalleled reliability.

5 tips to a successful return to teleworking from Julien, a developer at Tixeo

5 tips to a successful return to teleworking from Julien, a developer at Tixeo

Julien has been a developer for 2 years at Tixeo. He is 100% teleworking like all his colleagues. On the eve of the new school year, he agreed to answer our questions and give us 5 precious tips for successful teleworking and to be productive and feel good while working at home. Here they are!

First, tell us what you like about teleworking?

Julien: I had never teleworked before, but now I would find it hard to do without! The biggest advantage is that I save time because I don’t have to waste time on transport. My schedule is more flexible and I can spend more time on my hobbies.

There is also an ecological interest because we reduce the number of journeys, and that is something I am attached to and I think that it should develop.

The comfort at home is also very appreciable. For example, during the confinements, I didn’t have to wear a mask all day. I can also easily change my workplace from time to time or for long periods. It also makes it easier for me to consider a move.

tips for successful teleworking

What is a successful telework day for you?

Julien: It’s a day when I forget the distance between me and my colleagues. The simplicity and fluidity of our videoconferencing tool means that I work normally with the teams, almost as if we were in person.

To chat with a colleague, I just have to click on his or her bubble: it’s fluid, spontaneous and we gain in productivity. In addition, I have a coordinating role in my job, so it’s particularly important for me to have a video collaboration solution that facilitates exchanges.

What are the essentials for working at home?

Julien: First of all, of course, you need a good quality Internet connection because a poor connection has a direct impact on the fluidity of remote collaboration. The workspace must also be clearly identified. Ideally, you should have a separate room or mark out a “zone” with screens if you have a small area. Finally, you need to have the right equipment (chair, desk, lights, etc.). For this, you can use sites such as that of the Civil Service, for example.

What are your tips for successful teleworking ?

Julien :

  1. Get moving! You may not realise it, but you are at home all day. It is therefore important to maintain a good level of physical activity. Fortunately, there are no more excuses since we have more free time… And it’s still more pleasant to run in a park than to run after the bus or the underground!
  2. Take breaks: we already spend a lot of time on screens and when teleworking, this can become even more so. You should make sure you take regular visual breaks to spare your eyes.
  3. Exchanging, talking, chatting: it may seem trivial, but when teleworking, it is important to maintain the link with colleagues. Managers should be aware of the risk of isolation if these moments are not encouraged. Informing colleagues of progress and difficulties encountered in carrying out work. For example, a daily meeting (from the Agile method) is an essential moment for a teleworking team. This is when they synchronise on a common vision of the day’s agenda.
  4. Meet your colleagues! You can organise a moment with colleagues located near you, over a drink or a good meal. At Tixeo, every three months, we all get together for several days at a seminar. This is essential to maintain the team spirit.

Thanks again to Julien for this interview!