BASKING RIDGE, N.J. -- Organizations will be able for the first time to measure how well their members work together and gauge how to improve collaboration, using a new Collaboration Calculator introduced by Verizon Business.
The Web-based tool, developed by Frost & Sullivan for Verizon Business, is designed to help large businesses and government agencies quickly and simply measure the effectiveness of existing collaborative initiatives and determine potential next steps for improving teamwork to help support common business objectives and improve performance
[NOTE: An audio podcast discussing the Collaboration Calculator is available by linking to the Verizon Business Collaboration, Conferencing and Communications Press Kit at http://newscenter2.verizon.com/kit/bus-collab-conf-comm/.]
"In today's highly competitive global marketplace, effective collaboration can be a strategic competitive differentiator," said Nancy Gofus, senior vice president and chief marketing officer for Verizon Business. "Our Meetings Around the World study last year demonstrated the direct correlation between collaboration and business performance. This year, we're making the mechanics behind that study directly available to our customers to help them assess how best to use collaborative technologies to help boost their own competitive edge."
Measuring the Impact of Collaboration and Business Performance
Collaboration is a key driver of business performance, according to "Meetings Around the World: The Impact of Collaboration on Business Performance," a study conducted in 2006 by Frost & Sullivan and sponsored by Verizon Business and Microsoft Corp. The study -- which defined collaboration as an interaction between culture and technology such as audio and net conferencing, e-mail and instant messaging -- also found that professionals around the world see their collaborative efforts as highly productive and believe that collaboration through communications technologies can provide a competitive advantage. Full details of the report can be found at http://newscenter2.verizon.com/kit/collaboration/.
The Collaboration Calculator uses the methodology of the Meetings Around the World study so organizations can directly measure the impact of their own collaborative efforts against the study's Global Collaboration Index.
Like the Meetings Around the World study, the Collaboration Calculator addresses multiple aspects of a business or government organization's makeup, including market and number of employees, an organization's collaborative culture, organizational structure and its use of collaborative technologies -- such as instant messaging, audio conferencing, video conferencing, Web conferencing and meeting scheduler -- which generates a Collaboration Index score. Based on these aspects, the Collaboration Calculator generates an organization's Collaboration Index score, which is then compared with the overall index score in the Meetings Around the World study and, if applicable, to companies in the region, industry sector and of similar size.
Participants are assigned a ranking of Above Average, Average or Below Average. The Calculator can also identify gaps in the use of technology to help guide the way to make improvements.
"This Collaboration Calculator brings the Collaboration Index to life. The Meetings Around the World study put the use of conferencing and collaboration technologies under a microscope," said Brian Cotton, vice president at Frost & Sullivan. "This is a good example of a real-world application of that study and how organizations can put it to use to benefit their operations."
In an initial deployment of the Collaboration Calculator, Verizon Business customer Siemens Medical Solutions USA Inc. was identified as an above average collaborator.
Siemens Medical Solutions turned to collaboration technologies, including Verizon Audio and Net Conferencing, as a way to communicate to a global employee and client base.
"The cost of travel from moving people around the globe, several times a year, can really add up," said Nanci Wozniak, director, clinical education services, Siemens Medical Solutions. "We use conferencing as a cost-effective and productive way to move projects forward and for remote-training initiatives."
In addition to training its staff to deploy software upgrades and technology changes, Siemens Medical Solutions needed a way to inform its clients about the upgrades and changes in a fast, efficient and cost-effective manner. Deploying Audio and Net Conferencing fit the bill.
Verizon Business, through its expansive global network, is a leading provider of conferencing and collaboration services, enabling organizations to conveniently and effectively collaborate, virtually anytime, anywhere, and helping them improve response time and productivity without the costs associated with business travel. Verizon Business features a wide range of audio, video and Web conferencing offerings, IP-based services and some of the most advanced meeting tools available, like Telepresence. With more than 30 years of experience delivering conferencing services, Verizon Business today handles millions of virtual meetings each month.
About Verizon Business
Verizon Business, a unit of Verizon Communications (NYSE: VZ), is a leading provider of advanced communications and information technology (IT) solutions to large business and government customers worldwide. Combining unsurpassed global network reach with advanced communications, security and other professional service capabilities, Verizon Business delivers innovative and seamless business solutions to customers around the world. For more information, visit www.verizonbusiness.com.