Key Factors Driving Rapid Videoconferencing Market Growth
The videoconferencing market is gaining momentum swiftly. In fact, a 2014 report from Transparency Market Research valued the global videoconferencing market at $3.69 billion. Add to that the anticipated compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 8.5 percent from 2015 to 2023, and global videoconferencing is set to be a multi-market, $7.85 billion powerhouse by 2023.
Why such projected growth? Let's break down the key factors fueling the surge.
Business is becoming more global. Many companies operate multinationally, and for good reason. A survey of over 750 senior executives from top-ranking companies found that 61 percent of the fiscally successful respondents saw globalization as one of the top three "megatrends" affecting their strategic workforce planning. "Technology convergence" and "digitization" were the other key players.
What's that mean? Just because businesses branch out geographically doesn't mean their communicative or operational efficiencies should suffer, and videoconferencing—specifically cloud based videoconferencing—presents a scalable, accessible, and cost-effective way to ensure that doesn’t happen.
Healthcare is going digital. Videoconferencing capabilities (both cloud-based and privately managed solutions) have increased the overall reach of healthcare services today. For example, some in-person visits have been replaced by what are popularly known as tele-consultations. Physicians can also communicate with and monitor patients remotely, reducing wait times without sacrificing visual contact or all-important “bedside manner.”
Education as we know it is changing. The last time the National Center for Education Statistics (part of the US Department of Education) released data on off-site collegiate enrollment was 2012—even then, the popularity of online education, much of that fueled through video learning, was evident. Their data showed almost 50 percent of degree-seeking students at private, for-profit schools were enrolled in online classes (whether entirely or partially).
Because of videoconferencing and other technological advancements, educational institutions can offer education or training to students located down the street or across the globe. Clearly (and in large numbers), they're taking advantage of it.
Companies see the collaborative value in face-to-face communication, even if it's on a screen. Face-to-face conversation and handshakes are ideal in the business world. They strengthen trust, bolster credibility, and offer unparalleled potential for connection. When they're not practical, though—when the distance is too far to cover, the cost is too high for travel or it wouldn't be the best use of time to bring all the parties in—videoconferencing is a phenomenal stand-in.
Much of communication is nonverbal (like gestures, body language, and facial expressions), so face-to-face interaction with colleagues over video can ensure messages aren't misinterpreted or emails aren't misread. It can also keep personal connections strong despite distance, a factor especially important in professional relationships based on mentorship and trust (teacher/student or doctor/patient).
Money talks. Budget is a factor for every company, whether enterprise-level or SMB. Lowering operational costs without lowering operational efficiencies is an ideal arrangement, and it's one uniquely provided by videoconferencing. From healthcare facilities to universities to boardrooms around the world, people are logging in remotely to maintain face-to-face contact without the costs and hassle associated with physical travel.
As a whole, technology has redefined how we live, learn and work. Videoconferencing, specifically, has proven to be vital for keeping connections and collaboration alive, and the growth forecast shows it's not expected to stop any time soon.