Using International Conferencing for Overseas Vendor Collaboration and Status

Using International Conferencing for Overseas Vendor Collaboration and Status

Overseas Vendor CcollaborationUsing International Conferencing for Overseas Vendor Collaboration and Status

With vendors located all over the globe, international conferencing becomes a vital tool in your supply chain management process. While numerous communications methods exist, being able to speak with multiple parties at once can ensure that nothing is overlooked or left to chance. At the same time, being able to hear each other’s tone of voice can prevent misunderstandings and lead to more personal relationships.

Why Use International Conferencing for Vendor Collaboration and Status?

If you only need to speak with one vendor located in another country, using a traditional phone will do the job. However, when other parties such as other vendors, trade consultants, freight forwarders, brokers, and regional team members need to join the call, a traditional phone system may not be the best choice. For starters, your phone system may not be able to support more than a handful of callers at once. In addition, your vendors may face hurdles or restrictions in dialing an international phone number.

An international conference call can overcome these problems. With an international conferencing plan, you can host low-cost global conference calls with as many participants as you would like.

International conferencing overcomes international dialing problems by offering local and toll free numbers for hundreds of countries around the world. This means that your vendors will dial either a local or a toll free number (depending on how you set up the call) that is local to their countries. If you opt for toll free international conferencing, you will be charged per minute, per participant based on each participant’s countries’ calling rates. Alternately, you could set up the international conferencing system to automatically dial each participant’s phone number at the scheduled time. This option works well when calling costs are high as it usually results in a lower per minute rate.

Not only does international conferencing overcome many dialing issues, using a teleconference to collaborate with vendors allows for real-time discussions in an engaging, productive environment. For example, if you need to solve a problem within your supply chain, a teleconference is perfect for asking questions, getting answers, clarifying expectations, and providing guidance.  It can also ensure that everyone is on the same page as well as prevent you from having to repeat yourself to multiple participants. You can also record your international conference calls to share with involved parties who might not have been able to participate in person.

Holding More Productive Vendor Meetings with International Conferencing

While international conferencing is easy to set up and use, your time, and the time of your vendors, is valuable. In addition to being respectful of time, holding more productive vendor teleconferences can reduce your international conferencing costs. Though international conferencing is a low-cost alternative to travel, you will incur costs with each conference call you host. Since you pay by the minute per participant, running an efficient teleconference can make a bigger difference than you may realize.

Start by determining the answers to the following questions:

▪ What is the purpose of the call? What is the desired outcome of the call?

▪ Who should attend? Will there be language barriers? Is a translator available?

▪ Will others need time to speak to the group? For example, an engineer may be better able to explain a component’s specs to a manufacturer than you would. If so, it makes sense to invite the engineer to address the vendors during the conference call.

▪ What questions do you need answered?

▪ Which tasks will be assigned and to whom?

▪ What supporting documents should be distributed prior to the call?

▪ How much time should the call last and is this sufficient for the call’s purpose?

▪ What countries are involved? What time zones? What time and date is the most practical for those involved?

▪ Would a recording of the teleconference be helpful to attendees after the fact?

The answers to these questions should guide you in designing an agenda for the call and scheduling it. By defining the purpose and expected outcome in advance, you can then create a focused agenda that moves the teleconference strategically from one key point to the next.

Once you’ve identified who should attend the teleconference, determine if their attendance is absolutely necessary. This can help you in scheduling the call around the most important participants’ schedules and time zones. For example, if you have several vendors in China who absolutely must attend and a warehouse supervisor in Long Beach whose attendance would be nice but not mandatory, you may want to coordinate timing with the vendors in China first to ensure a workable time period for the teleconference. For those secondary individuals who may not need to attend the call in person, consider sending them an MP3 recording of the call to listen to later.

Using international conferencing to communicate with vendors overseas

It is a great way to collaborate and build stronger working relationships. It is also an affordable choice that does not require any travel or specialized equipment. By spending some time planning your international conferencing agenda, you can guide the group through the meeting with focus and purpose.

In addition, a well-planned teleconference respects everyone’s time and keeps international conferencing costs within your desired budget. Make sure everyone is on the same page by using international conferencing regularly for overseas vendor collaboration and status.

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International Conferencing as a Sales Tool

With a toll free international conference call, each participant is assigned a toll free number to dial from their own country.

International Conferencing as a Sales Tool
International Conferencing as a Sales Tool

International Conferencing as a Sales Tool

Selling products and services to businesses located in other countries, by its nature, is more complicated than selling to a business located closer to home. While you may have the resources to travel occasionally or hire an in-country sales representative, there will be times when you need to pitch a new offer personally or intervene to close the deal from afar. Hopping on an airplane is an option, but it’s a costly one both in terms of money and time. International conferencing is a robust alternative that will save you both.

International conferencing is a teleconferencing service designed specifically to accommodate international participants. Access numbers to the teleconference are either local or toll free to each individual’s country, and call quality is exceptional despite extended geographic distance.

Determining When International Conferencing is Appropriate

Using international conferencing is easy for the moderator and participants alike, and it’s appropriate for any number of sales scenarios.

In general, consider using teleconferencing after you’ve warmed prospects up. In other words, it’s not the best choice for cold calling. Use other methods to warm the prospect up and schedule an extended sales consultation via international conferencing.

Teleconferencing is also suitable for introducing new products and services to existing customers, presenting progress reports, receiving feedback, resolving issues, and holding international focus groups.

You can also use global teleconferencing in conjunction with a face-to-face meeting with local sales rep from your company. For example, if your local representative needs support or additional information, holding international conferencing could be an excellent choice.

Who Needs to Be on the Call?

After determining that international conferencing is an appropriate choice, the next step is to determine who needs to be on the phone call. In the example above, your local sales rep, the customer, and you would come together in an international conference call. Do others need to be available? Are there other decision makers that need to be convinced? Are there other individuals from your company who can better explain your product’s unique features? Would it be helpful to have a translator present?

Take the time to determine exactly who should be present in advance as you will later need to schedule the teleconference around the participants’ hectic schedules. Because of time differences and other factors, some participants may not be able to attend the call live, so identify the key players who absolutely need to attend and those whose presence would be helpful but not essential.

The Importance of Toll Free Conference Call Access

When it comes to international conferencing, you have two choices as far as international access to the teleconference goes: toll free or local access numbers. In a sales environment, toll free access is crucial. Not only does a toll free number reassure your customers and prospects that they will not incur expensive international long distance charges, it looks professional. A toll free number shows that you’re serious about taking care of your customers. It also conveys the feeling that you do not want to inconvenience them.

In addition to providing a no-cost means of attending your international conference call, toll free access also makes it much easier for your international attendees to place the call. As you likely know, dialing conventions vary from one country to the next, making it confusing to place a call to another country. With a toll free international conference call, each participant is assigned a toll free number from their own countries. The number is immediately recognizable as being toll free and it’s familiar looking because it follows that country’s dialing conventions. Attendees do not need to think twice about dialing the call, nor will they need operator assistance.

Coordinating an International Conference Call

Once you have determined the purpose of the call, who needs to attend, and that you want to provide toll free access, it’s time to schedule the actual event. Use your list of participants that you identified earlier and write down which countries they will be calling from. Use a world time zone map or other tool to identify the time zones of each attendee.

Once you have the various countries and their time zones identified, look to see if there’s any particular time that you can schedule the call during business hours for all attendees. In many cases, this will be impossible due to geography, but in some cases it’s doable or nearly doable. Because the call involves a customer or prospect, make sure to schedule the call so that it is most convenient for the customer or prospect.

Ask your customer what time works best out of a short list of suggested times and then schedule the call around the customer’s choice. If this means that you need to set your alarm clock to wake you up at 3:00 AM in order to accommodate an international customer, then that’s what you’ll need to do. Schedule the call, distribute the call’s details to each participant (including time and date in local time, toll free access numbers, and PIN code), and prepare for the teleconference.

Using Your Plan’s Features

Finally, the time has arrived. Use the features of your international conferencing plan to enhance the call. For example, if some of the participants cannot make it to the teleconference, use the plan’s call recording feature to record the call for later.

Another useful feature to be aware of is muting. At the beginning of the call, instruct attendees how to mute and unmute their phones to eliminate distracting background noises. If someone forgets, you can manually mute a line using your live conference management tools. If you need technical help at any point during the teleconference, take advantage of operator assistance as needed. This allows you to return your attention to your customer while the operator assists you or other attendees.

International conference calls can quickly and easily bring together a diverse group for sales presentations, customer feedback, progress reports, focus groups, and other sales scenarios. It’s a cost-effective choice that saves both time and money while allowing you to communicate in a more personable manner.

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How to host Global Conference Calls

Host a Global Conference CallHosting Global Conference Calls

Whether you’re overseas and urgently need to speak with your team back at home or have associates scattered around the world, hosting an international conference call is a fast, affordable way to have a conversation with a group of two or more people.

However, making an international conference call isn’t as simple as making a traditional phone call. Rest assured, it’s still easy, especially if you have a reliable, no-contract-required international conference call plan.

Why Choose a No-Contract international conference call?

Conference calling plans typically come in two flavors: contract-based and no contract plans. With a contract-based plan, you must sign up for a specific time period and pay a monthly fee for a predetermined number of conference calling minutes. With a no contract plan, you are not locked into a plan or required to maintain the plan in any way; you simply pay as you go. If you only need to make one international conference call a year, a no contract plan allows for this without penalizing you. If you need to make a 100 international conference calls a month, you can do that too.

How to Initiate an International Conference Call

Once you have a calling plan, you can either preschedule your international conference call or hold an impromptu one. In either case, your attendees will need to be invited to the call. Start by scheduling the call in your international conference calling plan’s account management dashboard. Once scheduled, you can then email the call’s details to the people you’d like to attend.

These details will include:

  • The call’s date and time
  • The phone number to call in the guests country
  • The conference’s PIN number

Because of the global nature of the international teleconference, many of your attendees will be located in different countries. This brings a few challenges to overcome including: time zone issues and toll free access problems. Thus, you’ll need to address each.

For example, a 2:00pm call originating in Los Angeles will take place at 11:00pm in Rome. To further complicate matters, that same call will occur on a different date if you have participants located on the other side of the International Date Line. For example, it would be scheduled for 5:00am in Singapore. Not only is it important to be aware of these differences, you should provide attendees with the correct time and date for their local time.

The next issue to overcome is the actual phone number itself. If you plan on offering toll free access to the international conference call, you can’t simply give everyone the same American 800 number because that number won’t work internationally. Instead, each country has its own toll free numbers. Therefore, your callers in Rome will dial a different toll free number than your callers in Singapore.

The numbers used to access your teleconference ring into the service providers conference calling bridge. In order to connect your attendees into the correct “conference room,” a PIN or access code is used. Each attendee must tell the conference calling bridge which conference room they want to join; they do so by entering the PIN or access code assigned to your conference when you originally scheduled it.

If this sounds complicated, don’t worry. Your international conference calling plan handles most of this for you. You’ll be given a list of toll free numbers and PINs to share with participants.

Alternately, you could use the automated group dial-out feature to pre-program the phone numbers of your call’s attendees. When it’s time for your conference call to begin, the automated group dial-out tool will automatically call all of your participants and prompt them to join the teleconference.

Recording Your International Conference Call

Many conference call hosts choose to record their calls. Recording calls ensures that attendees have the opportunity to review the call later if desired, and it also allows absentee participants to listen in after the fact. In some cases, call recording is used for documentation purposes whereas in others, it’s used as a training or educational tool.

For example, if your international conference call is intended to provide your team with formal training, it makes sense to record the call and the reuse it later when new team members need to participate in the same training. This can free the facilitator of the training from having to conduct a second (or third, fourth, fifth, etc.,) training session covering the same information. It can also ensure consistency as all team members will hear the same message.

Hosting an international conference call is a great way to stay connected with a globally diverse group of people. Not only is it an affordable option that’s available on a no contract, pay-as-you-go basis, it’s easy to use. Extra features such as auto dial-out and MP3 recording make using an international conference call system even easier and more beneficial.

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International Conference Calling for Healthcare Professionals

Conference calls for Health Care Professionals
Conference calls for Health Care Professionals

International Conference Calling for Healthcare Professionals

International conference calling is an important tool for healthcare providers around the world. Whether you’re a hospital administrator, doctor, nurse, dentist, chiropractor, researcher, insurance professional, or lab technician, international conference calling allows for cost-effective global collaboration no matter where you, your patients and your colleagues happen to be located.

What is International Conference Calling?

International conference calling is conference calling for participants located around the globe. While your facility may have a sophisticated phone system with conference calling capabilities, international conference calling brings its own set of challenges that your hospital PBX is not likely set up to handle.

For example, if multiple participants are located in different countries, many will have difficulty dialing an international phone number. International long distance fees may also be a concern, potentially stopping some participants from calling. While you could give participants your toll free number, it won’t work internationally, eliminating that as an option.

With international conference calling, these issues are handled. First, you’ll need to sign up for an international conference calling plan with a telecommunications service provider. Don’t worry, international conference calling plans are available on a pay-as-you-go, no contract basis with low per minute rates to hundreds of countries.

Once you have a plan, you can set up international teleconferences easily using an online account management dashboard. Simply select a time and date and schedule the call. You’ll be given a list of international phone numbers to distribute to attendees. If you opt for a toll free international conference calling, each participant can dial a toll free access code that will work in their countries. No matter which international phone number each participant is given, all will be connected to the conference calling “bridge” where an auto attendant will prompt them to access the conference call’s PIN number (which will be provided to them with the phone number). From there, your international conference call begins.

Is Conference Calling Still Relevant in the Instant Messaging Age?

Conference calling is a tried-and-true technology that continues to be relevant despite instant messaging, email, and video chats. There’s no need for anyone to use a computer in order to participate in a teleconference. In some countries, your colleagues may have limited access to the Internet, making Web-based conferences impossible. In addition, if you intend to hold a conference with a large group, using conference calling is the easiest option that can accommodate a huge number of participants.

Ideas for Using International Conference Calls in the Healthcare Industry

There are many terrific potential uses for international conference calling in the healthcare industry. Below are just a few ideas of how you might be able to connect with colleagues in a teleconference:

Consult with specialists – Do you have a patient with an unusual condition? You could hold an international conference call with leading specialists from around the world and get your questions answered. Likewise, if one of your patients is overseas and suffers a medical emergency, you could consult with his or her doctors as needed using an international teleconference.

Hold training sessions or workshops – Teleconferences are a great way to exchange knowledge. Whether you need to discuss new medications, sales techniques, practice management concepts, or insurance billing, an international conference call could be an effective medium for bringing a diverse group together.

Collaborate with healthcare professionals around the world – Traveling to other countries and touring healthcare facilities has its value, but it also has its costs both in terms of time and money. By using international conference calling, you can continue learning about other countries’ healthcare systems in an intimate, but less expensive, setting.

Speak with other researchers – Compare notes with other researchers no matter where in the world they may be. Whether your colleagues are conducting field research or you want to reach out to other experts, holding an international conference call is a cost-effective way to connect with others.

Stay connected with your team when traveling beyond borders – Whether you’re in Haiti on a humanitarian mission or in Italy on vacation, international conference calls allow you to speak with two or more team members from around the world.

Not only can you use international conference calling for global collaboration in a variety of scenarios, you can also record your teleconferences for future reference or use. You could use MP3 recordings of the call to refresh your memory, have the recordings transcribed, or make them available to your colleagues as appropriate. Recordings are also useful for training-related conferences because everyone can hear the same material both now and in the future.

Using an international conference call is easy, cost-effective, and beneficial to healthcare professionals who need to communicate with others around the world. How will you put international conference calling to good use?

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How to Keep Your International Conference Call on Track

Keep Conference Calls on Track
Keep Conference Calls on Track

How to Keep Your International Conference Call on Track

When it comes to international conference calling, your calls can easily run over your allotted time. Not only can individual speakers dominate the conversation or send the conversation off track, questions and answers sessions at the end of a global collaboration call can quickly gobble up valuable conference calling time.

While you certainly want to answer everyone’s questions, international conference calls that continue beyond the scheduled timeframe can quickly become more expensive than planned for. After all, you pay per participant, per minute.

In addition, participants may be reluctant to join future international conference calls based on fears that their time won’t be respected. Keeping your budget intact and your participants willing to join you in the future requires managing your international conference call to keep it on track.

Create a Global Collaboration Agenda

In order to stay on track, you will need a solid plan for the international conference call. The best approach is to create a global collaboration agenda and map out every topic you want to discuss. Your agenda could be as formal or informal as you need it to be.

For example, you may prefer to keep it simple by listing topics of discussions and assigning time limits to each one such as the following:

• Introductions / icebreakers – five minutes
• Discuss sales figures for quarter 1 − ten minutes
• Brainstorm ideas for increasing sales – ten minutes
• Training opportunities – five minutes
• Company news – five minutes
• Questions and answers – ten minutes

If you prefer more details, your global collaboration agenda could include the names of individual speakers, descriptions, and exact times such as the following:

8:00am – Introductions / icebreakers: Nancy introduces herself and asks each participant, one by one, to do the same.

8:05am – Discuss sales figures for quarter 1: Bob presents first quarter sales figures for the company as a whole. Recognizes Region 2 for top sales performance.

8:15am – Brainstorm ideas for increasing sales: Nancy guides the team through brainstorming session.

8:25am – Training opportunities: John from HR introduces new online learning portal and recommends the social media selling course for each regional manager.

8:30am – Company news: Nancy discusses pending acquisition, reassures team that it’s a beneficial move that brings more opportunities for personal growth.

8:35am – Questions and answers: Nancy and Bob to field questions.

8:45am – international conference call ends.

No matter how detailed you prefer to make your international conference calling agenda, the  most important task is to identify the topics and allot sufficient time for each one.

Share Your Agenda with Participants

Agendas are valuable planning tools for international conference call moderators. However, they’re also useful for your call’s participants. If, in the example above, Nancy were to keep her agenda to herself, Bob and John might not realize that they’re expected to discuss first quarter sales results and training opportunities.

In fact, they’ll likely arrive unprepared because it’s impossible to read Nancy’s mind. Bob may need to excuse himself for a few minutes to find, download, and briefly analyze the latest sales figures. Meanwhile, John, who’s on the spot and unprepared, may discuss the wrong training program.

By sharing her agenda with Bob and John, Nancy is taking another proactive step to ensure that the global collaboration call moves efficiently from one topic to the next and that the exact topics she wants to address are discussed.

In addition to sharing the conference’s agenda with other speakers, consider sharing it with all participants in advance. This gives them a chance to prepare as well, and it shows them how their conference call time will be spent.

Use a Timer during the Conference Call

Use either a stopwatch or a timer during the conference call to ensure that each topic stays within its allotted time period. As the call’s moderator, you should take an active role in managing the call. For example, Nancy might prompt Bob that he has two minutes left to wrap up his presentation by saying, “Bob, this is fascinating.

You have about two minutes left. Would you mind telling us which region had the most sales this quarter and how other regions might emulate their success?”

Allow for Questions and Answers

Scheduling time for questions and answers at the end of an international conference call provides participants with the opportunity to ask questions. It also allows you to revisit topics that may not have had enough time to explore thoroughly earlier.

Make sure to schedule a Q&A session into each international conference call. Doing so gives you a little extra padding should your call run longer than expected. At the same time, if there are no questions, or if the Q&A session ends early, you can release participants from the call a few minutes early. No one appreciates a meeting that runs long, but most everyone appreciates getting out early.

Worldwide Conference Call details

Virtual Team Collaboration with an International Conference Call

Virtual Team Collaboration
Virtual Team Collaboration

Virtual Team Collaboration with an International Conference Call

As part of a virtual team, you may be called upon to work with people scattered across a wide geographic area. When that area crosses international borders, simple phone calls suddenly become more complicated. Hosting an international conference call is one way to facilitate global collaboration amongst your globally diverse team. Here’s a quick look at how you can use international conference calling without spending a fortune.

  • Start by signing up for an international conference calling plan. These plans are available on a no-contract, pay-as-you-go basis. By choosing a no-contract plan, you have the flexibility you need without getting locked into a yearly service that you may or may not need.
  • Schedule an international conference call. You can schedule your calls in advance or hold an impromptu international conference call if desired. Once your call is scheduled, you’ll need to let your virtual team members know which phone number to call in order to join the conference. With an international conference call, participants receive a local or toll free number to call that is specific to their countries. This addresses several concerns your team members may have about joining an international conference call. For example, the phone number will be local to each individual; no one needs an operator to help them connect to your call. In addition, your team members won’t need to worry about incurring expensive international long distance charges on their personal phones (the host of a toll free international conference call call typically pays for the call).
  • Hold the international conference call. At the appointed time, everyone dials their assigned phone number, enters an access code, and collaborates. Optionally, you can set up the system to automatically dial participants. Moderator dial out features are useful in several ways. For example, not only can you preprogram participants’ phone numbers into the system and initiate automatic dial out, you can also dial some participants individually in order to take advantage of lower per minute calling rates. This simple act could save you nearly 20 cents per minute depending on the countries involved. Moderator dial out also helps to ensure that no one forgets about the call.

In addition to selecting an international conference calling plan on a no-contract, pay-as-you-go basis, you can reduce your global collaboration costs by actively managing your conference. Use the tips below to squeeze the most value out of each international conference call you host.

1 Create and follow an agenda. Agendas are a terrific time management tool that help keep meetings and teleconferences on track. Using an agenda forces you to determine what to discuss and how long to discuss it. In order for an agenda to keep a teleconference from going over its time limit, you must actively follow it. Use a stopwatch, clock, or timer to time each segment of your international conference call. When the time limit is reached, move to the next agenda item. Leave a few minutes at the end of the teleconference for questions or to further discuss items that ran out of time.

2 Invite the right people. Because you pay for an international conference call per minute, per participant, you’ll want to make sure that you’re inviting the right people to attend. While your virtual team may consist of 20 members, is it necessary for the entire team to join every conference call you hold? For example, if you need to hold a conference call to brainstorm ideas for your company blog, your accountant, office manager, and legal advisor may not need to attend.

3 Record your teleconferences. If you decide that it’s not necessary for every team member to join your live international conference call, consider recording the call and making it available to the other team members to listen to at their leisure. Call recordings are also useful for participants who missed the live call or who live in time zones where live attendance would have been impractical.

4 Ask participants to use landlines rather than mobile phones. Calling rates are generally less expensive for traditional landlines than they are from mobile phones. If your virtual team is on a budget, asking participants to call from a landline instead of a cell phone is one way to reduce your call’s cost. You can check rates online to see which countries have the largest gap between landline and mobile phone rates.

Global collaboration using an international conference call is an affordable way for virtual teams to communicate. Affordable, no-contract plans are available loaded with desirable conferencing features including moderator dial out and MP3 call recording. How will your virtual team put international conference call to good use?

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Using an International Conference Call – Global Collaboration Made Easy

Global Conference Calling
Global Conference Calling

Using an International Conference Call – Global Collaboration Made Easy

Do you need to brainstorm ideas, go over project work, or introduce new products to a group of two or more people around the world? With the help of a low-cost international conference call, global collaboration is a simple matter of dialing a local or toll free number, entering an access code, and speaking with your collaborators.

Not sure you need an international conference call for global collaboration thanks to your phone system’s conference calling feature? While many corporate phone systems have complex PBX systems loaded with calling features, including conferencing, challenges arise when your collaborators are located around the world. For example, if your main phone number is an American 800 number, your collaborators located outside of North America won’t be able to connect using that 800 number. Sure, you could give them the standard local phone number to dial, but it will be unconventional looking to international callers accustomed to their own country’s dialing conventions. Plus, your callers will likely be concerned about the potential long distance costs they’re likely to incur.

How International Conference Calling Works

With an international conference call – global collaboration plan, you can overcome these challenges. With an international conference call, each country involved in the call a unique phone number for participants to dial into the conference. For example, your participants located in Italy will dial either a local Italian phone number or a toll free number for Italy while your participants in India will dial an Indian local phone number or toll free number for India. Local or toll free access depends on how you set up your international conference call.

Global collaboration using local numbers is one option. However, participants could still incur toll charges when dialing a local phone number in their country. For example, in a large city such as Los Angeles, dozens of calling regions exist as do multiple area codes. Simply ordering a Los Angeles phone number doesn’t guarantee that it will be local to your Los Angeles participants. With that in mind, most businesses opt for toll free international conference call – global collaboration plans.

There are hundreds of toll free access numbers to countries around the world. If your international conference call – global collaboration plan does not have a toll free number for one of your collaborator’s countries, an easy workaround is available: moderator dial out. Moderator dial out allows you to dial a given participant, or group of participants, directly. Their phones ring and they are connected to the international conference call. Global collaboration really is as easy as that!

Estimating Your international conference call Costs

As the host of the international conference call, global collaboration costs are billed to your account. In general, you will incur costs on a per participant, per minute basis. Per minute rates vary based on the country of each participant. For example, rates for callers located in the United States will be much lower than for callers located in the Philippines. Another factor that influences the rate charged for a given participant is whether or not the caller dialed from a mobile phone or landline as calling costs for the different phone types can vary.

You can look up international conference call calling rates to get a better idea of how much you will pay per minute for each caller based on the caller’s country. From there, you can estimate the cost of your overseas conference call if desired.

The cost of your international conference call is far less expensive than holding a face-to-face meeting. Holding an international conference call meeting is much easier, too. With a low-cost international conferencing plan, you can collaborate with others as needed with minimal hassles and dramatically lower costs.

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Tips for Better Communication during an International Conference Call

Conference Call Tips for the Moderator
Conference Call Tips

International collaboration using a conference call is a cost effective choice that allows you to accomplish many tasks without the high cost of travel. For example, you can negotiate deals, conduct training, conduct creative brainstorming sessions, get feedback, conduct research, and much more with an international conference call. Just about anything you can do face-to-face, you can do on a teleconference. However, with audio-only conference calls, you may miss non-verbal cues such as facial expressions. In addition, not all callers will recognize one another’s voices. Use these tips to enhance communications during an international conference call.

  • Ask each participant to announce their names and departments before speaking – While you may recognize Glen from accounting’s voice, other participants might not. Asking each participant to quickly say their name and department or job role before they speak helps give context to their comments.
  • Use active listening techniques – Some participants may be difficult to hear or understand for any number of reasons. As the moderator of the international conference call, part of your job is to ensure that everyone is heard and understood. If the sound is muffled or a person’s accent heavy, it’s helpful to repeat what you believe was said and ask the speaker to confirm. For example, you might say, “Barbara from our San Diego logistics office just said our freight contract expires in two weeks. Did I hear that correctly Barbara?”
  • Allow a few minutes for questions and answers at the end – At the end of the international conference call, open up the meeting for questions and answers. As you wrap up the call, thank participants. You might even leave the lines unmuted for a few minutes, allowing for a little friendly banter which builds a sense of camaraderie.

Many international conference calls suffer needlessly because of telephone system quality issues. Many communications problems can be avoided by choosing an international conference calling plan known for quality connections.

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Engaging International Conference Call Attendees

International Conference Call Hosting
International Conference Call Hosting

Engaging International Conference Call Attendees

Holding an international conference call can be a one-to-many experience with the call’s host doing most of the talking or it can be much more collaborative. In either case, the success of the call often relies on how engaged attendees are. For example: Is the content relevant to them? Is the pace appropriate? And do attendees have the opportunity to share their thoughts or ask questions? Use the tips below to create a more engaging international conference call:

  • Prepare all participants – Everyone should understand the purpose of the call as well as their individual roles. Create and share the conference call’s agenda in advance so that all participants can prepare accordingly. If you expect individuals to contribute, let them know so that they understand your expectations and can arrive prepared. For example, if you expect the graphic designer to share three concepts during the call, the designer may want to upload PDF files of the design to a file-sharing site in advance so that the files are readily available to call participants during the teleconference.
  • Acknowledge attendees throughout the teleconference – You certainly don’t want to feel as though you are talking to an empty room; and your attendees don’t want to feel as though they’re not present. One way to avoid this is to use the interactive chat feature included in your international conferencing account. For example, you might encourage attendees to enter their questions in the chat box. If you do, have a co-moderator monitor the chat. Your co-moderator may be able to answer some of the questions in real time. Likewise, the most relevant questions can be selected to discuss during the Q&A section.
  • Respect everyone’s time – Finally, a bored audience is a disengaged audience. Keep your teleconference on task and relevant. Stick to its agenda and end the call on time – if not earlier if you’ve accomplished everything earlier than expected.

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How Do Companies Use International Conference Calling

International Conference Call Sales Tool
Conference Call Sales Tool

How Do Companies Use International Conference Calling?

Companies use international conference calls for all kinds of purposes. For some, the international conference call is a cheap way to keep virtual teams connected. For others, teleconferences are a convenient way to share ideas with a global audience. Some sales professionals use conference calls to pitch their products or negotiate deals. The possibilities are endless. Below are a few ways that businesses of all types have used international conferencing:

  • School is in session – Virtual schools, charter schools, colleges, and other educational institutions often use teleconferences as part of their distance learning programs. For example, students may be required to attend weekly teleconferences where they’ll be able to hear the instructor’s lecture, get their assignments for the week, and have the opportunity to ask questions. Schools also use international conference calling for administrative purposes such as staff meetings and as alternatives to in-person meetings.
  • Legal proceedings – Court reporters, lawyers, and litigation support services firms often use international conference calling to conduct some legal proceedings. Not only does doing so eliminate travel, it’s possible to record conference calls and the calling plan can create an accurate record of who was present during the call.
  • Board meetings – From charitable organizations to Fortune 500 companies, many businesses use international conference calls to hold virtual board meetings with attendees scattered around the world. This saves on travel expenses while accomplishing the agenda items.
  • Mentoring and coaching – Many businesses and entrepreneurs use teleconferences to mentor and coach others. One of the benefits of using an international conference call to host a mentoring or coaching session involves recording the call for later use. Not only can the original attendees benefit from the session, future ones can listen to the call and receive the same information.

These are but a few of the many ways that businesses use international conferencing. How will you use your international conference calling plan?

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Conference Calling and the Virtual Team

Virtual International Conference Team
Virtual Conference Team

Conference Calling and the Virtual Team

Virtual teams are made up of team members who typically work independently of one another. Some team members may work from home while others might work in various branch offices. Some may even belong to other companies. For example, a virtual team of volunteers coordinating a charity even may have team members from multiple organizations.

While face-to-face team or committee meetings are often held, they can also be impractical especially if the team is scattered across a large geographic distance. To solve this problem and facilitate communication, many virtual teams use international conference calling.

With conference calling, each person simply dials a designated phone number, enters an access code, and begins collaborating. No one needs to travel, and the international conference call can be as long or short as necessary. In addition to these obvious benefits, conference calling also allows for:

  • Call recording – By recording the call, individuals can go back and listen to it as needed. In addition, the call recording can be used as “meeting minutes” or be transcribed. Absent team members can listen to the call after the fact. Superiors and colleagues could also be invited to listen to the call after if appropriate.
  • Collaboration and team building – While email solves many communications challenges, it doesn’t necessarily build camaraderie. By holding regular conference calls, virtual team members can get to know each other on a more personal basis.
  • Anytime, anywhere conferences – With a pay-as-you-go teleconferencing plan, you can hold virtual team meetings anytime, day or night. There’s no need to preschedule your conference, allowing you to hold impromptu conference calls as needed.

Virtual team members often have conflicting work schedules, especially when working across multiple time zones. While some international conference calls may require some participants to attend at odd hours, they can do so from their homes or other remote locations. There’s no need to dress up, either.

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Top Four International Conferencing Features

Four Most Important Features
Four Most Important Features

Top Four International Conferencing Features

If you have an international conferencing plan, you also have a host of features that you may or may not know about. The following four conferencing features are among the most useful. Use them to control the cost of your international teleconference, find out who is in attendance, record your conference for later use, and eliminate background noise.

  • Moderator Dial-out – Moderator dial-out allows you to dial participants directly rather than requiring them to dial into the international conference call. While you may not want to do this for every single attendee, it makes sense to do it for some. For example, dial-out rates are typically less expensive than toll free charges. If a participant lives in an expensive country, it could make sense to dial that participant directly. You can even preschedule dial-out and let the international conferencing plan dial a group of attendees simultaneously.
  • MP3 Call Recording – Recording your teleconference provides you with options later on. For example, you can share your MP3 recording with participants who were unable to attend the live call or who want to re-listen to the call. You could even repurpose the audio by using it as the basis of a podcast or informational product.
  • Attendance Tracking – Most international conferencing dashboards provide you with a real-time display of the conference call – including a list of attendees. Use this feature to document attendance.
  • Background Noise Control – Did you know that you can mute noisy callers? In some cases, you may want only one line open, the line of the person currently speaking. In others, you may want everyone’s line open so that the entire team can brainstorm ideas. While you can instruct everyone of how to mute and unmute their phones as needed, inevitably someone will forget. When this happens, distracting background noises such as computer chimes, ringing telephones, nearby chitchat, and even barking dogs disrupt the conference. The responsible caller may be unaware of the problem (or may even have stepped away from the phone). As the moderator, you can identify the source of the noise and mute it directly from your account dashboard.

These international conferencing features are easy to use, and they deliver important benefits. Make sure you know how to use them before your next international conference call.

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Tips for Managing Local Virtual Numbers

Managing Virtual Numbers
Managing Virtual Numbers

Tips for Managing Local Virtual Numbers

Many business owners quickly see the benefit of their local virtual numbers and promptly order additional virtual numbers for other locales. After all, local virtual phone numbers allow you to establish local presences around the world without requiring office space, additional staff members, and other business expenses. However, as your virtual phone presence grows, it becomes more difficult to manage. Use these tips to keep track of your local virtual numbers.

  • Use one provider – The more providers you have, the more complicated it becomes. Wouldn’t you rather deal with one bill each month rather than dozens? In addition to consolidating billing by using a single provider, all of your local virtual phone numbers can be listed and managed under one account. If you need to change a ring-to number, simply log into your main account, choose the local virtual phone number that you need to change, and edit as needed.
  • Use a spreadsheet or database program – This isn’t necessary when you have just a few virtual numbers to manage but can be helpful as your list grows. For example, you may want to record the following details for each local virtual number you have:
  • Local virtual phone number
  • City and/or country that the number is local to
  • Its ring-to number
  • Its purpose (localization, internal communications, hotline, etc.)
  • Where it is advertised (phone book, website, company trucks, etc.)
  • Local language and customs (will you need translators to interpret messages or bilingual staff to answer these calls?)
  • Expected end of life (some virtual phone numbers are ordered for temporary purposes while others are intended for the long term)
  • Track performance – Just as you measure the performance of other areas of your business, it’s smart to track the performance of your virtual phone numbers. Are customers calling your local virtual phone number? If not, do they know it exists? If so, are these calls resulting in sales?

Using one provider makes managing local virtual numbers much easier. By tracking important details in a spreadsheet or database program, you can quickly find relevant information should you later make changes to the number. For example, if you cancel a local virtual number, you should also cancel its associated advertisements. Tracking performance allows you to get a better sense of how well your local virtual numbers are performing so that you can adjust your approach or replicate its success with a new local phone number.

View Virtual Number features

How to Schedule an International Conference Call

Conference Call Schedule
Conference Call Schedule

After signing up for an international conference call plan, you have access to a valuable communications tool that can bring your entire global team together. While most conference calling services are generally easy to use, time differences can make scheduling a conference call challenging. Below are a few tips to help you schedule a global teleconference that accommodates most of your team.

  • Identify all countries and states/provinces involved in the international conference call. Use either an Excel spreadsheet or a piece of paper to list each country that will be involved in your call. This list may be overwhelming at first, especially if you have a lot of countries involved. If you have participants from large countries such as the United States or Canada, your list will need to be broken down further into states and provinces to accommodate different time zones. At this point, don’t worry about the size of your list; it will become more manageable as you break it down into time zones.
  • Use a world time zone map. GreenwichMeanTime.com has a world time zone map that you can print. Use a highlighter and mark each country. Not only will you be able to see which time zones your callers are in, you may also see clusters of callers in the same general time zone. This will make it easier to choose a time that’s most convenient for the majority of participants. Look for clusters that span an eight-hour time period as you may be able to schedule a call that occurs during business hours for all of those countries.
  • Choose a convenient time of day for the majority of your participants. While your company may be based in New York, if the bulk of your international conference call participants are located in Naples, Italy, it may be best to schedule your call during normal business hours in Naples. Note that there’s a five-hour time difference between New York and Naples. This means that you could schedule an international conference call that takes place during normal business hours for both countries. In this example, a call that takes place at 9:00 AM New York time would be convenient for your Naples participants because it would be 2:00 PM local time for them.

Finally, use MP3 recording to record your international conference call so that participants who cannot participate have the option to listen in after the fact.

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Tips to Lower the Cost of your International Conference Call

International Conference Calling Costs
International Conference Calling Costs

Tips to Lower the Cost of Your Next International Conference Call

To frame this post correctly, these are tips about reducing costs on professional, high quality, business class, full service, excellent line clarity, toll-free international conference calling. Versus a conference call service which provides an experience similar to when you were a kid and created your own walkie-talkie system made out of two cans and a string 🙂

Being able to say “That went well” after your overseas conference call. Isn’t that the goal?

Instead of: “people were cut off and we couldn’t hear some participants, and some couldn’t dial-in, the call sounded muffled, voices were fragmented. My boss was not happy“.

No joke, this is what we hear from customers that have tried many international conferencing alternatives but always come back to wanting their call experience to be great for everyone on the call as opposed to having numerous quality issues too lengthy to go into here.  Most of the problematic conferencing services claim to be free.

Hosting an international conference call is a cost-effective choice for communicating with colleagues, employees, customers, vendors, suppliers, partners, and even loved ones from around the world. Not only can the entire group discuss important matters using a low-cost international conference call, several options are available to further reduce the cost of your next call. Use these tips to plan and execute your next global teleconference.

  • Identify the countries with the most expensive international conference calling rates – International conference calling Toll-Free access rates vary dramatically by country. For example, you’ll pay about 10 times more per minute for a caller in the Philippines than you will for callers in Canada. If your international conference call is just a few minutes long, this may not be a big factor; however, if your call lasts an hour, you’ll pay nearly $50 for each caller from the Philippines and about $3 for each caller from Canada for that 60 minute call.
  • Use moderator dial-out for callers with expensive calling rates – Moderator dial-out is a feature that you can use to take advantage of lower per minute rates. With this option, the chairperson dials callers in expensive countries rather than requiring them to dial into the international conference call. Participants are still able to participate in the global teleconference, but your costs will be significantly lower. For example, you could slash your per minute rate for callers from the Philippines by about 70 percent.
  • Dial-out works for any country.  Country rates are usually lower than toll-free number access using dial-out.  The host has no constraints as to what country the participant is located in.   Only the participant’s overseas phone number is needed for the chairperson to dial-out to the attendee and place him/her into the call.  Dial-out rates depend on the country. You should compare dial-out rates to toll-free access rates.
  • Encourage mobile participation – While your current international conference calling plan most likely works on mobile phones, VoIP phones, and landlines alike, callers using mobile phones to dial into your international conference call may be subject to excessively high mobile calling rates. If you are hosting the call and offering toll free access to participants, encourage participants to dial from landline phones if at all possible.  Use your best judgment on this one as you may not want to impose on VIPs and potential customers. That said, if you have employees sitting at a desk with both a landline and a mobile phone, it makes sense to ask them to use the landline.

In order to slash the cost of your next international conference call, focus on the participants that are most likely to incur the highest costs. Use Leader dial-out to reduce your per minute rates for participants from expensive countries.

View details about international conference calling….

An In-depth Look At Conference Calling

conf-call
An in-depth look at conference calling

Any successful business will usually agree that communication is crucial to the attainment of business goals and objectives especially for business entities that are global.

Advancement in technology has led to the development of conference call features that enables collaborative meetings over the phone without requiring physically being together in a boardroom.

However, it is recommended to plan well for this event so as to ensure that everything takes place as planned.

Below are some tips on how to plan a conference call like a professional.

Set the date and time:

Just like face-to-face meetings, you have so set a date and time that you intend to hold the meeting. If some of the participants are located in different time zones, ensure that you facter in their local time so as to avoid any conveniences. Bottom line is, the set date and time should be convenient for all the participants, if possible.

Communicate with the attendees:

It is important to send an agenda and communicate it all the associates so as to keep them informed on the specific topics that will be discussed during the meeting. This will help them prepare and save time. In addition, it will provide them with all the relevant information such as dialing instructions as well as Pin Numbers so as to ensure that the meeting takes place smoothly. In addition, you should develop a criterion that will be used to ask and answer questions so as to foster attainment of the meeting objectives.

The Agenda:

The agenda should encompass all the topics to be discussed. Be sure to allocate enough time to each task so as to achieve the expected results. Remember to send the final agenda document to all the members to avoid any confusing during the meeting.

You may want to contact the attendees just to be sure that they received the agenda.

Let us proceed and look at some of the major benefits that can be derived from this form of communication.

Economics:

Conference calls are more economical on time and money since participants do not have to travel to the designated conference area. Instead, all they need to do is ensure that their telephone line or internet connection is working. This in turn helps businesses save thousands of dollars that could have would have been spent on housing and transport costs.

Convenience:

Most conferences calling services can be accessed from virtually all online platforms. Hence, businesses are able to still hold meetings and carry on with their daily business activities conveniently. In addition, it is possible to re-organize or re-schedule the meetings in case of any unforeseen occurrence easily. It is also important to note that this mode of communication is not prone to various problems such as traffic jams, flight delays and a long list of other items associated with meetings in another city or country.

Secure:

Virtually all businesses have strict confidentiality rules. These calls are totally safe and secure since only the participants have access to the system. All attendees will have their caller ID’s visible to the host who uses the free online roster feature.

Conference call is indeed the most convenient and modern way of holding corporate meetings especially the international conference call.

We offer the best conference call services at very affordable rates. In order to meet diverse client needs, we have tailored out services into different packages hence no matter your specific needs we have a solution for you.

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The Conference Call Bringing Your Business into the 21st Century

Making your mark

In today’s world, it seems as though business is only getting bigger and a lot more complicated. As the world of communication technology continues to expand on a global basis, it can be easy to get lost in the mix, not knowing exactly what you need to help your business thrive in the long run. With the advancement of technology, terms like “foreign country” seem to not really apply anymore, as it is become a lot easier for people to communicate with each other on a worldwide basis. And because of this, it is very important for your business to make sure that it is on the top of its game, that way you can securely make your mark on the 21st century.

THE INTERNET HAS BROUGHT US TOGETHER

If there is one thing that the Internet has done for us, it has brought us the ability to communicate our business needs no matter where a person may be. Whether we are making a sales pitch to a potential client in China, or if we are discussing investor relations with co-workers in India, or even if we’re having a general board meeting with executives in Canada, the Internet has made it extremely easy to make this type of communication possible. Because of the Internet, the world of the conference call has forever been changed.

POPULARITY IS GROWING

Ever since the Internet allowed for such communication, the idea of a conference call has grown dramatically, oftentimes being one of the official forms of communications between business executives. Whether it through a networking program or a video conference calling software, the popularity of organizing a meeting of this type has grown a lot over the past couple years and it will only continue to grow as technology continues to improve.

MOVING PAST CHAT ROOMS AND MESSAGE BOARDS

In our world today, group communication through message boards and chat rooms are just not good enough. If you are communicating through a message board, things may seem a little bit too impersonal, things do not happen in real time, and you will most likely be reading through a lot more useless information than you need to read through. When it comes to chat rooms, things can get a little too jumbled and a little too chatty. Yes, you are communicating with each other in real time, so it is a lot better than a message board, but again, it does not feature any of the personalization and customization that a conference call provides.

VOICE INFLECTIONS

With conference calls, you will be able to understand and use voice inflections. Voice inflections are very important in the world of communication because it helps you understand what someone else is saying and how they are feeling about the given topic. Chat rooms and message boards or any other type of typing interface will not allow you the luxury of doing that. When you are talking to someone, you will want to have a full understanding of their various range of emotions, making it easy for you to reply in a manner that fits the situation.

RELATIONAL VERSUS INFORMATIONAL

Message boards and chat rooms are typically informational, whereas a conference call capitalizes on how relational communication can be. In fact, the informational and relational difference between these forms of communication is the biggest difference you will ever see in the world of communication. If you are looking to make a sale, you will make a sale by forming a relationship with a customer, not by simply relaying information.

In another example of the difference, you cannot simply encourage your employees by simply relaying information to them. You can encourage and motivate your employees by building relations with them, something that chat rooms and message boards cannot do.

OTHER IMPORTANT BENEFITS OF THE CONFERENCE CALL

  1. The sound quality is exceptionally high, meaning that you will hear everything that you need to hear with no confusion or misunderstandings.
  2. You will be able to record your meetings easily for future reference. Many conference call providers allow for you to playback all conversations in a matter of minutes.
  3. Having a great conference call service will save you a lot of money and possibly make you a lot money as well. You should never sacrifice good communication because of money. There are plenty of pricing options available for you to consider.

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Continue reading “The Conference Call Bringing Your Business into the 21st Century”

Get your Global Virtual Number for Easy Calling

Worldwide Virtual Numbers + International Conference Calls
Worldwide Virtual Numbers + International Conference Calling

Are you working within a Multinational Company looking for a feasible mode of communication that is not only feature rich but is also cost effective?

Is International conference calling with clients in diverse geographic locations a need of your business?

If any of your answers are yes then we shall discuss how you can make use of Global Virtual numbers that are meant for small, medium and large scale businesses.  As a complement to international call forwarding, you can have a business class international conference call collaboration tool to round out your global communication arsenal.

Since effective communication is the need of every business, it becomes vital to have proper communication channels. With a Global Virtual Number, distances do not really matter. This all shrinks the globe and makes all geographic locations that much more accessible.

To any of the domestic or international plans available for calling; the feature for Virtual Phone Number can be added easily by making a visit to the online account.

It is here, where you need to select the area code that are available in the country where you desire to own a virtual phone line.

The prices of the Virtual Phone Number are quite reasonable and they can be seen as the perfect solution for communication needs of every business.

There are many companies that are offering the service of cheap Global Virtual Number. Among those Aitelephone is undoubtedly a brand name. This is a recognized option through which you can draw the benefit of low rates and high quality.

There are calling plans from which you can see one that matches with your current requirements. So what are you waiting for? Solve the problem of communication today by joining hands with Aitelephone.

International Conference Call – The green alternative to connect worldwide

It is the most beneficial strategy for international collaboration and connecting with your associates and customers overseas.

International Conference CallsDue to the growth of business globalization, advancements have taken place in the last decade which have provided a uniform platform for clients and businesses to converse and collaborate internationally without in-person meetings.

Those days are history when it was beyond imagination to think of such a medium that could connect a group of associates or customers to an international meeting over the phone or Internet.

This is a reality which has revolutionized the international telecommunication sector. Today telecommunication services have become so advanced that they can cater to every possible requirement of businesses around the world. And this is the reason why more and more businesses are opting for these services because not only are these services a handy way of connecting with clients but also the savings are significant especially when compared to money that would otherwise be spent on hotel rooms, travel and a hist of other expenses involved to get an international group of people together.  Now it can be done through technology at a fraction of the cost and disruption.

When it comes to conference call service it would not be wrong to say that these services have penetrated so deeply into the business world that it would be practically impossible for most of the current users to even think of carrying out their business operation without using these services.

Businesses have gone global and they are constantly searching for new methods to collaborate and improve their relationships with customers (existing or potential).

Businesses frequently use international conference call services to conduct meeting with their clients worldwide. The reason why conference call services have been in much demand in the recent years is due to the following facts:

  • They curb the need for businesses to travel around the world to conduct meetings with their clients or associates.
  • The physical presence of the attendees is not required with international conference call services.
  • There is no disruption of the daily business activity of the attendees because they do not need to leave their home base office for traveling to attend a meeting.
  • No downtime for any participants, they connect by phone.
  • Utilizing international Toll Free access numbers available in scores of countries provides phone access at no cost to the participants.
  • With these services the participants can not only see each other but can also share files, documents and presentations while discussing business strategies.
  • Conference calling is extremely cost effective, convenient for all involved and is the green alternative to in-person physical meetings whether domestic or international.

These are just some of the advantages that come along with conference call services but there are numerous additional benefits included with conferencing services.

It is the most beneficial strategy for international collaboration and connecting with your associates and customers overseas.

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How to host international conference calls

How to Host International Conference Calls
How to Host International Conference Calls

International Conference Call are easy to host utilizing international Toll Free access numbers.

Hosting an international conference calls is a very powerful tool for conversing with a group, large or small, located in disparate locations around the world.

While conducting an international teleconference call there are many issues which a wise facilitator takes into consideration. On the other hand, the rewards generated through it are likely to be greater. This is because hosting internationally gives exposure to your business worldwide and in many cases will replace business travel and the associated expenses.

Below are few important tips to host an international teleconference call:

1. Having a hosting service that caters to international customers is very important, this might not seem very important but in reality it is. It helps to ensure that all participants will have a good experience.

2. Know the location of your attendees: It is very important while hosting conference calls internationally. Suppose you have clients in New York USA, Italy, South Africa and Sydney Australia. Obviously there are time zone issues to work out with your participants.  So, it is important to know about the location of clients to set up your conference call date and time accordingly.

3. Provide recording service: No doubt there are number of issues which are related to your country or your client’s country when it comes to international conference calling. The issues may be regarding reliability or security etc. The solution for this problem is that you must always provide recording facilities. This will give you good benefits. Suppose if any participant was not able to take part in the call.  If the call was recorded, you can provide them the recorded MP3 copy.

So, if you plan to host international conference calls keep the things in mind.