As corporations continue to shine a spotlight on remote working, cross site communications and room automation, 20% of meeting room budgets are now being spent on collaborative technologies. That's according to a recently-published end user research project carried out by Futuresource Consulting across the UK, USA, Germany and France.
The comprehensive program of research, initiated earlier this year with over 2,500 end users and decision makers, builds on Futuresource's previous studies in this area and reveals a general upward trend for collaboration technologies in meeting rooms.
"This rising demand for collaboration technologies is making itself heard across all territories," says Anthony Brennan, Research Analyst at Futuresource Consulting. "On average, we're seeing around 20% of total meeting room AV spend allocated to collaboration, although there are marked geographic differences and the size of the meeting room also has an impact on share of spend.
"With 11% of employees working from home at least three days a week – up three percentage points on the last time we ran this research – the role of the meeting room continues to change. More of us are wirelessly sharing content to a web conferencing platform or harnessing interactive technologies to get our point across, and the usage is only going to increase."
There are close to 11 million meeting rooms across Western Europe and North America alone, representing a significant opportunity for those technology vendors who are able to develop and maintain a foothold in the marketplace.
"As the landscape continues to broaden, companies will increasingly demand a multitude of features from their meeting room tech," adds Brennan. "The winners will be the technology providers who can deliver engaging, flexible solutions that work seamlessly and encourage collaborative working without getting in the way or adding extra layers of complexity.
"In amongst the mix of interaction, collaboration, productivity and innovation, there's a cosy, big money position for the vendor who can offer a full meeting room solution that covers all the needs of companies across different meeting room sizes."
Display technologies still take the largest slice of the meeting room budget, but their share is reducing. This is particularly true of large meeting rooms, where over 60% of meeting room AV spend is allocated to non-display technologies. However, the importance of displays should not be discounted, display vendors are fighting back, producing team collaboration display products to recapture some of that diverted spend.
"The meeting room landscape has evolved rapidly in recent years," says Brennan. "The market is demanding and adopting a broader spectrum of feature sets and technologies than ever before."
This change in adoption and use case has brought an increasing number of solution providers from different parts of the AV/IT market into the meeting room and we are seeing a range of collaborative technologies including interactive displays, video conferencing, and wireless presentation solutions growing in significance, along with penetration rates.
"There's a potential landgrab developing here, with a range of new opportunities that savvy, switched-on vendors can exploit."
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