Technology Tools that can Improve Communication with Employees Working Remotely

Oct 30, 2013 | Communication, Good Working Environment, Google, Productivity, Technology, Video

Technology has come a long way over the years. With these modern developments come changes in the workplace (quite literally, the place). More and more people are now working from home or remote offices. The use of video chat is nothing new, but video chats in the workplace have become quite prevalent as so many employees now work remotely. The development and improvement of these technologies have expanded webcam interactions from one-on-one to full video conferencing.

Video chats are a great business tool for any company with employees working from a distance. They promote strong communication between co-workers, despite the space between them.

Here is a quick comparison of three of the most popular video chat applications:


Skype is a free platform for video chatting, but it is quite limiting if you want to interact with more than one device at a time—unless you pay to upgrade to premium services ($4.99/month), which allow up to 10 participants. Despite the user limitations, you can still do most actions that a video conference might require, such as messaging, screen-sharing, and unlimited file-sharing. However, all of these actions must be done within a chat.

Google Hangouts

Google Hangouts is another free platform, but its main advantage over Skype is its ability to have up to 10 participants in a chat/conference at a time for free. If 10 are not enough, it also provides an upgrade ($5/month) that allows up to 15 participants. Hangouts has the same basic functions as Skype, but with improved interaction and collaboration with the integration of other Google apps like Google Drive and YouTube. It also has the added bonus of free phone calls from any device, not to mention the live-stream capabilities with Hangouts On Air. These are live broadcasts available to Google+, YouTube, and your website, recorded and instantly saved to YouTube when the session ends.


GoToMeeting is a paid service (but with a 30-day free trial to ensure it’s what you want!) with up to five participants for $19/month or up to 25 participants for $49/month. If you’re a larger business and require the ability to have more than 15 participants, the cost is well worth it, as most platforms do not allow such a high quantity. Again, all the basic conference tools are available, but with even more capabilities than Google Hangouts. One of the main draws of GoToMeeting is the capacity to share keyboard/mouse control. This makes for easy, real-time remote collaboration or hands-on training. GoToMeeting also has added security that you won’t find with Skype or Hangouts.

In summary, Skype is a simple, accessible video chat option for an interaction between just two devices. If multiple remote employees need to communicate with each other or the main office, Google Hangouts or GoToMeeting is the way to go. All of these services can increase interactions between all employees, no matter the location. Building strong teams is important for any company, and what better way to do it than by keeping everyone involved and up to date with live video chats?

How do you use video conferencing to interact with employees and/or clients? What other technology helps you keep in touch with remote employees?
Melissa Katip
Administrative Assistant
Learn more about Melissa!

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