Today’s boardroom is transforming as we speak. No longer is it the boardroom of the past, which hosted a couple of board meetings a year and then lay idle. Today’s boardroom is changing rapidly due to emerging workplace trends and new technology.
This primer by Infocomm explores what it’s like to be inside today’s hi-tech modern boardroom. It shows how AV professionals are ensuring that the executive boardroom is no longer an island unto itself. The modern boardroom is becoming more like the desktop, so what executives do in their own office is what they can do in the boardroom.
Today’s offices consist of powerful mobile devices, laptops and smartphones, which have become all-in-one offices. These allow users to correspond and collaborate, share information, interact, and gather, store, and analyse data.
Organisations are creating new meeting spaces like huddle rooms, so that ideas can be shared easily between two or more people. Single-use offices are giving way to collaboration areas. And this trend applies to the modern executive boardroom.
AV professionals no longer take a single room or project approach. They take a platform approach so that it spreads out over the entire enterprise. In other words, the technology has to be scalable and consistent in every room.
Something about boardroom design
Boardroom design has taken on a holistic approach, with new systems and upgrades becoming a part of the modern boardroom as an interconnected whole. Communication tools are key in integrating today’s boardroom and the latter is transforming itself as a complete collaboration space.
Many organisations, however, prefer to keep boardroom design simple. Therefore it is imperative that AV professionals take the needs of executives into account when designing a boardroom.
One of the ways that AV professionals can do this, is by thinking ahead. For example, if a company wants a projector installed in their boardroom, AV professionals can advise them to install a video wall as well, taking into account their future needs. They can also advise them to install equipment that can be upgraded for video conferencing, or some form of Unified Communications and Collaboration (UCC).
So, contrary to popular opinion, videowall technology is not just for displays in lobbies and operations centres. Boardrooms can also benefit from large visual canvases. There are other things to keep in mind when integrating a smart boardroom. Installing projectors in a separate room removes noise and potential heat from the boardroom, and also eliminates on-screen shadows. Also, depending on budget, the projection room can accommodate a pair of projectors, as a backup, so that if one projector fails, the meeting can always go on.
To recover the amount spent on a smart boardroom, organisations are trying to maximise their investment. So, they use the boardroom almost every day for collaboration of different types. For example, they may use it for investor calls or other decision-making.
AV professionals know that an effective collaboration space, such as a modern boardroom is not just about the technology. For example, good acoustics is critical to the success of an effective meeting. Good acoustics is even more important in modern boardrooms, as most meetings today, include remote participants. Good AV in today’s smart boardrooms is not just a thing in the rooms, it is the room.
Some important points:
“While large LCD displays are becoming more readily available at reasonable cost, they still have a practical limit on what size space they can serve effectively. Once that threshold is crossed, alternate technologies, such as projection or a videowall may better suit the application, and those require differing infrastructure provisions.”
“You have to think bigger in a boardroom. As boardrooms get larger, you have to do what’s historically been called a mix-minus system so you can amplify voices within the room. There are better and better microphones, DSP algorithms and speakers out there.”
“Just as organisations have huddle rooms all the way up to boardrooms, people have the expectation that they can bring in a tablet and display or share content in the room.”
So, now you know how the modern boardroom is changing and changing rapidly. AV professionals are at the forefront of this change, as they take into account the needs of their customers. No longer are boardrooms only the preserve of the C-suite members. Increasingly, the smart boardroom is being used by everyone for everything – ranging from an investors’ meet to a director’s meeting. Here’s to seamless collaboration!
(Content courtesy: www.infocomm.org and images courtesy: www.crestron.com)