“We’ve found that the biggest hurdle to collaboration is people’s fear of technology failing them in front of their peers,” apprises Steve Grace, Principal, AV Helpdesk. “As a result, a lot of organizations shy away from more complex means of communication such as collaborative whiteboards to avoid embarrassment, and favour simple and reliable communication tools like phone and basic web based screen sharing applications instead.” Recalling his experience in the ever-evolving audiovisual (AV) industry, Grace also revealed that the segment is deprived of training options and gravely suffers from the lack of standardization. Alongside its nascent phase, the AV industry’s growth potential is deeply hampered by the absence of trained workforce. “Besides, properly performing audiovisual systems and collaborative technologies are dependent on numerous architectural factors that need to be considered along with the technology hardware and software,” adds Grace. AV Helpdesk, since its inception has always addressed collaboration anxieties through intuitive designs, reliable systems and proper training. “We (AV Helpdesk) spend about 20 percent of our time designing the technology systems and 80 percent of our time working out how best to adapt technology and integrate it so that it works well in an infinite variety of unique architectural environments,” says Grace.
This approach starts with engineering and the firm’s goal on every project is the simplest and most cost effective solution that meets the client’s needs, while facilitating future upgrades. Upon completion of the project, the collaboration consultants at AV Helpdesk also deliver training and on-site support services to address issues that are likely to arise after the installation phase is complete.
After an eventful start in the AV industry, the firm’s AV solutions and client-centric collaboration strategy are a result of its experience of addressing complex, real-world collaboration and global communication scenarios. By leveraging the acumen and knowledge gained through those dealings, the firm has empowered many large corporations in deploying technologies that would take them a long time to roll out internally and instead allowing AV Helpdesk to provide these new product piloting efforts. Through this approach they are able to work with the systems and platforms to understand the implications and benefits that are associated, speeding up the time of adoption for their clients.
“Our collaboration mission is to not only help organizations simplify global communication processes by deploying simple, user-friendly technology platforms but also, create a single point of contact,” beams Grace. “Our management services implement a unique approach of improving our client’s collaboration through a thorough process of global AV standardization. Unlike traditional consultants who leave much of the intellectual process to local AV Integrators, yielding major differences and potential incompatibilities between remote sites, AV Helpdesk centralizes all the intellectual services and designs that are specific down to the smallest piece.” The biggest advantage of this approach is that it can be replicated anywhere, using a variety of local audiovisual integration vendors, while still guaranteeing true standardization and uniform end user experience.
The success of AV Helpdesk’s transformative collaboration missions can be attributed to its laudable team of experts and principals that are very active in the execution of tasks. “In fact, not a single design, budget or engineering document is disseminated without being reviewed by our most experienced team members,” says Grace. “By taking responsibility of the engineering, programming and system calibration, we have extensive, real world experience with the equipment we specify. This hands-on knowledge gives us the edge we need to stay on top.”
For the future, AV Helpdesk is focusing on two new initiatives—increasing its on-site staffing and marketing its collaboration services to add more success stories and names in its clientele. “To date, we have operated entirely on word of mouth, with no marketing or sales effort at all. As a highly interactive and collaborative company, we can really put the latest collaborative tools to the test. As a small and nimble company, we can pilot these new systems immediately depending on how useful we find the features,” concludes Grace.