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The Business Case for Skype Usage

There are huge business benefits to using Skype: You can save money, use video for greater personal connection, group video calling for collaboration, record audio and create a podcast, send files, instant message, click on phone numbers on websites to call them instantly, get call forwarding and voicemail, and work internationally at little expense to customers and partners overseas.

But how important are these things? To make its case, in 2010 Skype commissioned a report by GigaOM called "The Future Of Workplaces" that surveyed 1,000 employees (http://livingworkplace.skype.com/).

Some of the most important findings were the following:

  • Sixty-two percent of businesses have remote workers. The larger the company, the more likely they are to allow remote work. On average, across all businesses, about one-third of workers do some remote work. Fifty-seven percent of businesses allow employees to keep flexible hours.
  • Forty percent of business people feel they suffer from information overload and that email is the number one contributor to that problem. More than two-thirds expect email and office landline use to decrease in the future.
  • Communication technologies most on the rise are mobile phone, texting, video conferencing (desktop-like Skype more so than room-based). Remote workers most favor mobile phone, texting, instant messaging, and social networks. Corporate IT departments are involved less and less in all these technologies.
  • Video helps remote workers "seem" more present and part of the team than any other technology. Decision makers like video calling even more than end users. They believe it saves them time and money, and facilitates richer and more productive business relationships.
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