Telepresence is actually a technological term that describes a set of technologies that enable people to feel or appear like they are/were present in a location in whish they are not physically. Telepresence systems include electronic equipment like desktops and it must also assimilate services such as conference facilities, conference rooms and other telepresence systems that are fully ‘immersive.’ It is therefore important to note that telepresence provides the experience of being present at a particular physically remote location. In most cases, like in the fully immersive rooms, the technology is actually ‘just like being there.’ A number of technologies are brought together to create this experience. They include high definition voice and HD video, established data communication networks such as IP and ISDN, and a variety of interactive elements such as shared content and identical room set-ups.
Telepresence continues to grow in uses from analysis and decision making, to distance education, telemedicine, legal and applications that can benefit from enhanced agility and better communication among a distributed team. Telepresence helps in globalization of a business organization. It also helps to increase the efficiency of the organization and to expand network for business growth.
There are so many advantages of the telepresence technology. Although the advantages are accompanied with some disadvantages such as the high costs, the outcome is actually more advantageous to the organization. Before telepresence is achieved, various aspects such as room availability and technical requirement must be taken into consideration.
The social aspects of telepresence indicate that the technology is pretty advantageous. Taking into consideration that business in the global market place is at its core about face-to-face relationships, having eye to eye contact is actually paramount for business growth. In the past, it was necessary to travel sometimes even long distances to respective business partners. With the introduction of telepresence systems, geographical distance does no longer force global business partners to travel to far-flung locations in order to strengthen the business relationships. Currently, business associates can use their valuable time and resources much more efficiently by using telepresence solutions right from their offices. The time that was previously used in the plane, in the train, and in other main stations can now be used for other important business operations. The general availability of managers is increased thereby enabling them to be present to their co-located fellows. Telepresence also enables team leaders to manage their dispersed teams. This reduces the feelings of isolation and aligns work process with other team members. Telepresence can also boost a company’s image because it is a prestigious sophisticated communication media. It can make people perceive that the company is up to date with technology.
It is worth noting that business trips usually cause a lot of stress to the employees. By using telepresence facilities, the organization will reduce the amount of stress thereby enhancing the quality of employees’ life. Thus, valuable time of the employees can now be spent with the family members or other business matters. This may actually increase motivation and productivity of the employees. Another advantage of telepresence is that during a face to face meeting including telepresence meetings, participants are much less tempted to accomplish other unrelated work during the meeting because it is noticeable by others. Telepresence is therefore a tool that can also diminish the effects of virtual meetings that have no face-to-face interactions.