Top accolade for Church House Conference Centre AV team

Church House Conference Centre’s in-house AV team has won a prestigious industry award for its high quality service.

At the annual AV Awards, held on October 12 2012 at the London Hilton on Park Lane, the Westminster venue was chosen as the winner of the In-House AV Team of the Year category. The award was collected by AV manager Ian Locke and AV technician Jonathan Hills. It is the second time in three years that the venue has won the award, previously winning in 2010. It was also a finalist in 2011.

Church House Conference Centre offers state-of-the-art AV facilities which are managed by its highly professional team. The venue hosts a wide range of events, including gala dinners, product launches, cocktail receptions, award ceremonies, AGMs, conferences and board meetings, for which the AV team offer a seamless and flexible service.

By closely monitoring customer feedback and keeping up to date with the latest trends, the AV team is able to continuously improve its service offering and client experience. To keep ahead of client requirements, the venue has made significant investment in technology, equipment and people in the last 12 months. Its most recent upgrade was the installation of a 100MB per second broadband line which will mean Church House Conference Centre can accommodate even the most challenging audio visual requirements.

“We’re delighted that our in-house AV team has been recognised for its first class service,” says Robin Parker, Church House Conference Centre’s general manager. “With a wide range of technology and skills at their disposal, the AV team can offer clients a package suitable for events of any type or size. The team are the perfect example of how good practice, staff retention and investment in technology and infrastructure, as well as employee training and development, can provide clients with an exceptional AV experience and create a culture of AV excellence.”

Virtual video meet-ups drive conference costs down

By Hannah Evans, Event Sales Coordinator, Academy of Medical Sciences, 41 Portland Place

Gone are the days when companies needed to spend thousands of pounds transporting delegates from around the world to one location. Demand for video conferences at 41 Portland Place has leapt and the availability of this technology is having a major impact on the conference and meetings industry.

Why use video conferencing?

In the current economic client, it’s no surprise that organisations are feeling the pressure when it comes to justifying the money spent on hosting or attending events. Video conferencing saves time and money by removing the need for the business travel and accommodation necessary to bring delegates together.

Connect simply via a video conferencing unit and have the meeting as if everyone was in the same room. Video conferences save on transport and accommodation costs, helping the environment as a result by reducing carbon emissions and traffic congestion. For that reason, video conferencing has become the solution for eco-conscious businesses insistent on conducting meetings and events in a more responsible manner.

The time it takes to pull together a video conference is significantly less than that spent organising a traditional, face-to-face conference. Video conferencing strips out the need to factor in uncertainties such as travel time, flight delays or weather disruptions. In just a few minutes multiple people can be sat in front of a camera and screen, ready to talk face-to-face with other people in other locations and countries.

The call quality and enhanced network security capabilities of professional video conferencing technology are far superior for business communications than the mass-market video calling software now commonly used on personal computers and mobile devices. Connection quality is extremely important, as nothing breeds frustration and kills productivity like crackly phone lines that cut in and out.

Make your video conference a success with these 3 key tips:

  1. Don’t just predict, rehearse. Test in advance. Pre-determine potential video conferencing sticking points in advance. IT security measures, such as firewalls, will very often vary from one organisation to another. Even with high specification, state-of-the-art equipment in place, simple connections can become troublesome and time consuming to establish without rehearsed system syncing in advance of the video conference. At 41 Portland Place we always recommend performing a dummy run in advance of the live video conference to allow sufficient time for our expert team of technicians to resolve system incompatibilities.
  2. Ensure technical support is available. It is advisable to have expert technical support available before and during the conference. The peace of mind achieved by having a technician on hand to deal quickly with unforeseen or unexpected issues will leave you relaxed and free to focus on getting the most out of the discussions.
  3. Always have a contingency plan. Even if you have tested thoroughly and have an expert technician on hand, you should always plan for the unexpected! Technology is not faultless, and this is why at 41PP we always offer teleconferencing facilities as a backup.

Video conferencing at 41 Portland Place

We recently hosted an event in the Wolfson Conference Suite, at which interviews with candidates from all over the world took place. Thanks to thorough testing in advance of the event, every video call connection was trouble-free and made on time to satisfy our client’s tight schedule. Over two days, the event connected to Peru, Ethiopia, Japan, Australia, South Africa and five other countries.

For more information on video conferencing, or to discuss how it can be part of your next event, contact the events team at 41 Portland Place.