Research: Nearly 11 Million Meeting Rooms Out There – Digital Door Signs, Anyone?

UK-based Futuresource Consulting has pushed out new research focused on the corporate market and looking at the rise of technology such as digital meeting room signs.

“Over the past 5 years, Futuresource has been tracking the corporate meeting room technology space and the landscape has evolved rapidly, with the market demanding a broader spectrum of feature sets and technologies than ever before. This change in adoption and use case has brought an increasing number of solution providers from different parts of the AV/IT market into the meeting room,” says Anthony Brennan, Research Analyst at Futuresource.

The interest is there because there are, says Futuresource, nearly 11 million meeting rooms in Western Europe and North America. With digital door signs alone – never mind things like interactive displays and  video conferencing – that’s a lot of potential screens and software licenses.

“It is not just about firms blindly investing in the ‘latest and greatest’ when planning meeting room technology, it is much more than that. It is about the blending together of both physical and digital to foster synthesis and innovation in the workspace. This is critical for employee success which is in turn key to business accomplishment, and firms realize this,” says Brennan.

Futuresource interviewed more than 2,500 end-users and decision makers from the U.S.A., U.K., France and Germany to get perspectives on the demographics of meeting rooms, use of meeting room technologies, budgeting and purchasing of technologies and end-user behaviour.

 

Says a release on the report:

Amongst widespread technological innovations, devices used in meeting rooms have evolved significantly in recent years, with spending on products diversifying as a result. Meeting room budgets are increasingly being distributed to cover a broader range of technologies, with respondents seeing an increase in spending on products beyond displays, for example audio, collaboration devices and control products.

With a growing number of solutions on the market and increasing appetite amongst end-users for a range of technologies, vendors from a wide range of disciplines and backgrounds are increasingly targeting opportunities in the corporate sector.

Despite the vast opportunities available, challenges remain. This is particularly evident in the growing trend amongst major providers to incorporate a wide range of functionalities into a single device. A good example of this has been the development of video conferencing sounds bars from companies like Yamaha and Harman. With nearly 50% of spending in small meeting rooms attributed to devices outside display technologies, it is easy to understand the unique selling point of devices that seek to cover more of an end-users meeting room needs.

 

The results highlight that there is a very good reason for the widespread attention paid to ‘huddle spaces’ and small meeting rooms. While defining a ‘huddle space’ remains challenging, small meeting rooms sitting up to 6 people accounts for 49% of meeting rooms in Western Europe and North America. Beyond these dedicated spaces, respondents state that 20% of meetings are being held in non-traditional areas such as in kitchens, breakout spaces, receptions and foyers, a clear opportunity for vendors to tap into.

These spaces drive both informal and productive interaction, allowing for faster and more flexible meeting scenarios. Given the widespread nature of these meetings it is important for vendors to reflect on the impact that this may have on the market, particularly considering that 43% of companies surveyed stated that they are investing in technology for meetings held outside of meeting rooms. “Furthermore, a good example of the impact of these spaces could be seen in the US. While much of the investment made is for Wi-Fi access, the USA saw a much higher propensity to invest in conferencing technologies for huddle areas, presenting a significant opportunity for vendors,” adds Brennan.

The report is fee-based and I’m not sure what it costs (doesn’t say online).

Dave Haynes

Dave Haynes

Editor/Founder at Sixteen:Nine
Dave Haynes is the founder and editor of Sixteen:Nine, an online publication that has followed the digital signage industry for more than a decade. Dave does strategic advisory consulting work for many end-users and vendors, and also writes for many of them. He's based near Toronto.
Dave Haynes

@sixteennine

12+ year-old blog and podcast about digital signage & related tech, written by industry consultant, analyst & bullshit filter Dave Haynes.
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