Editor's note: Today’s guest blogger is Anthony Osborne, Vice President of Marketing for The Climate Corporation, which brings the power of data and technology to the agriculture industry with the ultimate mission of combating climate change. The Climate Corporation is one of many companies outfitting conference rooms with Chromebox for meetings. To learn more, join us for a live Hangout on Air to see how companies can modernize the meeting room and reimagine collaboration.You might not associate farmers with technology from the Bay Area, but at The Climate Corporation, we’re dedicated to providing tools for farmers that help maximize their crop yields and use natural resources efficiently. We believe that innovation plays a vital role in their mission; we also apply this belief to improve the way our employees work.
Oftentimes, a culture of perpetual innovation means our days are filled back to back with meetings. With offices in San Francisco, Seattle, St. Louis, and Kansas City, coordinating meetings and catch-ups across time zones can pose a number of challenges. The San Francisco team typically gets to work at 9am but stays late; in St. Louis, we’re at work by 7am and out by 6pm. Until recently, most people worked late at the office and often missed out on quality time at home. We flew between our offices for meetings, which cost time and money. And when we weren’t traveling, we held meetings over the phone, which were typically less engaging and productive. We considered high-end video conferencing solutions, but the cost (over $70,000) limited how many conference rooms we could equip.
Then we discovered Chromebox for meetings. At a $999 starting price, we can afford to place Chromeboxes in conference rooms across all of our offices and bring our spread-out teams together throughout the day without the travel costs or conference call grievances. Now, it’s almost like our colleagues in San Francisco are in the same room with us in St. Louis. Our IT team loved the easy setup – all they had to do was plug in the display and complete the setup wizard. And our employees love the speed and simplicity of meetings.
Not only are Chromeboxes in our conference rooms, but some of us have them at home, too. In my case, I can spend some time with my kids, then jump onto a face-to-face meeting for a half-hour if I need to, all without being forced to stay in the office.
Today, 80% of our meetings are now held on Hangouts using Chromebox for meetings. Coupling our new way of collaboration with Google Apps—which we’ve already been using for work, in and out of the office—I’m amazed at how technology transforms our work day. Now that we’re collaborating more efficiently, we can do a much better job of creating products that help our customers monitor the impact of climate on their businesses.