Office of Personnel Management

Go Virtual

I suggest you...have virtual meetings, trainings, and conferences.

 

The government is notorious for feeling as though they need to see people face-to-face to get their message across. It is nice to have National Summits face-to-face, but many meetings, trainings, or conferences could be done virtually.

Invest in web conferencing services such as Microsoft's Live Meeting, Cisco Systems Inc.'s WebEx Meeting Center, IBM's Lotus Sametime Unyte, Citrix Systems Inc.'s GoToMeeting, amongst many other options.

 

Choose a system which is most widely available to our clients (the public and internal customers) to reduce the cost to them.

 

This option for meetings, trainings, and conferences will cut down on cost to both the government and our clients. Air travel and hotel costs will not be necessary, car rentals will not be needed, and space rental at a hotel or other conference facility will not be required. Meeting, training, and conference attendees will also save on extra expenses, such as checked bag fees, cab fees, and meal costs all of which are billed to the government (or other business entity).

 

The cost of web conferencing services varies based on the program used but the cost difference between virtual meetings and face-to-face meetings could save the government millions of dollars over time.

 

Example of cost comparison of travel to hold a meeting versus cost of web conferencing:

 

Assumptions:

Travel time (roundtrip) 4.0 hours

Distance (roundtrip) 500 miles

Airline expenses $250

Hotel expenses (one night) $200

Additional Expenses $70

Charge for meeting room $500

Cost for Printing Meeting Materials $ 150

Phone costs per minute and participant $0.05

Web conference solution (monthly flatrate) $200

 

Travel to Hold a Meeting:

Number of participants: 60

Number of participants traveling to venue: 50

Meeting duration in hours: 7

Cost of printing meeting materials: $150

License costs per month: $0

Cost of time spent traveling: $4,000

Travel expenses: $26,000

Total cost of traveling: $30,000

Cost of meeting room: $500

Cost of conference call: $0

Total cost per meeting: $30,650

 

Web Conferencing:

Number of participants: 60

Number of participants traveling to venue: 0

Meeting duration in hours: 7

Cost of printing meeting materials: $0

License costs per month: $200

Cost of time spent traveling: $0

Travel expenses: $0

Total cost of traveling: $0

Cost of meeting room: $0

Cost of conference call: $21

Total cost per meeting: $221

 

Savings: $30,429

Saving in percentage: 99%

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Idea No. 3292