Conference Call Tips

Courteous Host

Consider your participants and corporate culture when scheduling a conference call. What time zones are involved, how long will the call be, etc. During long calls for example, schedule a short recess or allow participants to take a short break as needed. Remind your participants not to place their line on “HOLD” as many office PBX’s will play music into the conference. Instead, they can press 4# on their telephone keypad and MUTE their connection while they are unavailable. Moderators can visually monitor participant status in their own private Conference Room on our web site.

Use the Right Equipment
Avoid cellular and cordless phones because of annoying static, and speakerphones as they pick up background noise and sound like speaking in a tunnel. Also, some speakerphones don’t allow you to speak and hear at the same time, effectively “clipping off” parts of the conversation.

Plan Ahead
Determine the date, start time and number of participants.
Be aware of time zone differences. ExpressAttentand reservation-less service allows access 24/7 and doesn’t require a prior reservation. For operator assisted services contact ConferTel’s customer care representative to schedule your operator assisted conference.

Notify the Participants
Let all conference participants know the date and how they can access the teleconference.
Provide them with your dial-in number and Conference PassCode to enter the conference, include in your e-mail notification:
moderator’s name, start and estimated end times, subject and agenda. Also, let participants know of any preparation needed prior to the audio conference.

Integrate your Teleconference with a Web Presentation
ConferTel’s ExpressView service allows you to present your visual presentation over the internet to all your participants in a simple, easy manner.

Set the Audio Conference Goal
1. Pinpoint the objectives you wish to accomplish for the meeting.
2. Provide an agenda in advance.
3. Try to limit the agenda to three or four topics, and let the participants know how much time you intend to spend on each.

Eliminate Ambient Noise
Eliminate as much as possible the need to shuffle papers/ materials when you are speaking. Some speakerphone mics will pick up these sounds and it becomes very distracting.

Increase Attendance
1.  Email Pre-Notification – Remind your callers about the upcoming call to which they have already been invited. This can be easily done via ConferTel’s Online ConferencePlanner.

2. Dial-Out Participants – You can connect each participant personally by utilizing dial-out features. This can be performed by an operator as parto of our CallAssist or Virtual Attendant service. Or, you can dial-out to participants using our ExpressAttendant service.  This is extremely useful for international callers.

Ending the Call
When ending yoru conference call, always be clear and to the point. Thank everyone for their participation and be sure everyone realizes the meeting is officially over.  On ConferTel’s system press 9# to end the conference.

Don’t Forget Time Zones when Scheduling Conference Calls
If participants from across the country or abroad are going to be included, schedule the event in the time zone most convenient to the majority of participants. When assigning the start time make sure you notify your participants what time zone your scheduled time reflects.

How to Secure Your Conference Calls

  1. When an employee leaves your company, secure your conference calls by disabling the conference passcode that a person used or participated on.
  2. Avoid having uninvited participants joining your conference call by using ConferTel’s “Unique Passkey” feature and assign each person their own passkey to enter your conference calls.  These passkeys can be either used ongoing or a one-time use.
  3. Review your call summary report after each conference call to make sure only the people you invited actually attended your conference call.
  4. Use the roll call feature and enable it to play the person’s name when they enter or exit the conference call.