Outdated or ineffective technology is a quick way to sour your relationship with those who use your facility. After all, companies want the best conference room technology — tools that are modern, easy to use, and adaptable.

No matter whether you’re a facility manager, team leader, or an IT professional, it’s your job to ensure that your conference rooms are equipped with solid tech. That’s why we’re here. At OfficeRnD, we help leaders manage their facilities every day. In this article, we walk you through specific tech features we recommend incorporating into your conference room. We also discuss how to choose and set up the right technology.


Quick Summary:

  • Every conference room should be equipped with advanced technology for client satisfaction.
  • Some of the must-have conference room technology include wireless connectivity, room lightning systems, audio conferencing equipment, and meeting room booking software
  • Following best practices allows you to maximize the return on investment for your tech choices.

Why Invest in Conference Room Technology?

No matter if your team works mostly hybrid or fully on-site, you need the right conference room technology to have a productive meeting. Remote employees want to be able to collaborate in real-time and feel as if they’re in the same room.

As a manager, your responsibility is to provide your team members with what they need to do their best work. That means you must keep up-to-date with conference room technology trends and equipment that enables top-notch productivity and collaboration.

But budgets aren’t unlimited. You may need to choose a single meeting room to have everything you want and need.

Other meeting rooms might have smaller sets of tech features. Some may even have only the bare essentials.

Your goal as a facility manager is to invest in tech that attracts clients and avoids the cost of constant maintenance or turnover. With tools and equipment that serve diverse audiences, you can keep your hybrid workplaces humming.

Here’s a quick guide on how to set up a meeting room for success.

Now, let’s dive into the conference room specifics.

The Best Conference Room Technology for the Workplace

There are many areas where you can improve your conference room to give your attendees that sought-after immersive experience. Here are the main ones:

conference meeting

Room Lighting Systems

It doesn’t make sense to invest in expensive cameras and display tech if the room’s lighting is poor or even average. Remote conferencing and filming in-person presentations require proper lighting.

Well-lit workspaces also play a crucial role in keeping people focused, attentive, and productive. Plus, if you choose the right system, such as a smart system or motion sensors, you can reduce your facility’s energy consumption, which aids sustainability.

Here’s a good list of the best office lighting options.

And here are three popular brands known for their conference room lighting systems:

  1. Philips Hue White and Color Ambiance: This smart lighting system offers a wide range of colors and adjustable white light to create the perfect ambiance for any meeting. It can be controlled via a mobile app, voice commands, or integrated with existing conference room control systems. The system allows for customizable lighting scenes to suit different meeting types, from presentations to brainstorming sessions.
  2. Lutron Vive: The Vive system is a wireless lighting control solution that provides easy installation and flexibility. It allows for the control of lights through wireless remotes, sensors, or mobile devices. The system is scalable and can be integrated with other building systems. Lutron Vive enables energy savings, improved comfort, and productivity by allowing users to adjust lighting levels to meet the needs of various tasks and activities.
  3. Crestron Zūm: This lighting control system is designed for simplicity and scalability, offering wireless lighting control for conference rooms and other spaces. Zūm can be easily configured and expanded to meet the needs of different room sizes and layouts. The system includes wireless dimmers, occupancy sensors, and daylight sensors to optimize lighting levels automatically, ensuring the right amount of light for any activity while enhancing energy efficiency.

Wireless Connectivity

Wireless connections remove the need for cumbersome cables. They make meeting setups easier and provide a more organized environment.

Many technologies depend on strong wireless connectivity. Examples include the following:

  • Wireless presentation systems
  • Remote collaboration tools
  • Real-time content sharing

If you’re managing a facility, make sure your conference rooms can handle high-bandwidth demands, as multiple hybrid companies will likely need them simultaneously at times.

Presentation and Collaboration Tools

Hybrid work is simply part of the equation now. After all, it’s been shown to improve work-life balance, increase productivity, and foster healthier lifestyles.

But to keep virtual meetings and brainstorming sessions engaging, you need tools that offer effective visuals and facilitate full participation. So, the software you choose should support high-definition video. Features like screen sharing and remote control access allow presenters to deliver more dynamic presentations.

Here are some important presentations and collaboration tools to consider:

  • High-definition projectors
  • Motorized screens or large fixed screens
  • Smartboards that allow for touch input (more on that later)
  • Cameras (e.g., PTZ cameras for auto-tracking)
  • Microphones (e.g., boundary or ceiling microphones)
  • Speaker systems (high-quality audio output)
  • Integrated systems (e.g., Cisco Webex Room Kits, Zoom Rooms, Microsoft Teams Rooms)

Working under a hybrd work model? Here’s an extensive article on the best hybrid meeting equipment.

Digital Whiteboards and Interactive Displays

To ensure effective collaboration between team members, regardless of their individual locations, you need digital whiteboards for delivering presentations. Users can also share documents and photos and interact across devices with these tools.

Interactive displays add functionality that lets people interact directly with content, add notes, or make changes in real time. Touch screens, stylus pens, and advanced software help teams brainstorm new ideas and visualize together.

Here are three popular brands known for their digital whiteboards and interactive displays:

  1. Microsoft Surface Hub: The Microsoft Surface Hub is a collaborative, touch-enabled display designed for team meetings and brainstorming sessions. It runs Windows 10 and integrates with Microsoft Office 365 and Microsoft Teams.
  2. Google Jamboard: The Google Jamboard is a cloud-based digital whiteboard that allows for interactive collaboration. It integrates seamlessly with Google Workspace (formerly G Suite), enabling users to work on documents, spreadsheets, and presentations in real time.
  3. SMART Technologies: SMART Boards are interactive whiteboards that offer touch and multi-touch capabilities, enabling dynamic and interactive presentations. They come with SMART Notebook software, which is widely used in educational and corporate environments for interactive learning and collaboration.

Audio Conferencing Equipment

Sound is another area that requires careful attention when setting up or refurbishing a modern conference room. Clear audio facilitates focus and participation.

empty conference room

Fortunately, there are solutions available that use noise and echo cancellation technology. Some even feature AI-powered mixers so users can optimize sound levels on the fly.

These things give the conference room a professional vibe.

Here are three popular brands known for their audio conferencing equipment suitable for modern conference rooms:

  1. Poly (formerly Polycom): Poly offers a range of audio conferencing solutions, including conference phones like the Polycom Trio series, which provide high-quality audio with advanced noise cancellation and full-duplex technology for clear communication.
  2. Yamaha: Yamaha provides professional-grade audio conferencing equipment, such as the Yamaha YVC series of conference phones and microphone systems, known for their superior sound quality and innovative sound processing technologies.
  3. Jabra: Jabra offers a variety of audio conferencing devices, including the Jabra Speak series, which are portable speakerphones designed for conference calls with excellent sound quality, intuitive controls, and seamless connectivity with various conferencing platforms.

Speakers and Microphones

Now, let’s be more specific with the audio equipment and talk about the microphones.

conference room microphone

Remote participants need to hear and be heard by all other meeting participants. Quality microphones can capture sounds from all over the room.

A large venue may benefit from one or more ceiling-mounted microphones or speakers. But a smaller meeting room might be perfectly equipped with more conventional microphones and wall-mounted speakers.

Advanced microphone systems with directional capabilities or automatic speaker detection can adapt to who’s speaking and where they are in the room.

Here are three popular brands known for their microphones used in conference rooms:

  1. Shure: Shure offers a variety of high-quality microphones for conferencing, including the Shure MXA910 Ceiling Array Microphone and the Shure MXA310 Table Array Microphone, which provide clear and precise audio capture with advanced beamforming technology.
  2. Audio-Technica: Audio-Technica provides a range of conferencing microphones, such as the Audio-Technica ATND971a Cardioid Condenser Boundary Microphone and the Audio-Technica AT8666RSC Microphone Stand, known for their reliability, clarity, and ease of integration into various conferencing systems.
  3. Sennheiser: Sennheiser offers professional-grade microphones for conference rooms, including the Sennheiser TeamConnect Ceiling 2 Microphone and the Sennheiser MEB 114-S Table Boundary Microphone, which deliver exceptional sound quality and advanced features like automatic beamforming and remote management.

Video Conferencing Equipment

Google Meet, Microsoft Teams, and Zoom aren’t always adequate. It can be awkward when some team members are around a table in a meeting room while others are connected virtually.

You need video conferencing software and tools to capture clear video. You also need to project images of the remote participants and content on a big screen or video wall.

Putting all that together with a great sound kit enables a seamless experience that sets the stage for highly effective communication — and productive meetings.

Here are three popular brands known for their video conferencing equipment suitable for conference rooms:

  1. Logitech have the popular Logitech Rally Series: High-quality video conferencing solutions with modular audio, expansive PTZ (pan-tilt-zoom) capabilities, and Ultra-HD video. The Rally Bar and Rally Plus systems are particularly popular for their ease of use and excellent video and audio performance. And Logitech MeetUp is a compact, all-in-one conference camera designed for huddle rooms and smaller spaces, featuring a wide-angle lens, integrated speakers, and microphones.
  2. Cisco offer the Cisco Webex Room Kits: Comprehensive video conferencing solutions that integrate with the Cisco Webex platform. These systems include cameras, microphones, and speakers, with advanced features like facial recognition, voice tracking, and AI-driven meeting controls. Moreover, Cisco TelePresence are high-end video conferencing solutions designed for immersive experiences, often used in larger conference rooms and boardrooms.
  3. Poly (formerly Polycom) offer the Poly Studio X Series: All-in-one video bars that provide high-quality video and audio for conference rooms. The Studio X30 and Studio X50 models are known for their simplicity, AI-driven camera framing, and integration with various conferencing platforms. And Poly G7500 is a modular video conferencing system that combines content sharing and video conferencing capabilities, suitable for medium to large conference rooms with advanced audio and video quality.

High-Definition Cameras

A key component of any video conferencing system is the camera.

There are many options to choose from, including the following:

  • 4k HD cameras
  • Intelligent 360° cameras
  • Pan-Tilt-Zoom (PTZ) cameras
  • AI-powered tabletop cameras

high def camera

Some models use facial recognition features and AI to track and zoom in on whoever is speaking. This is useful for remote participants but distracting if the images are projected live on a big screen in the room.

Allowing for personal preference is also important. Your conference room setup should allow participants to opt in or out of camera use.

For example, they may feel certain cameras are invasive or they need to restrict their camera use while sharing sensitive info.

You want to make sure each client feels comfortable and in control of their environment.

Here are three popular brands known for their high-definition cameras:

  1. Logitech Rally Camera: A premium PTZ camera with Ultra-HD imaging, 15x HD zoom, and a wide field of view. It is designed for professional video conferencing, offering smooth pan, tilt, and zoom functionalities along with advanced Logitech RightSense technologies for automatic framing and light optimization.
  2. Cisco TelePresence SpeakerTrack 60: A dual-camera system that uses advanced facial recognition and voice triangulation technology to automatically track and frame active speakers in the room. It provides seamless transitions between speakers and ensures a high-quality video experience.
  3. AVer CAM540: A 4K PTZ camera designed for video conferencing, offering a 16x total zoom (12x optical zoom) and a wide 86-degree field of view. It features SmartFrame technology for automatic participant framing and provides high-quality video with seamless integration into various conferencing platforms.

Conference Room Displays

Large screens are standard in most conference rooms. They used to be intended for presentations or playing video clips, but nowadays, they also function as a roll call for everyone in a meeting when discussions are underway.

There are many options when it comes to these screens, such as the following:

  • Large-screen television or monitor
  • Projectors (usually using a plain white wall or drop-down screen)
  • LED video wall

These tools are a central feature of conference and meeting rooms and are used constantly.

And here are three popular brands known for their conference room displays:

  1. Samsung Flip 2: An interactive digital flipchart designed for collaborative meetings. It features UHD resolution, touch capability, and easy connectivity options. The Flip 2 allows multiple users to write and draw simultaneously, making it ideal for brainstorming sessions and presentations.
  2. LG 86TR3BF-B: An 86-inch UHD interactive digital board with multi-touch functionality. It supports up to 20 simultaneous touch points, providing a seamless and interactive experience for meetings. The display offers excellent image quality, intuitive user interface, and compatibility with various collaboration software.
  3. BenQ RP8602: An 86-inch 4K UHD interactive flat panel designed for corporate environments. It features advanced touch technology, built-in collaboration tools, and eye-care solutions to reduce eye strain during prolonged use. The RP8602 also supports wireless screen sharing and comes with an integrated whiteboard app for enhanced collaboration.

Meeting Room Booking System

A meeting room booking system streamlines the process of reserving meeting rooms and helps prevent double bookings and scheduling conflicts.

It makes room availability transparent, allowing teams to plan and coordinate accordingly. Plus, it helps ensure meeting spaces are used to their fullest potential.

In other words, they’re important.

OfficeRnD Hybrid is a powerful, yet easy-to-use hybrid work management solution that has a user-friendly meeting room booking system.

It allows you to:

  • Create and manage meeting rooms
  • Find the right space for any meeting
  • Enrich any meeting experience by offering meeting services such as catering, room setup, layour reorganization, and more. Read more about that powerful feature here.
  • Invite everyone to join onsite to boost collaboration
  • Optimize your meeting rooms based on data
  • Book from anywhere on a visual floorplan

Meeting Room Displays

Often, the last piece of business in a meeting is deciding on a date and time for the next meeting with that same group.

Meeting room displays are often an extension of meeting booking systems, showing the room’s availability in real time. This allows users to set a date and reserve the same room for a future meeting.

Meeting attendees can also consult the meeting room display before each meeting to make sure they’re in the right place.

OfficeRnD Hybrid offers intuitive meeting room displays that increase visibility, eliminate booking confusion, and integrate with Outlook and Google.

How to Choose the Right Technology for a HybridWorkplace

When we talk about choice, you need to know the best conference room technology for you.

4 people wondering

It is also crucial to think ahead as you invest in technology. Virtual reality and voice recognition tools are becoming more commonplace in conference rooms. Look out for those.

Keep in mind, too, that each facility has site-specific factors, including the following:

  • Security
  • Privacy laws
  • Acoustics

The precise mix of technologies and products you choose is entirely up to you. Balance your budget with the demands of your target users.

If you’re a facility manager, it’s probably worth consulting your clients directly to gain their insights here. It’s a far better idea to use real client data than to try to guess what they want.

Choosing the right conference room technology for your hybrid workplace involves considering several factors to ensure seamless communication, collaboration, and productivity. As hybrid work models are currently prevalent, it’s crucial to equip conference rooms with technology that supports both in-person and remote participants effectively.

Assess Your Needs

Start by understanding your team’s specific needs. Evaluate the types of meetings you typically hold—whether they are small huddles, large presentations, or collaborative brainstorming sessions. Determine the number of participants, both in-person and remote, and consider the level of interaction required during meetings.

Audio Quality

Crystal-clear audio is essential. Choose microphones that capture voices accurately and reduce background noise. Shure MXA910 Ceiling Array Microphone and Audio-Technica ATND971a Cardioid Condenser Boundary Microphone are top choices. Ensure your audio conferencing system includes reliable speakers for clear sound output.

Interactive Displays

Interactive displays facilitate collaboration by allowing participants to share and annotate content in real-time. Consider displays like the Samsung Flip 2 or the LG 86TR3BF-B, which offer touch capabilities and high-resolution screens. These displays can transform any meeting into an engaging, productive session.

Unified Communication Platforms

Select a unified communication platform that integrates video, audio, and collaboration tools. Platforms like Microsoft Teams, Zoom, and Cisco Webex provide comprehensive solutions that support seamless interaction between in-person and remote attendees.

Ease of Use and Integration

Ensure the chosen technology integrates well with existing systems and is user-friendly. Complicated setups can hinder productivity and frustrate users. Opt for plug-and-play solutions that require minimal technical expertise to operate.

Scalability and Future-Proofing

Lastly, consider the scalability of your technology. As your team grows, your conference room technology should be able to accommodate more users and adapt to evolving needs. Investing in modular systems can help future-proof your conference room setup.

By carefully evaluating these factors, you can select the right conference room technology that enhances collaboration, supports hybrid work, and drives productivity.

Best Practices for Setting Up New Technology

Buying and installing conference room technology isn’t a plug-and-play scenario. Setting it up for your facility can be a complicated process.

Here are some considerations to help ease the transition:

Optimize the Room Layout and Acoustics

If you want your meeting room to provide optimal audio and visual experiences for users, pay attention to the room’s layout and acoustics.

There are four key aspects to consider here:

  • Focal point: Provide flexible furniture and organize the seating so participants can naturally swivel to face a central point or large screen if and when they need to.Speakers: Place speakers throughout the room to allow for even sound distribution.
  • Acoustics: Use acoustic panels or carpets to absorb sound in the meeting room and dampen noise levels for the participants.
  • Visibility: Make sure everyone will be able to enjoy an unobstructed view of all screens or whiteboards simply by swiveling their chairs.

Establish Top-Notch Security and Data Protection

Businesses need to feel safe with their confidential and company-specific info at your facility.

The amount of security necessary will depend on the sensitivity of the information and the unique variables of your clients. But all companies are bound by at least some data privacy regulations and privacy concerns.

Here are several security mechanisms you can have in your arsenal:

  • Implement keycard or biometric access to conference rooms
  • Encrypt all data shared in the facility
  • Install privacy filters on the windows

smart doors

How to Maximize Conference Room Equipment

Making tech improvements to an existing or new facility isn’t cheap. To ensure you get a solid return on your investment, deepen your understanding of what your target clients (or team members) want. You can survey users or analyze data on how your facilities are currently being used.

Also, new technology is often misunderstood. It can be misused or even broken if not used correctly.

One of your responsibilities as facilities manager is to train your staff on the new technology you install. All staff members should also be well-versed in the latest conference room technology trends.

Managing Conference Rooms with OfficeRnD Hybrid

No matter the workplace you manage, it relies oninnovative conference and meeting rooms for optimal team collaboration and communication. These spaces are right at the nexus of in-person and remote work.

As a facility manager, you want to serve your clients as well as protect your investment in these rooms. That’s best done with an efficient and easy-to-use workplace management platform like OfficeRnD Hybrid, which not only allows you to book desks and meeting rooms, but to create a workplace where both people and work thrive.

Get started for free with OfficeRnD Hybrid to see everything it can do for you.

FAQ

What Is Conference Room Technology?

Conference room technology is any product that helps to improve the quality of meeting room discussions. This includes audio or video equipment and shared resources.

What Is an Immersive Experience in a Conference?

An immersive experience in a conference is the feeling of being part of — and surrounded by — colleagues and fellow team members. Everyone is actively participating in the meeting, no matter their location. This experience may or may not involve virtual technology.

What Is a Smart Meeting Room?

A smart meeting room is a conference or meeting space that features automated systems or integrated technology to deliver an interactive and productive experience.

What Technology Do You Need in a Conference Room?

In a conference room, essential technology includes a reliable high-speed internet connection, a projector or large display screen for presentations, and audio-visual equipment for clear sound and video conferencing capabilities. Additionally, having a speakerphone system, HDMI and USB connections, and possibly interactive whiteboards enhances the functionality and productivity of meetings, supporting both in-person and remote collaboration.

What is the Best Video Conferencing System for Conference Rooms?

The best video conferencing system for conference rooms often depends on the specific needs and size of the organization. Systems like Zoom Rooms and Microsoft Teams Rooms are highly regarded for their ease of use, integration with other software, and reliable performance. Cisco Webex and Google Meet hardware also offer robust solutions with excellent video and audio quality, suitable for various room sizes, ensuring seamless communication across teams.

What is Better than Meeting Owl Pro?

While the Meeting Owl Pro is popular for its 360-degree video and audio capture, alternatives like the Logitech Rally or Poly Studio might offer advantages depending on your needs. The Logitech Rally provides superior video and sound quality with a modular system adaptable for different room sizes. Poly Studio is noted for its advanced audio features and speaker tracking technology, making it ideal for dynamic discussions and larger rooms. Each system has unique features that can be better suited to specific conferencing demands.

What is the Best Technology for Hybrid Meetings?

The best technology for hybrid meetings typically includes a combination of high-quality video conferencing software and hardware that supports both in-person and remote participants effectively. Zoom and Microsoft Teams are top choices for their robust features, such as screen sharing, real-time collaboration, and integration with other productivity tools. Hardware like the Poly Studio X series or the Logitech Rally series enhances audio and video quality, ensuring that all participants, whether remote or onsite, can interact seamlessly and effectively.

Which Technology is Mainly Used for Virtual Meetings?

For virtual meetings, the primary technology used includes video conferencing software such as Zoom, Microsoft Teams, and Google Meet. These platforms provide comprehensive features like video and audio calling, screen sharing, chat functions, and the ability to handle large numbers of participants simultaneously. They are widely adopted for their user-friendly interfaces and compatibility with various devices, facilitating effective communication and collaboration across locations.

Asen Stoyanchev
Senior Content Marketing & SEO Specialist | OfficeRnD
Asen is passionate about flexible working and the future of work. He firmly believes that work flexibility directly impacts one's health and well-being. When he's not writing, Asen spends his time devouring business literature, hiking, and parenting.