Spark Boards: The Swiss Army Knife of Collaboration

The modern conference room is littered with different tools, gadgets, and technology that all serve individual purposes. Together these tools support a collaborative environment that allows teams of professionals to work together with more efficiency and clarity. Yet, the number of requisite tools creates clutter and disunity in the conversation. There is at least a conference phone for voice calls, video conferencing equipment for video meetings, a whiteboard for visual diagrams, a projector to share laptop screen displays, and an easel pad for notes. That list doesn’t even include the myriad of cords and remotes needed to control or connect to some of these devices. The new Cisco Spark board provides a streamlined alternative that combines these tools into one device, but it doesn’t stop there.

 

Breaking Down Siloes with the Spark Board

Yes, the Spark Board combines all of the traditional video conferencing tools into a single device, but that doesn’t tell the whole story. The Spark Board also breaks down the siloes these different tools occupy. Because each of these tools is available through the Spark Board, the content conveyed through these tools is accessed and stored in the Cisco Spark Space for everyone on the team to view at their convenience.

Example:

The white board and easel pad during a meeting can be excellent tools to convey difficult concepts, but it is utterly useless to remote users on a conference call. Even users teleconferencing in must view these boards in the abstract. They must watch the video feed and can only view the whiteboard through that feed. What’s worse is that once the meeting ends, the board is erased, and it is gone forever. The only alternative is snapping a picture on your smartphone and sending it back to your main work end point.

The Spark Board Solution

Using Cisco Spark and the Spark Board, that same white board is displayed on the devices of those attending the meeting while the meeting is taking place. Remote users can even contribute to the drawing in real time from their own device. Then when the meeting ends, the drawing can be saved in the Spark Space relating to the project itself. The normal siloes are broken down so that anyone in the space can use any of these tools at any time and from any location.

 

In-Person Digital Meetings

There’s certainly value in conducting meetings face to face. There’s no denying that, and that’s precisely what makes the Spark Board so valuable itself. It provides a presenter all the traditional physical collaboration tools of the conference room without requiring every member of the team to be in the office at the same time to have a productive conversation. Life happens, and people are pulled in different directions for different reasons. The Spark Board and Cisco Spark provide the flexibility to maximize in-person collaboration without diminishing the clarity and efficiency of remote collaboration.

 

For Further Reading

Email Is Dead. Long Live Cisco Spark





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