I was interested in the experiences of web conferencing beginners Devon County Council as reported on the Towards Maturity site – see Devon County Council improves efficiency with web conferencing. In particular I thought I’d share their hints and tips:
- If you are conducting a programme for over 16, you need to have 2 of you supporting learners, one leading the event and the other supporting individuals via the chat room.
- We found that a half day workshop could be compressed into a 1 hour webinar.
- If you are asking staff to interact with the content (through note taking, mind maps etc) then an hour on the end of a telephone is quite a lot – it’s better to make a small investment in headphones that can be loaned to staff on the programme which leaves their hands free.
- Make sure you have a quiet venue to conduct the session from – an open plan office isn’t the best.
- PC’s in the council are timed to shut down if inactive for a certain period – we had to be proactive in introducing time for ‘mouse wiggle’ into the programme – a bit of fun that kept both staff and their machines engaged!
- Without the face-to-face contact, we found that we had to concentrate on varying style and content within the webinar to engage staff.