From Collaboration to Creation
Client Collaboration Fuels the Design Process
Client focused and value driven, HKS, Inc., a global architecture and design firm, prides itself on designing spaces that are the result of collective collaboration between HKS and its clients. With 27 offices and projects spanning 1,263 cities in 80 countries, HKS found both internal and client meetings burdensome. Polycom video conferencing systems were installed in 15 of HKS’s larger offices, with the remaining smaller offices only able to join meetings through an audio connection. HKS found it hard to cost justify purchasing video systems for every office, but knew their current methods of patching audio connections into video meetings was not effective. Meetings with clients were even more difficult. As an architecture firm, client meetings often required sharing plans and designs. In order to engage with clients visually, HKS often requested that they download the MS Lync web software to join meetings. This method was less than ideal since many companies have rules against downloading software. With less than optimal results during both internal and client meetings, HKS’s CIO mandated that the IT group find a solution that would allow anyone to connect to a video meeting from any location on any video-enabled device, including mobile.
Choosing Blue Jeans Over Other Vendors
After evaluating Vidyo, and a few other solutions, HKS discovered Blue Jeans. They immediately saw the value in Blue Jeans’ interoperability that would allow users to join meetings from practically any video client. HKS also liked the fact that as a cloud solution, there was no risk or long-term commitment to get started. In fact, Blue Jeans was so easy; they were able to start using it almost immediately, giving their smaller offices and clients the ability to join video meetings using just a webcam, laptop and a standard web browser.
Meetings became much easier, thanks to Blue Jeans. Previously, weekly Monday morning partner meetings required a dedicated person to set up the video call and to make sure everyone was able to join. Pre-call set up and testing usually took over 90 minutes and calls typically never started on time. Since moving to Blue Jeans, Monday morning meetings are headache free and start on time. HKS clients also benefit from Blue Jeans’ unified experience and intuitive user interface, making it easy for them to join video meetings without having to spend the first 5-10 minutes of the meeting trouble shooting their video connection.
Blue Jeans’ support for mobile devices has also opened up new use cases for HKS. Now, anyone with a tablet or smartphone can join a meeting from a construction site and show, in real-time, the progress of the project. Blue Jeans has simplified what was once a challenging process, giving HKS a way to connect the people that matter and to share ideas and experiences. For HKS, the design process is about people, and it starts with listening and understanding. Blue Jeans makes that possible by fading to the background so that the people and ideas are front and center.
HKS, Inc. use cases for Blue Jeans:
- Partner meetings
- Client design reviews
- Field design reviews
- Inter-office communication
- Transcontinental meetings
As a global architecture firm with 27 offices spanning the globe, HKS found interoffice communication and client meetings burdensome. Video systems were deployed at larger offices but not the smaller ones, leaving meetings a mix of video and audio. Meetings with clients were also difficult since clients typically didn’t have the same type of equipment available and were on different networks.
Blue Jeans’ cloud-based video service had an immediate impact on the way HKS could collaborate with other offices and clients.
Blue Jeans’ browser option allowed video in offices that didn’t have dedicated video systems. It also allowed clients to join video meetings without a lot of hassle or training.