• Productive meetings at the IOC with Panasonic

Productive meetings at the IOC with Panasonic

Panasonic HD Visual Communications System used to bring teams across countries together at the International Olympic Committee.

The International Olympic Committee (IOC), based in Lausanne, Switzerland holds supreme authority of the worldwide modern Olympic Movement, and organises the Olympic Games and Youth Games, held in summer and winter.

The IOC makes extensive use of Panasonic high definition video conferencing systems for collaboration, meeting and discussion both within the organisation and with the array of Olympic Games Organising Committees around the world.

By using the system, teams at the IOC can easily cross country boundaries and keep in touch, cutting down on travel time, costs and emissions.

For large organisations like the IOC with offices and teams scattered across continents and around the world, the cost and emissions from travelling for meetings and collaboration sessions can quickly become significant. The high image and sound quality of the Panasonic conferencing system allows teams to stay in their separate offices and yet feel like they are in the same room as each other, while completely eliminating the travel time and costs of meeting in person.

The system allows mobile users to participate wherever they happen to be with the HDVC Mobile application. Meanwhile a unique echo canceller on the system itself helps reduce the irritating background noise and voice echo prevalent on so many other video conferencing systems.

"The system is used like a standard phone," said David Rodriguez, Project Manager at IOC. "All you need to know is the domain name or the IP of the other person, so we're using video conferencing in exactly the same way we would have previously used a conference call system." 

"It’s not complicated and it doesn’t take very long to start a meeting"

The utility of the system is boosted with the ability to hold meetings whilst displaying images of your site, the other party’s site and PC data concurrently on one of three monitors, which allows everyone to clearly see what is being referred to throughout the video call.

Pierre Ducrey, Olympic Games Associate Director, said, “The IOC’s responsibility to monitor the progress of the Olympic Games requires us ideally to be at many different locations at the same time.”

“Obviously that’s not possible so having means of communication like high definition video conferencing is a great step forward for us, because it allows us to stay in touch with all the Organising Committees around the world on a continuous basis and in very good quality.”

The system outputs at full 1080p high definition at 60 frames per second. As a result, users feel that conference participants are in the same room, allowing the meeting to proceed without the distraction of a poor quality or unreliable system.

“It provides for very efficient communication, allowing us to have the same kind of meeting we would have in person and yet save us a lot of travel time. Overall from a sustainability standpoint it’s a much better option. We tend to prefer videoconferencing now as a result,” added Pierre Ducrey.

"It allows us to stay in touch with all the organising committees around the world"

The standard system comes with a six site connection, with the option to expand to ten sites with a licence. Groups can connect just like a phone conference system, with the increased flexibility and utility that comes with adding high definition video.

Michelle Lemaitre, Head of Sustainability at the IOC, said, “We have worked with the different Olympic Games Organising Committees with regards to them installing the Panasonic system in their offices as well, which is a real plus for our operations - it definitely facilitates exchanges and our workload.”

“But it’s not only for the Olympic Games itself, it’s for human resources - the HR department uses it to communicate with potential candidates. The Olympic Broadcasting Services also use it in their Madrid offices, so it’s used throughout the entire organisation.”

“It’s very easy, it’s not complicated and it doesn’t take very long to start a meeting, so the IOC is doing whatever it can to facilitate the use of this technology.”

“We've gone from a conference call to a video call. We see it as a step forward, a step we want to take wherever we can.”