How many times when an external vendor sends you a conference-call calendar invite for the following morning, do you try to access the conference call via your iPhone or Android device, only to realize that you don’t have the app installed, leaving you to frantically try to dial all the numbers and codes to get into the conference call?
At work your company normally has a specific conferencing platform they use whether it is Zoom, GoToMeeting, or another vendor, and you’ve probably already set up the appropriate app on your phone. But when it comes to working with various other conferencing vendors, it requires some preparation. Thankfully, there are two tips that can make you getting into that important call with your client less painful.
Formatting the conference number
The easiest and quickest way to access a conference bridge when you haven’t previously installed the associative app is to dial into the conference call. What you want to do is format the conference number so that you can literally click on it from your iPhone or Android device easily.
If you see an invite which includes the conference number, bridge code and possibly another code, format the number as “+1 (872) 240-3212,0000#.” We can pre-format our dial-in numbers with the use of a “comma” (,) for pausing between the dial number and entering the next code, and entering “pound” (#) after the code.
If there is another code you need to enter, you can include another “pause” followed by the code and “pound.” This way you can conveniently enter the conference call without needing to install another app or having to fumble through entering all the extra codes to verify yourself.
You can also enter the number in your keypad, using the same technique before pressing the dial-button, to bypass the verification process.
Use the Web App
Another quick tip: If you haven’t downloaded the conference client app on your device, make use of the conferencing vendor’s web app. Companies like GoToMeeting or Skype for Business include a link to access the session via their “web app,” which you can easily do via your desktop, but should also work from your mobile device. By opting to ignore any banner that would entice you to download the app, you can get into the session more quickly.
What you miss out on by not installing the native app and instead going for the Web App, is access to specific tools within their app such as access to the whiteboard or to be able to present your video.
Another benefit of dialing in versus using the vendor’s native app lies in preserving the battery. Usually using cellular over WiFi, especially with the phone display on standby-off, saves you battery. You also won’t be sharing your video, nor viewing a video of the presenter, which saves you battery.
While it is a lot more straightforward to dial in to conference calls via their native apps, a lot of the times you get the foresight to install the app beforehand. Or it may not even be worthwhile to install a new app just for one call. Armed with the ability to format the conference number in the invite to bypass the verification process without having to enter anything or using the vendor’s web app, you can now focus on the call at hand and not have to worry about entering all the conference bridge codes by hand, waiting for the voice prompts.