Top 10 Conference Call Providers for Project Meetings
written by: Francine Richards
• edited by: Jean Scheid
• updated: 12/10/2010
With the advent of working on virtual teams, conducting offsite training and managing remote employees, the need for reliable, high-quality conference call providers is essential. Read on to find the best in our top 10 list.
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Conference Calls & Project Management
Most of the meetings between project team members are conducted via conference calls and web meetings. Project managers meet with their project teams to obtain status updates on project tasks. They also meet with clients, project sponsors and internal management to share projected expectations and provide milestone updates. It is necessary to utilize professional conference call providers with a variety of services to accommodate these meetings.
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Top 10 Conference Call Providers
In no particular order, below are the top 10 conference call providers:
AT&T Connect- AT&T is a thoroughly established provider of telecommunications, including conference calling. AT&T Connect integrates data and video into their audio conferencing. With a full range of optional features, there isn’t much AT&T cannot give you in terms of quality and service to meet your conferencing needs.
WebEx – a Cisco product, WebEx is well-known, reliable and high quality. The “Meeting Center" offers conference call services with multi-party video conferencing, 24-hour system access, blocked entry, multiple presenter controls, a participant list, meeting recording and replay, and automated invites and RSVPs.
Conference Calls.com – A popular choice among the many conference call providers, Conference Calls.com is a basic service. With no frills, the service is easy to use and relatively inexpensive compared to other providers.
Microsoft Live Meeting – Another well-known product, Microsoft’s LiveMeeting is a leading web-meeting provider. With massive conference call capability, Live Meeting can accommodate up to 1250+ participants and offers no time limits on conference calls should your call run over the planned timeframe. You also get the excellent Microsoft customer support with this product.
Spiderphone– Spiderphone offers reservationless conference calling, simply using a PIN to start or join calls. With flexible options and low costs, Spiderphone lets your start many calls at once. There is also a web reservation system to track invitees and participants. Calls are recorded and available immediately following the end of the call. Operators are available to greet participants and offer support in emergencies at no additional charge.
AT Conference – AT Conference boasts reservationless conference calling, 800 numbers, reporting that breaks out each call by code, call recording and reliable sound quality of their phone lines. Services are immediately available upon signup so you can have your first call the same day you sign up.
LotusLive Meetings – LotusLive Meetings is IBM’s entry into the conference calling product market. It has all of the major features: participant list, invites and RSVP management, recording and replay, video conferencing and unlimited conference call duration. The showstopper is that LotusLive can accommodate up to 1,999 participants, making it the service that holds the largest participants.
Free Audio Conferencing – This company offers free audio conferencing services for up to 100 callers per conference call. Additional costs are incurred for larger calls and add-on services such as call recording and operator assistance. This company will work well for start-up and small companies.
InterCall– InterCall, who acquired Genesys Conferencing, provides audio, web and video conferencing that can be customized to meet your project management needs. Instant conference services are available with easy-to-use features and personalized messaging for all participants.
PGI– Premier Global Services Inc., commonly referred to as PGI, is solution for world-wide conference calling needs. They boast over 100 local and international toll-free access points in every major business city. Global calling and a fast network are the primary features of this conference call provider.