Certify or Die

Vic Bhagat, Q-SYS
(Image credit: Future)

Over the past several years, we have witnessed significant shifts in the modern workplace, where hybrid environments with dispersed teams rely heavily on a seamless experience to effectively collaborate. With varying room sizes and needs, it is important to select hardware and software that works seamlessly with your UC platform of choice, while offering enhanced room features and capabilities to enable meeting equity for both in-room and remote participants. To help simplify selection, many UC platform manufacturers have established device certification programs to help ensure these devices deliver a consistent and optimized end user experience.

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These certification programs are typically a two-phase process consisting of objective and subjective testing. Objective testing is completed by an independent lab that operates many tests depending on the device type and intended use. For example, audio tests typically include single talk, double talk, echo cancellation, and HID sync functionality. After passing the objective testing, the devices also must pass real-world subjective testing to gain certification.

Flexible Meeting Space

The modern workplace relies on a seamless experience for collaboration within hybrid environments. (Image credit: Q-SYS)

While most UC platforms do not block the use of any device, uncertified devices will vary in performance and may increase support needs. The benefit of using a certified device is not only to ensure a high-quality, reliable, and optimized experience—but also knowing the device is supported by both the device vendor and the UC platform. This eliminates the guesswork and support time, so IT teams can gain greater efficiency by spending less time troubleshooting.

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So, what does device certification mean for the end user? It means a consistent, repeatable user experience regardless of room complexity. It is easier to find certified solutions for typical small, medium, and large rooms, but for high-impact spaces it is critical to select certified solutions that meet the AV needs of the space to deliver an elevated user experience. In addition, selecting a certified system with advanced features like automatic camera switching, multizone audio, and video distribution enhances meeting equity and delivers an elevated collaboration experience.

While most UC platforms do not block the use of any device, uncertified devices will vary in performance and may increase support needs.

The most significant factor to consider when selecting solutions is how the room will be used. If it is a multipurpose space, you will want to make sure there are control and automation features to transform spaces as needed to accommodate different functions. Imagine taking a common area like a cafeteria and converting it into a hybrid collaboration environment for an all-hands meeting. The ability to reenergize existing spaces provides greater value by enabling flexibility for the future. By using certified devices, you can be confident that the room will work as intended when switching between modes.  

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With employees working in a hybrid capacity, we must deliver exceptional experiences for in-person and remote workers. This means the spaces where people come together must be equipped with the right technology to serve in-person and remote needs for every meeting type such as company training, all-hands meetings, and spontaneous collaboration. And with certified solutions, you can have confidence in your technology investment.

Vic Bhagat

Vic Bhagat is the principal, alliances and ecosystem, for Q-SYS.