How do I book a video conference?

Email mediaservicesvc@manchester.ac.uk with the date, time and how many people will be attending in Manchester and a member of staff will get back to you confirming you booking location along with the connection documentation required for the external participants.

How can people outside of the University connect to a Zoom meeting?

There are several ways to connect to a Zoom meeting. These are:

  • Web browser/desktop app
  • Mobile app
  • IP/SIP/H.323
  • Telephone

Will there be a technician on hand to help with the set up of the video conference?

Yes. Whenever one of our dedicated video conference suites is booked out we ensure a technical member of staff is on hand to help get the meeting started and run through any questions you may have prior to the meeting.

Will there be a charge for using the video conferencing facilities?

There is no charge to use our dedicated video conference suites or for the hire of any portable video conference equipment. Charges will only apply when support is required outside of core hours (9am-5pm) or when requesting the larger portable kits. Charges for technician time will then apply. Please ask about these charges when requesting your booking.

Can I use Skype in the dedicate VC suites?

We do not support any other video conferencing platform other than Zoom. We tested a number of platforms out before deciding to invest in Zoom and none of the others offered the stability, security, reliability and functionality that Zoom offered. Any video conference booked via Media Services will be delivered using Zoom. If you wish to use another platform you may do so by loaning out one of our small or medium sized webcams and running the meeting without support.

Do your facilities have teleconferencing capabilities?

Zoom is a unified communications platform and as such you may ask people to connect via a telephone using our system. However we always recommend that you attempt to use the other methods of connecting (web browser, mobile app, IP/SIP) first as these are what the platform is designed for and will give you and the other participants the best overall experience. If you are concerned about using any element of the software please contact mediaservicesvc@manchester.ac.uk and we can arrange training, demos and testing with you or those wishing to connect to us from outside of the University.

If you require solely a teleconference you can book this via the teleconferencing website.

How far in advance of the meeting do I need to book?

We would always recommend you book as early as possible as a lot of our rooms do get heavily used throughout the year. When booking one of our dedicated suites we require at least 24hrs notice. This is so we can get the relevant documentation out to those who need it and perform any tests that might be required. For the booking of our portable kit we require at least 1 weeks notice in order for us to arrange a site visit, availability of hardware and availability of technicians for the set up and pack down of the equipment.

Can I connect to a video conference hosted by an external party?

We can facilitate meetings that are hosted by external parties. However these must either be Zoom meetings or meetings with IP/SIP/H.323 connectivity. If this is not possible we can host the meeting and provide the external participants with the means of connecting via any current VC method.

Are there any tips for making a meeting run smoother?

The best way to ensure your meeting runs smoothly is to prepare. We offer testing prior to meetings where we can go through any functionality that might be used during the video conference. A technician will always be on hand at the start of your meeting to support you. If something does go wrong there is no need to panic or lose faith in the technology. Most technical issues can be resolved very quickly.

Other tips include:
  • Arrive in good time for your meeting. (We can arrange for the room to be booked out 15 mins before the allotted start time).
  • Using a headset with mic where possible as this can eliminate any unwanted noise or feedback.
  • Muting you mic when not speaking during the meeting.
  • Having documents pre loaded and ready to share.
  • Upholding good meeting etiquette. (Having one person elected to chair the meeting to ensure only one person is speaking at any one time)
If you have any other questions regarding anything to do with video conferencing please email mediaservicesvc@manchester.ac.uk