Videoconferencing as strategic management tool in new organisational forms : the case of TELP / Ian Peter Saunderson
Saunderson, Ian Peter
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This study examines new organisational environments and all the environmental variables that are involved in the adoption and implementation of new communication technology. This includes structures within the organisation, as well as social communication networks. Social communication networks determine the levels of measurement of processes associated with managerial practises and policies regarding videoconferencing implementation. Videoconferencing as a communication management tool should take into account the numerous applications that videoconferencing hold, but should at the same time consider all the implications for management. Communication managers should show a level of sensitivity on interpersonal relationship establishment and maintenance using a videoconferencing system. Aspects that should be attended to include alteration of verbal and non-verbal communication processes, the establishment of virtual relationships and how it impacts on the social communication network. The study utilises focus group research, social network analysis and descriptive statistics in the investigation of manifestation of above-mentioned variables in the Tertiary Education Linkages Project (TELP), which is a linkage project between the Eastern Cape Technikon and Texas Southern University. The study utilises triangulation for establishment of acceptable levels of reliability and validity. The analysis of data revealed that videoconferencing facilitates organisational communication networks on the precondition that communication networks and the communication environment are well managed. The nature of social networks reveals that it will always be in existence where human interaction is iii present, however, communication management strategies are indeed required to ensure that the quality of information disseminated over the social network contribute to sound managerial outcomes. It was furthermore established that communication management policies do not necessarily affect individuals' experience of videoconferencing, however, as a communication management tool, videoconferencing must be guided by effective communication management policies and practises for the group to be effective.
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