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A Sound Chamber

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A Sound Chamber
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A Sound Chamber

Vermont’s Okemo Valley Regional Chamber of Commerce Relies on Yamaha’s Portable and Easy-to-Use Conferencing Solutions to Conduct Clear Meetings Anywhere

The Okemo Valley Regional Chamber of Commerce (OVRCC) serves 11 towns and surrounding communities in south-central Vermont. With year-round activities and attractions, residents can experience the best of Vermont within Okemo Valley in all four seasons.

Because OVRCC assists such a large area within Vermont, meetings often cannot be held in person, or they are hybrid events, with members joining in person as well as remotely. Added to the challenge, these meetings take place in different locations, from townhall meeting rooms to member businesses. To support their virtual meeting place, the OVRCC regularly conducts meetings using unified communications applications such as Microsoft Teams and Zoom.

The chamber had to rely on microphones and speakers built into the laptops and computers being used to host meetings, which are only meant for single-person use, not professional, multi-person meetings. After complaints of missed information due to being unable to hear all meeting participants properly, the chamber quickly realized that to hold successful, productive meetings and encourage engagement with remote participants, they needed a UC audio solution designed to capture and play meeting audio with crisp clarity.

The chamber turned to Yamaha Unified Communications for help. Whatever solution they chose had to be simple to use, portable, and easy to setup solution while also providing a satisfying and productive audio experience for both ends of the discussion. Because the group was not meeting in a standard conference room, they also needed to be able to transport audio equipment to different meeting locations.

Working with Yamaha, the organization learned about two solutions from Yamaha that answered their exact requirements. The first was the Yamaha YVC-200 USB & Bluetooth® Speakerphone. The YVC-200 is ideal for meetings where three to four local participants. It features a rechargeable battery with up to 10 hours of use, or more when connected to a computer or laptop via USB; plug-and-play, compact design to start meetings with zero troubleshooting; and a protective travel pouch. The feature set was the perfect combo to facilitate the chamber’s smaller meetings, allowing the members to bring the unit to different sites and setup easily and quickly.

For larger meetings, such as membership meetings, with up to 30 onsite participants, the chamber needed a solution capable of engaging all members and capturing their commentary. Again, portability and easy setup was critical. At the direction of Yamaha’s sales and engineering team, the chamber selected the Yamaha YVC-1000 USB speakerphone and Bluetooth conference phone. The YVC-1000 features a separate speaker and microphone units, which allows microphones to be placed and moved around the table or room and the speaker in a central location. For the chamber, they selected a total of three microphones, which provides ample coverage of larger meeting areas with more participants. The powerful speaker allowed all members in the room to hear remote participant commentary much easier.

Since the OVRCC started using the Yamaha conference phones, meeting efficiency has dramatically increased, and the membership has appreciated being able to hear and be heard. Meetings are no longer disrupted or delayed due to audio issues and repetition of items that may have been missed. Remote participants have commented on how they feel part of the sessions and how they no longer must strain to hear commentary.

“Yamaha helped our organization come together seamlessly, whether joining in-person and remotely,” said Carol Lighthall, Executive Director OVRCC. “It’s incredibly difficult to overlook bad audio when you’re trying to communicate new ideas and promote new business activity, but with good audio, we’re stronger and more inspired to elevate our services.”