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Pull Your Chairs (or Phone Lines) Together
November 29, 2011 @ 10:01 AM | By Christina Todisco

Last month I wrote about one of the great features of our reservationless conferencing service, Record & Playback. Another handy feature is Sub-conference. Have you ever tried it or been on a conference where the leader used it? If you are simulating small-group collaboration remotely, this is a feature you definitely need take advantage of. It’s ideal for breakout sessions, small group work, sidebar discussions and training seminars.

I’ve participated in several internal training sessions where this feature has been used, and it really is just like being in a classroom and pulling your chairs together with a few other people to work on a project. All the trainer had to do was tell us what our sub-conference numbers were and the phone commands to move our lines into the sub-conference. Within a few seconds, I was in a separate ‘room’ with my co-workers and we were able to complete our project. Our trainers were using a web conference, so when it was time for us to go back to the main conference, they just chatted a message to all the participants. Again, within a few seconds, we were all back together in the main ‘room’.

Think you might use this feature to make your conference calls more productive? Here are the instructions so you can give it a try.

Starting a sub-conference:

  1. Assign your participants to a sub-conference number between 1 and 15 (your conference call can be broken out into as many as 15 sub-conferences).
  2. Press *9 to be removed from the main conference.
  3. Press 1 to start a sub-conference.

Joining a sub-conference:

  1. Press *9 to be removed from the main conference.
  2. When prompted, enter the sub-conference number that was assigned to you.
  3. Press # to join your sub-conference.

Rejoining the main conference:
Press *9 to be placed back into the main conference.

Switching to a difference sub-conference:

  1. Press *9 to be placed back into the main conference.
  2. Press *9 again to be removed from the main conference.
  3. When prompted, enter the sub-conference number.
  4. Press # to join your sub-conference.

Returning a specific sub-conference group to the main conference:

  1. Press *9 to be placed back into the main conference.
  2. Press *9 again.
  3. Press 3 to request a specific sub-conference group to return to the main conference.

Returning everyone to the main conference:

  1. Press *9 to be placed back into the main conference.
  2. Press *9 again.
  3. Press 2 to return all participants to the main conference.

See how this works in your next team meeting or training sessions. It’s a good way to make your remote meetings more interactive and engaging so your participants will get more out of it. After you've used it, come back and let me know what you think!

Christina TodiscoChristina Todisco is a marketing manager at InterCall and has been in the conferencing industry since 2002. Christina currently provides product marketing support for InterCall’s audio services, reporting and invoice solutions and InterCall Online. When not working, Christina enjoys spending time with her husband, daughter, family and friends.

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Audio conferencing

Thanks for this post. This blog was very helpful.

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