Global fashion brand Tommy Hilfiger is using a new video conferencing system to reduce time and money spent on travel while also shrinking its carbon footprint, according to to AV Magazine.
According to the Magazine, the company found that getting approval for a design idea was troublesome when its decision makers were located in offices around the globe. Instead of time-consuming flights, the company's video conferencing technology creates a "virtual fitting room" connecting Tommy Hilfiger offices in Amsterdam, New York, Hong Kong and Toyko. More locations will soon be added to the list.
The real-time collaboration allows the company to bring new products to the market faster than ever, reduce travel costs and lower greenhouse gas emissions, even as employees continue to adjust to the technology. "Most of our people are using videoconferencing for the first time," Mike Day, chief information officer for Tommy Hilfiger, told the magazine. "They are used to travelling to meetings or having conference calls, so it is quite a change of culture."
The growing cost of business travel will continue to place an added incentive for companies to use lower-cost web conferencing. The 2009 American Express Business and Travel Forecast estimated that the cost of an average business trip was set to increase by roughly 15 percent.