Interview with Andreas Rieger, Head of Video Collaboration at Siemens AG

During our 1000th Circuit Meeting Room deployment celebration with Siemens AG we spent time with Andreas Rieger, Head of Video Collaboration at Siemens AG, and talked about the transformation impact for both users and administrators.

Andreas has worldwide responsibility for video collaboration standards at Siemens AG. In previous roles, Andreas introduced real-time collaboration at Siemens beginning in 2003 with LCS, and moving to OCS and LiveMeeting. Andreas has overseen deployment of more than 350.000 accounts by the Circuit team. He's worked in all parts of Siemens IT infrastructure since 1995.

Compared to the meeting room solutions you used before - what makes Circuit Meeting Room different, what can Circuit Meeting Room do better? 

Andreas: Previous solutions were expensive, complex and most of all never 100% integrated into the users' daily real-time communications environment. It’s important for users to be able to invite participants to meetings without knowing beforehand whether they can participate from the workplace, from home, while they travel or even from another Circuit Meeting Room. Circuit Meeting Room builds this bridge.

Regarding Circuit Meeting Room’s operation, you simply need to see it used once and you’re ready to use it yourself. It works the same everywhere and needs no special knowledge for video conference rooms.

Since standard USB peripherals are used, we can take advantage of market innovations. As cameras evolve quickly with Circuit Meeting Room we can easily upgrade the systems without having to replace the basic installation. With CMRs on the same software level and have identical functions, it means easier administration for IT support and easier adoption for users.

Do you support your users to take full advantage of Circuit Meeting Room? Have they already fully embraced the solution and what measures have you implemented to make Circuit Meeting Room as easy as possible to use?

Andreas: We use short video clips to educate users, plus we provide a one-pager overview in the rooms with Circuit Meeting Room. When we hand over a room to the customer, everything is explained in detail. By avoiding remote controls, we minimize the risk and complication from operating errors. Users simply use tools like their mobile devices or laptops to operate Circuit Meeting Room.

Starting a meeting with CMR is simple – do you agree? And if so, what's your favorite feature?

Andreas: Yes, and the mobile clients are very useful, especially when starting a Circuit Meeting Room. There’s no longer a need for a notebook. Plus, useful features like the display of the last used Circuit Meeting Room reduce further clicks and make connections faster.

Have you defined and implemented a global standard and do all global Siemens sites follow it? At the 1000th CMR event we have seen a very simple and easy to use panel for CMR – looks like that is a key element for great user experience. Tell us more about it.

Andreas: We train our interior decorators who build the rooms about principles like restricting to a few but good peripherals and that rooms should be built optically clean, without any visible wiring. Remote controls are also to be avoided. These easy OneTouch panels have proven themselves useful with Circuit Meeting Room.

What have you done in regard to the adoption of CMR and change management? How do you support your end users?

Andreas: It’s quite simple - good things happen and the word gets around!

Do you measure the usage of meeting rooms? Can you quantify the impact on business results for business owners?

Andreas: There are very detailed reports. The usage is constantly increasing and is far above the usage of the systems before Circuit Meeting Room.

In February we celebrated CMR No 1000 at Siemens AGHow many are currently rolled out and are the plans for the future?

Andreas: 1400 are already installed. I think the plan is to have  2000 by the end of 2019.

What use case scenarios and integrations have you implemented already that leverage the power of video conferencing and do you go beyond in regards to smart workflows and meeting management with CMR?  

Andreas: We now cover the whole spectrum. Meetings, personal interviews, job interviews, scrum meetings, TownHalls, trainings.

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About Andreas Rieger

Head of Video Collaboration at Siemens AG
Andreas Rieger is responsible for video collaboration standards worldwide at Siemens AG. In previous roles at Siemens, Andreas introduced real-time collaboration starting 2003 with LCS, later OCS and LiveMeeting until today - where more than 350.000 accounts have been deployed by the Circuit team. He worked in all parts of Siemens IT infrastructure since 1995.

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