The shift to hybrid work environments has presented unique challenges for effective communication and collaboration across remote and in-person teams. While video conferencing tools have enabled continued connectivity, many organizations are still grappling with optimizing their audio visual setups to deliver high quality experiences for remote participants. With both in-office and remote employees now the norm, it is critical to establish best practices for technology, room design, and facilitation to support hybrid work.

This blog will outline key considerations and recommendations for configuring audio visual systems to engage hybrid teams. The focus will be on practical steps that organizations of any size or budget can take to elevate remote participation and foster more inclusive collaboration. With the right setup and adherence to best practices, hybrid meetings do not need to be second-class compared to in-person interactions.

Camera Placement and Views

One of the most important factors for remote inclusion is ensuring all participants, whether in the room or dialing in virtually, have a good view. This starts with strategic camera placement that frames the space appropriately. As a general rule:

Position cameras at eye level for a natural view of facial expressions and body language. Mount cameras on walls or tripods rather than tables where heads will be cut off.

Use multiple cameras where possible to provide different angles, especially in larger rooms. Wide-angle and overview shots help remote users get a sense of the full space and activity.

Consider a dedicated presentation camera trained on any shared screen or whiteboard content in addition to people cameras. This allows remote followers to easily view content being discussed.

Check camera views from a remote perspective before meetings to test sight lines and make adjustments. Virtual meeting platforms usually have an option to "join as guest" and see the remote view.


Lighting is another crucial factor for remote participants to clearly see faces and nonverbal cues. Both natural and artificial lighting should be considered:

Leverage available window light where possible by facing people toward the light source. Drawing blinds or curtains may be needed to avoid backlighting.

Use lighting that washes the entire space evenly without shadows or glare. Task and accent lighting focused on faces is ideal over overhead lighting alone.

Make lighting adjustments as needed based on time of day - daylight raises different challenges than evening meetings under lamps. Flexibility is key.

Consider adding extra adjustable lighting such as ring lights or panels aimed at participants if the space is dark to ensure clear visibility for remote viewers.

Audio Setup

Just as essential as clear video is high quality audio transmission for remote listeners. A few best practices:

Use a speakerphone or conference phone with omnidirectional microphones positioned in the center of the table or room rather than individual mics which can pickup interference.

Enable active noise cancellation features if available and close windows/doors to limit external noise distractions for those calling in.

Speakers should use a dedicated microphone worn on their person rather than the room microphones while presenting to minimize echo or distortion.

Test the audio setup ahead of meetings connecting remotely to identify any issues like feedback or muffled voices. Make adjustments as needed.

Room Setup and Etiquette

Beyond technology, room layout and meeting facilitation have a large impact on the hybrid experience:

Arrange seating and cameras so participants are facing each other for more natural interaction whether remote or in-person.

Clearly define discussion areas versus separate areas for side conversations which remote members cannot participate in easily.

Establish meeting norms for muting when not speaking, limiting interjections, and involving remote attendees in discussions and decisions.

Have virtual meeting controls centralized for easy host management of chat, reactions, screen sharing etc.

Consider movable whiteboards or monitors remote participants can " virtually" interact with using annotation tools.

Testing and Continuous Improvement

Taking time to thoroughly test configurations before meetings and soliciting feedback after is key to continually improving the hybrid experience over time:

Hold test sessions connecting from different devices and locations to ensure quality from all perspectives.

Observe meetings remotely and have in-room hosts watch back recordings to identify issues like lighting, participant visibility etc.

Conduct surveys of remote meeting participants to understand pain points and preferences for future enhancements.

Review feedback to prioritize equipment upgrades, room redesigns, or process changes on a regular basis. No setup is perfect at first pass.


As hybrid work becomes the norm, audio visual systems play an enormous role in cultivating inclusion across physical and virtual modes of communication. With diligent focus on camera positioning, lighting quality, audio functionality, meeting facilitation habits and continuous improvement efforts, organizations can deliver high quality experiences regardless of attendance location. Strong hybrid collaboration relies on established best practices to foster natural engagement, understanding and productivity for all.

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