Sci-Tech

Microsoft would like to assign notes to work meetings

If you rated your last meeting 10 out of 10, how much would you give for it? You would definitely not be objective! For this reason, Microsoft has been working on an application since 2018 to measure the quality of meetings more neutrally. In either case, this can be read in the patents listed on the GeekWire site. This tool, known as the Meeting Insight Computing System, is not only used to assign a score, but also to draw conclusions to do better next time.

Use body language to rate meetings

How does that work in practice? This computer system, which is particularly equipped with artificial intelligence, can analyze the emotions of the participants using body language. Is the person smiling? Does she check her phone regularly? Is she participating? The tool also takes into account other parameters such as the number of participants, the time of the meeting, the temperature, etc. All this through video for a virtual meeting or with the help of cameras and sensors in the case of a face-to-face meeting.

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Image: Microsoft Diagram / USPTO

With all of this information, the tool should not only be able to assess the effectiveness of a meeting, but also offer the keys to running a meeting effectively. He can then suggest other times, more suitable locations, or alternative people to make the next meeting more effective.

Eight meeting hours on average per week

Reducing the number of meetings and making them more productive is a problem many companies want to solve. Especially when we know that an office worker spends an average of 8 hours a week in meetings, according to a study by Barco and Circle Research in 2019. Worse still, according to the same study, 56% of respondents consider this period to be useless. This means that there is an emergency!

However, increasing work productivity has become one of Microsoft’s priorities. The digital giant is expanding the tools to work better as a team, especially through the team application. The latter is equipped with several options to make video conference meetings more efficient, e.g. For example, the “Together” mode, the option to raise your hand or even the option to blur the background.

Productivity at the expense of personal data?

However, the latest innovation has been the subject of controversy. This is a tool for calculating productivity when using Microsoft 365 Suite software. The problem? Some fear the tool could be used to monitor employees. However, the multinational IT company defended itself, stating that the data can be anonymized. However, this option is only available to managers. This isn’t the first time a Microsoft tool has been pinned for privacy concerns: in May 2020, Teams joined Zoom and other applications on the bad student bench to manage personal data.

Microsoft could run into similar problems with its new meeting note-taking tool. Especially since the use of cameras in the offices makes the application look like Big Brother. Rest assured: the new innovation is still only a patent and is therefore far from being commercialized.

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