Guidelines for participants to virtual meetings
This article is an extract of the Participation guidelines for virtual meetings.ppt, published in April 2020
In this article
This article is relevant for:
Participants to virtual meetings
Before the virtual meeting
- Register for the meeting as usual through the ISO Meetings. Note that only registered members of a committee or working group can participate in an ISO meeting, and sharing meeting access with ineligible participants is not permitted.
- Request any final changes to the agenda before the stated deadlines.
- For committee meetings, confirm with your Mirror Committee who will serve as the Head of Delegation (HoD), who will speak on behalf of their national delegates and may invite other delegates to speak. Make sure that the Committee Manager is informed as to who has been designated as the Head of Delegation.
- Work out a communications plan among your delegates to be used during the virtual meeting. Do not use the meeting chat function for private communications to coordinate views among your delegation members. Use other tools such as text, WhatsApp, etc.
Meeting notices are required 8 weeks in advance for plenary virtual meetings and 4 weeks for working group virtual meetings.
30 minutes before the virtual meeting
- Select a quiet location, away from pets, children and other distractions. Turn off TV/music.
- Test your connection well in advance. Aim to connect to the meeting 10-15 minutes beforehand to ensure it starts on time – See ISO Quick Guide to Zoom Meetings.
- Ensure mute is selected when joining to avoid background noise – all participants should enter a meeting on mute and put on a headset.
- If your meeting is expected to have high attendance or there are problems with bandwidth, turn off the video/camera function.
- If you are co-located with another participant, consider connecting with a single Zoom entry.
- Consider downloading the documents relevant to the meeting (agenda, draft document, table of comments, etc.) and have them ready for when the meeting starts.
- Be prepared when your agenda item or technical contribution comes up during the meeting. Heads of Delegation should be prepared to describe national positions when necessary.
- Ensure your full name – first name and surname – is provided on the Zoom participant area and consider adding national body affiliation or liaison association and role (e.g. John SMITH, ANSI, HoD). This will help the Committee Manager capture attendance accurately.
To do this, click on your name on the Participants list, select 'More', then 'Rename' to make your modifications.
During the virtual meeting
- If you are late in joining the call, use the chat function to announce your arrival and wait for the meeting manager to recognize you, or wait for a break.
- If you have technology issues or need call details - contact someone you know who is on the call other than the Committee Manager or Convenor. They are likely to be involved in starting the call and may not be checking emails, text messages, etc.
- If your sound quality is low, consider hanging up and using the 'Call Back' function.
- In a committee meeting, start by identifying your affiliation (national body or organization) and your name. In a working group meeting, only say your name.
- Use ‘Raise Hand’ function first before speaking. Zoom maintains an effective queue for this.
- Speak one at a time, be brief, clear and speak slowly.
- Mute your line when not speaking.
- Do not put the conference call on 'hold' to take another call – particularly in the event you have 'hold' music that all participants will be able to hear. Please consider hanging up to take the other call, and re-dial back into the ISO meeting afterward.
- When voting/commenting, follow instructions given by the Committee Manager/Convenor – using the Yes/No function on Zoom, or using the chat function on the electronic meeting tool to indicate:
The national body or liaison organization you represent.
Your voting position, e.g. “BSI: yes” or “JISC: no” to ensure that the votes are correctly counted by the committee leadership.
It is preferred that only the Heads of Delegation in a committee meeting use the chat function if there are many participants, to ensure the Committee Manager has enough control over discussion flow.
After the virtual meeting
- Share your experience with us when you conduct web meetings, as your feedback will help us improve this guidance document. Feel free to share through the post-meeting survey and your Technical Programme Manager (TPM).
A feedback survey has been incorporated into ISO Meetings and will automatically be sent to participants after the meeting.
ISO/TC 301/WG 15 has been using the ISO Virtual standards development process (IVP) through a pilot for a year. Useful feedback and information on their experience is available here: