Remote working: the challenges for video production
In 2019, remote working was a foreign concept. We were all happily working side-by-side in our workplaces: brainstorming ideas in the boardroom, solving problems at team meetings and enjoying chats with colleagues at the water cooler.
But in 2020 the world changed. The coronavirus pandemic swept across the globe and we suddenly had to embrace working from home.
Home offices were makeshift at first, with some people working on laptops balanced on their laps as they sat on their beds. But as the impact of the virus worsened, we’ve all had to look at longer term solutions.
In many cases, getting a suitable chair, desk and eye-level monitor was the easy part. Reimagining work processes that previously involved face-to-face collaboration and access to technical experts was trickier.
Video production is a classic example. So when remote working and video production have to go hand-in-hand, what does everyone need?
Phase 1: it’s all about getting up and running.
Phase 2: it’s all about sharing, collaborating and distributing faster and easier.
One option is virtual workstations but they require business-grade bandwidth to work and very few remote workers have that at home.
In the office it was easy enough to drop in on the editor to review something, call IT if you needed a file reformatted, or bump into the client services director to ask for an opinion. That’s all changed.
What hasn’t changed are deadlines and it has become increasingly difficult to share and collaborate on content. That’s why working on a cloud platform with proxies (generally 1% the size of an original piece of content) is the key to collaborating on video remotely — it streamlines the process of sharing, reviewing, annotating, searching and approving video content.
Technology needs to be an enabler — and uncomplicated
Working with video has traditionally been managed by editors, camera operators and engineers. But it doesn’t need to be.
Just as the UI of a smartphone can mask incredible computer power, the UI of video processing platform like Overcast can mask a lot of tech.
If you need your content to distribute on the web, mobile, social, in-store screens, broadcast TVs (it doesn’t matter what) then it should be as easy as pushing a button and automating all the tech processes. And it is!
Fast and efficient Review and Approvals
Reviewing and approving content was often the slowest part of the video lifecycle. Whether it is new content being created, or archive being reworked, getting senior eyeballs on the content can slow the process to a snail’s pace.
The concern in relation to remote working is whether that review and approvals process would be even slower. But not so — depending on the platform you choose.
Some companies use Slack and Teams, which are fine for Word docs but are not designed for video — because when you really want to make changes you need to be able to draw on the screen or log the timecode.
This is all automated on Overcast — and you can also audit when the reviewer has screened the content.
In the second part of this blog post, we’ll look at how to make metadata work for you, how to increase speed to market, and the importance of security in a remote working landscape.
So tune in then and in the meantime enjoy not having to commute to work!
Digital transformation is the integration of digital technologies into all areas of a business, fundamentally changing how that business works.
Video is core to digital transformation. It changes the status quo when it comes to communicating internally with staff and externally with partners and customers.
Video Content-as-a-Service (VCaaS) makes video accessible to all. It reduces cost, reduces the time it takes to get content to market and increases revenue opportunities.
If businesses and enterprises want to truly embrace video at the heart of their organizations, then the following 8 principles should future-proof processes while enabling speed and scale.
1. Video is a collaborative business
Creating professional video content is complex. From a 1-minute product video to a 2-hour movie, there is one workflow that is core to creation and often forgotten – collaboration, review and approvals.
Collaborating on content was traditionally done in an edit suite with an editor. That is no longer the case. We can now do this remotely – even on a smartphone – making it possible to accelerate the production process.
3. Avoid the BIG HIT when managing legacy technology
You may already have a DAM (digital asset management platform), a MAM (media asset management platform) a PAM (production asset management platform) a CMS (content management system) an ECM (enterprise content management system) or another 3-letter acronym. And the thought of bringing on new technology fills you with dread.
But what if:
You integrated with the existing tech stack to get moving quickly
Roll out the new system incrementally without having to suffer the pain of a “big hit”
Use simpler tools so that more employees can manage the content
Scale your operations to be able to deliver video content to new channels from a single point of truth
Ultimately shutter the systems that you no longer need
4. Service infrastructure needs to be modular
Content management is changing daily. It is no longer possible for organisations to manage large monolithic infrastructures along with siloed services – it’s simply not scalable.
To future-proof your technology roadmap, new infrastructures should be cloud-native, API-orientated solutions that orchestrate micro-services and are able to be containerised on-premise.
The separation of content from the presentation layer is key – it means with APIs you can deliver the same content to multiple platforms without duplication.
5. Support new channels of distribution
Content is distributed everywhere, by multiple types of organisations and for multiple reasons. The number of channels, devices and methods of using video is expanding rapidly.
Content management solutions need to support all “tier 2” customer interactions including:
Immersive experiences like AR and VR
…and much more.
6. Content systems need to support the developer and business users
Developers are able to access APIs or services that allow them to maintain a “single point of truth” for the content while making it possible to easily develop new channels of distribution.
Business users have easy access to a “single pane of glass” that allows them to easily manage content across multiple channels without needing specialist training or audio-visual qualifications.
7. Use AI and Machine Learning to reduce complexities
Standardisation of video formats will not happen any time soon. Compression, frame rates, pixels, codecs – working with video is more complicated than other file types.
New developments in AI mean that we are automating and optimizing many mundane technical tasks (like transcoding). By automating these tasks, we are expanding video management within organisations to less technical employees creating efficiencies.
We use AI and machine learning to analyse video content to allow the automatic development of subtitles, image recognition, compliance and other solutions that make it easier to search and find content.
8. Digital Transformation includes embracing video
By 2021, 90% of global organisations will rely on system integrators, agencies and channel partners to design, build and implement their digital strategies. Currently, less than 1% of eCommerce sites are video-enabled whereas virtually all social is now video.
Organisations use video for everything from Marketing to HR, Product, Corporate Communications, Training and much more. It is no longer the role of the IT department or if you are lucky, the audio-visual department to manage video content. Everyone who operates a PC, laptop or Mac can manage video just as they would images or word documents.
Businesses need to keep changing and innovating in order to be competitive. Such transformation in the digital age involves the integration of digital technologies into all areas of an enterprise, fundamentally changing how that business works.
The tech world is a world of acronyms and here’s another one for your collection: VCaaS. It stands for Video Content-as-a-Service and this is how it will revolutionise your video management processes:
What VCaaS will do for you
1. Improve collaboration
Collaboration, review and approvals are essential to the workflow, regardless of what kind of video/film content you are creating. But if your team members are spread out in different locations, getting approval from all stakeholders can takes ages, thus delaying time to market. So, facilitating collaboration, review and approvals remotely is the key to speed to market.
2. Ease the pain of legacy technology
Most businesses already have a digital asset management (DAM) platform (or its close relations: MAM, PAM, CMS or ECM*). But does it do what you need it to or is it slowing you down and costing you money?
Legacy technology that was adapted to work with the cloud rather than being “cloud-first” is definitely one of the biggest headaches for businesses. But if you integrate it with technology that will gradually replace it with a simpler, more effective platform that delivers video content to new channels from a “single point of truth”, you can scale to your heart’s content.
3. Support new channels of distribution
People want to consume video content on the platforms and devices of their choice…and the choice is extensive. New channels are coming on stream all the time; for example, TikTok has recently seen a surge in popularity as the go-to video app for young people.
Businesses need to be able to support all “tier 2” customer interactions, including sales, social, apps, partner networks, in-store experiences, immersive experiences like AR and VR, and much more.
4. Make video less complex through AI and Machine Learning
With the ever-increasing number of channels and ways to use video outlined above, it could be a nightmare trying to output a video in dozens of different formats due to compression, frame rates, pixels, codecs, etc. But recent developments mean AI can take care of the mundane technical tasks like transcoding. Yippee! This means that non-techies can execute such tasks, which will create efficiencies for your business.
In addition, AI and machine learning can analyse video content to allow the automatic creation of subtitles, image recognition, compliance and other solutions that make it easier to search and find content.
5. Happy developers and happy business users
Gone are the days (thank goodness!) when you had to have a masters degree in coding, technology or editing in order to be able to create, manage, collaborate on, or output video.
Now, developers can access APIs/services that facilitates them to maintain a “single point of truth” for the content; and — as an added bonus — it’s possible to easily develop new channels of distribution.
Business users don’t need specialist training or audio-visual qualifications: they’ll have easy access to a “single pane of glass” that allows them to easily manage content across multiple channels.
Transformation through VCaaS
So, to transform your business while embracing video as a business tool, why not request a demo of Overcast to see how Video Content-as-a-Service will work hand-in-hand with your DAM to save your business time and money, and will save you a bucketload of stress?
In 2018, the global Enterprise Video market size was US$3.68 billion and it is expected to reach US$10.4 billion by the end of 2025 (MarketWatch). Staggering, eh?
This continuing explosion in the popularity of video has made it a must-have tool for publishers, broadcasters, brands, creatives, agencies and, of course, video tech companies.
When teams in an organisation produce video content (and it really doesn’t matter how much), they need to be able to easily access it, re-use it, collaborate on it, and share it on various platforms in different formats. But video content is complex so existing content management systems don’t cope with it well and can be very problematic when you want to scale your operations.
In Gartner’s report on how to use Content-as-a-Service (CaaS), it identifies the key challenges as:
New channels emerge and, to support them, we create new silos of content, causing fragmentation and increasing complexity;
Businesses looking to move away from monolithic architectures and large, single-vendor implementations must choose a home for their customer-facing content.
Content-as-a-Service vs DAM
These challenges may not be solvable through the digital asset management (DAM) system — in fact, your DAM may well be your biggest problem. So let’s take a look at five ways in which CaaS is fundamentally different from a DAM:
CaaS is in the cloud — DAM started on premise and is legacy technology;
CaaS provides micro-services — it’s not a monolith;
Easy to use — no need to be a librarian or highly trained;
Low cost — you only pay for what you need;
It’s a service — not a product. We describe Services in what they do. Whereas we describe Products by how they look.
Now here’s the techie stuff
Content-as-a-Service is the creation, management and delivery of content via a headless approach, usually, an API serving JSON, decoupled from presentation tiers. In digital commerce, this often also combines elements of PIM and WCM.
Er…thanks for that, Gartner. For those of us that don’t speak techie, could you draw us a picture?
Uses of Content-as-a-Service
Enhance and improve existing content channels without re-platforming.
Extend content to new channels while retaining consistency and continuity.
Consolidate multiple content silos into a single, cross-channel service.
Deliver part of an API-oriented architectural approach for new digital initiatives.
Solve the problem
CaaS provides an emerging solution to the problem of managing video content. Some include DAM capabilities and/or video integration. We’d be delighted to explain more about how Content-as-a-Service will work with your existing DAM to help you save time and money on video management. Just click here to start the conversation.
Is your video content stored on hard drives? How can teams collaborate on it? How much technical expertise is needed to manage it? How can you find the videos clips you need? Are the files sizes too big to handle? Are you duplicating clips unnecessarily? Can you distribute in lots of different formats? Does your video platform integrate with your other technologies? Is your video strategy scalable?
Solution: Video Content-as-a-Service (VCaaS)
The answer to all of the above — and the secret that will save you from major headaches — is VCaaS. Sounds like it could be a different type of ailment, just as debilitating as a migraine, doesn’t it?! Well, VCaaS stands for Video Content-as-a-Service and it has the Midas touch in terms of managing video.
So let’s look at what VCaaS is and how it can solve your problems.
In simple terms, Overcast — which is a VCaaS provider — facilitates you to manage video (and other digital content) from a single platform and allows you to easily integrate your existing technology.
No more silos
Up until recently, video was siloed in organizations and was managed by engineers and editors. Now, with advances in automation and artificial intelligence services, video can be managed across an organisation by employees with little or no technical knowledge.
The new distribution landscape
There are now so many channels through which video is delivered — broadcast, web, social, apps, affiliate networks, in-store, stadiums. Previously, when organizations introduced new distribution channels, they would also create new content pipelines. But this led to silos and file duplication, which is a costly way of working. Now we can work from a “single source of truth” and manage it with a “single pane of glass.”
Facing the challenge of scaling up
Nowadays, all businesses are exercising their inner Hollywood — financial institutions, multinationals, publishers, sports organisations and enterprises (to name but a few) are publishing more and more quality video content because consumers demand it. But the challenge is being able to easily access it, re-use it, collaborate on it, share it or sell it on different platforms. Video content is complex so it’s not surprising that existing content management systems struggle with it…and this impedes scalability.
Speed to market
The cloud has revolutionised the way we create, manage and distribute video. But legacy technologies are hampering progress. It can be difficult, expensive and time-consuming to swap out a legacy system. So the good news is that Overcast integrates with your existing partners and platforms, allowing you to get started quickly. Then, if you’d like to, you can replace those systems naturally over time.
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