Quantum - Creación de contenidos - Content Creation - Almacenamiento - Storage

Workflow issues and technical bottlenecks are all part of today’s production concerns, but what can be done to fix these? Skip Levens, Product Marketing Director, Media and Entertainment at Quantum, breaks down the top challenges and explains how content producers and creatives can address these challenges head on.

Today’s broadcast industry is a marvel of technological innovation and human creativity. TV shows can stay on air for 24 hours without a single break. Many programmes manage to do so for years while still appealing to mainstream viewers and advertisers. It’s a high-pressure environment with tighter budgetary restraints each year and ever-increasing creative demands. The stakes are even higher during key global events such as the Covid-19 pandemic, which completely disrupted existing production workflows.

However, this past year, global video consumption and demand for engaging, high-resolution content increased by more than 60 percent. Video has become the new normal and the most effective means to entertain, teach and interact with audiences, thanks to binge-worthy series, immersive movies and animations available across a range of OTT streaming services.

This does come at a cost. With demand for fresh content, tighter budgets and bigger global teams, producers are now forced to rethink how they create and deliver content. The focus now is on how to build more flexible and reliable workflows that allow production teams to maintain a hold of the raw content ingest workflows and quickly access long-term archives from anywhere at any time. Speeding production and allowing teams to think more creatively are critical factors too, so content producers don’t have it easy.

But luckily there are ways to make content and collaboration easier by following these simple steps.

Production requirements are changing

First things first, all creatives involved with production work need to get on board with the realisation that workflow requirements are changing for the better. For years we’ve spoken about tighter budgets and more content demanded by viewers–generally having less but doing more – and the good news is that technology and cutting-edge best practices help us all do that.

Video has become the new normal and the most effective means to entertain, teach and interact with audiences

The pandemic is also a reminder that our industry needs to prepare itself for flexible working, more efficient remote collaboration, the ability to produce content and manage a project from anywhere. Team members need to be able to work seamlessly with content and collaborate with their colleagues—no matter where their colleagues are located- during the editing stages of production. Broadcast companies, post-production houses, corporate video departments, and animation and VFX studios all require speedy media intake and constant access to content across their entire production and asset management processes. Moreover, organisations must also preserve content for future use and protect it from potential damage or loss and for ready access to start new content packages, retrospectives and more.

El Pais Video - Edicion de video - Carlos Cordoba - RedaccionSetting up collaborative teams is easier said than done

It’s no secret that the media industry moves at a breakneck pace. Producing high-quality material in a timely manner is never a one-person task; it necessitates collaboration between several departments. When you consider how many individuals are involved from beginning to end, it’s clear to understand how building a streamlined workflow might be difficult.

Creating new teams, pursuing new projects, organising live events, or collaborating on production can be exacting if the production environment isn’t agile enough. It is essential that production environments allow for change and evolution. They must also be able to accommodate for the growing number of team members who may be based in different locations around the world and use a range of operating platforms and applications. Above all, a production environment should be adaptable – ready to set up quickly and efficiently to support the production and collaboration needs of the team.

Disjointed workflows can be costly

As the demand for content generation increases, so does the pressure on production teams. Teams across the industry are primarily focused on just completing projects and deliverables and moving on to the next one. As a result, workflows can become disjointed, meaning potentially valuable, raw content can be easily lost or difficult to manage. This lack of integration can pose serious problems to a team’s overall productivity as they waste time unnecessarily looking for what they need. To help tackle this problem, companies need to take an active approach when it comes to controlling content sprawl.

The main challenge for production companies is how and where to store their ever-growing content and project archives.

Companies must ensure that they have a clear vision across the content in their entire organisation – that their operations are in a connected, shared storage environment and have a file system with built-in data movers to capture content onto a single platform. This approach will not only enable companies to have clear visibility across the entire workflow, but it will also facilitate finding and managing content.

Creación contenidos - Quantum - Almacenamiento - Storage - Content CreationKeeping up with ever-growing content archives

When it comes to storing content, it’s easy to fall into bad habits. There’s often a tendency to move files off shared storage to offline systems thinking ‘I’ll remember where I put that’, particularly when large content and project archives are involved. However, this quick ‘solution’ often creates more problems for production teams. By transitioning files to offline systems, it removes the ability to quickly and easily access content for new workflows or reuse for other projects.

So, the main challenge for production companies is how and where to store their ever-growing content and project archives. To accommodate for the large volumes of content and project archives, a single workflow storage platform is required that connects all the locations and types of storage where assets are required at a click of a button. To ensure seamless content flow across storage, from NVMe or SSD to HDD, tape, or cloud, the chosen platform must allow continuous access to content and enable consolidation of raw and finished content into one platform.

Choosing the right storage platform

On top of all this, there is the challenge of choosing the right storage platform. As content production increases, operations must keep up or they will simply not be able to cope with the demand. However, it is not a straightforward task. Many production companies have a hard time choosing the right storage platform that will allow them to economically scale up or out or adapt to their specific workflow needs. There’s no ‘one size fits all’ storage approach.

When it comes to selecting a storage platform, organisations need to anticipate future demands and ask the right questions to ensure that the platform they choose will evolve and adapt to ever-changing requirements.. The value of a storage platform that enables media organisations to grow and thrive should not be underestimated.

As media workflows constantly change, organisations must take appropriate action to ensure efficient and streamlined workflows are in place.

As the media industry evolves so too will the challenges it faces. The creative vision and quality of content will be what defines a brand and its audience engagement. As media workflows constantly change, organisations must take appropriate action to ensure efficient and streamlined workflows are in place. With modern storage and workflow solutions, the sky’s the limit when it comes to content production.

Skip Levens - QuantumSkip Levens

Product Marketing Director, Media and Entertainment at Quantum

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By • 14 Sep, 2022
• Section: Storage, media management, grandstands