Personally, I love the business of creating content for moving images. It’s the ultimate story format. I’m fascinated by every step of the creative process--the production process itself, how the creative teams work together and deliver these fantastical stories and of course, the stories themselves.
For the past 15 years the world of analog story telling for moving images has been changing to a digital format right before our very eyes and I’ve had a front row seat--first, as a creative professional myself and eventually as a technical specialist. This shift from analog to digital has hit its apex over the past three years. The result has culminated in a surprising twist that is proving beneficial to forward-thinking businesses. The twist you ask? IT: The New Cool.
Let me explain. Now more than ever before creative departments exist in non-creative companies. And more often than not, IT is at the helm of production infrastructures.
Here’s a couple factors why:
- Fewer corporations are hiring creative organizations to handle creative projects; instead, creative departments within corporate structures are handling these projects.
- Segmented production has turned into end-to-end production.
This didn’t used to happen but the companies where this exists today are incredibly diverse. Several of our customers, including, The Motley Fool, Billabong, Citigroup, Robert Half, WestJet and Citgo, are examples of this new trend. None of these large companies have made media part of its core business yet each share two factors that have changed how technology is purchased for its creative department: One; all of these companies have executives that have their eyes on the media department, which is more often than not, the ‘sweetheart’ of their communications or marketing departments. Two; all of these companies have IT departments, with IT experts on staff.
In the past, creative teams have kept IT out of their business. It’s a right brain left brain thing and most creatives put IT into the category of “Left Brain” which often translates to, “they just don’t understand”. As a former creative, I too shared this sentiment. But times they are a-changing. The ever-evolving capabilities and advantages of leading-edge technology drives executives to reorganizing placing IT in charge of the infrastructure of their creative teams. Ironically, IT has always had synergy with the creative process, although this conclusion has taken some time to ferment.
IT is the only group positioned to keep up with the speed of invention. They are the ones who first understand the greater efficiencies and capabilities of some advanced technologies. In creative terms, IT has ‘improved the workflow.’ And let’s face it, isn’t that what we all need, Workflow efficiency? Yes it is!
As soon as the creative professional realize their workflow efficiency has been boosted exponentially, they have the “Ah-Ha moment” that I’ve seen again and again. When IT first replaces a server or other familiar infrastructure and brings in the latest technological tools, creative teams are burdened and tense at the prospect of production disruption. But very quickly, they see the light and embrace the new possibilities. This ultimately leads to larger budgets ahead for their departments. IT has handed creatives the tools to perfect their art forms, thus creating better products.
IT the new cool? Time shall tell but as crazy as that seems, I’m thinking yes.