The “work from home” days are going to continue beyond this period of international crisis as, according to a Zixi poll, 81% of media executives believe they require permanent remote capabilities.
The COVID-19 pandemic lead to a drastic shift towards a remote workforce, as entire companies had to rethink their workflows and daily routines and explore new options to keep teams working. For media and entertainment, one of the industries hardest hit by the pandemic, the effort to support remote infrastructures is especially considerable, and ProVideo Coalition has shared a variety of solutions made available by different companies, from Blackbird to OpenDrives, EditShare and others.
What was a temporary solution to keep post-production projects in-motion and teams employed, during this “new normal”, is now seen, more and more, as something for the future. In fact, Zixi, the industry leader for enabling dependable, live broadcast-quality video over any IP, recently conducted a webinar on “Pivoting to Remote Monitoring and Broadcast Operations”, and a poll of 80 leading global media company executives showed that the majority do not believe we are experiencing a one-time event and rather now believe that moving forward, they will need a permanent capability to enable broadcast quality live streaming operations from remote locations such as the home.
Every professional is now a home-broadcaster
We’ve seen it live everyday on our TV sets, as many news coverage and interviews are held virtually. Professionals have transformed their living room or kitchen in a make-shift studio, and in a world moving towards 8K we see low-resolution broadcasts take the stage. The shift in broadcast has been tremendous, with remote controlled cameras used in studios for some broadcasts, while smartphones are used by a new legion of “home quarantined” broadcasters. It even led to CNN’s Richard Quest feature Work From Home – A New Reality.
The Washington Post article “On camera at home, TV personalities provide a peek at their book collections, wallpaper and cats” gives an idea of the new landscape that may stay with us beyond this period. WFH – Working From Home – is a now a popular term added to the vocabulary of many people and one that represents a shift in society, maybe as important and beneficial as Dr. Anthony Fauci’s suggestion that we should stop shaking hands, permanently.
Things may be changing in production too. Scottish actor Brian Cox revealed, during a recent – virtual – interview for the BBC program HARDtalk, with Stephen Sackur, that he is involved in a virtual film, shot by three female film directors in the UK, with an actor from Los Angeles, another from Denmark and himself. Cox says that they’re “doing this rather sweet funny film” without sharing more details about production. This type of solution may well be explored further in the future.
The benefits of remote workflows
The poll released by Zixi on the media industry readiness in the face of the current COVID-19 pandemic revealed that the industry has been hard hit with the ongoing pandemic, especially with so much of its operations based in the NYC area. With many inflexible hardware-based video infrastructures, keeping employees safe and at home while the show still goes on has been very difficult. While its true more and more companies are realizing the benefits of IP-based infrastructures, shifts towards software-based virtualized workflows and IP transmission have not happened fast enough for some, says Zixi.
The shift to the “work from home” concept is going to continue beyond this period, and many media executives believe they require permanent remote capabilities. The poll showed that 53% believe the current statewide shutdowns will last for another 2-months, with only 16% believing this current shutdown will last for more than 6-months, while also indicating that 66% believe that this is not a single one-time event. Of those responding, 81% believe that their organizations require a permanent remote workforce capability for future breakouts from the current health crisis, or for potential future like incidents or disasters.
Zixi Powered!, a virtual showcase
As part of the company’s initiative to help customers navigate through these unprecedented times when remote work is essential, Zixi recently offered new and existing Zixi customers the complimentary use of its cloud-based Video Control Plane, ZEN Master, for 3-months in an effort to facilitate the provisioning, orchestration monitoring and management of live video streams by operations staff safely working remotely.
“While an abundance of Zixi’s customers have virtualized their workflows and have been able to reduce onsite employees as much as 80%, many media organizations have not and are now scrambling.” said Gordon Brooks, Executive Chairman and CEO, Zixi. “The number of companies that have broken the glass on what were long range plans is keeping us very busy and we hope making a difference.”
In the wake of the cancellation of the NAB Show 2020, the company will also be conducting a two week virtual showcase, as ProVideo Coalition mentioned earlier. This series of video meetings and webinars will present Zixi’ s latest innovations and announcements including industry discussions featuring partners and customers, demonstrations of partner integrations, and new enhancements to the award-winning Software-Defined Video Platform (SDVP) that powers broadcast quality live video delivery over IP.
Beginning on Monday April 20th and running through Friday May 1st, this series of video meetings and webinars will present Zixi’s latest innovations and announcements. Follow the link for more information about Zixi Powered!