By the definition of business agility, we can ascertain that if anything, a successful business must constantly evolve and innovate, to keep a competitive edge. To maintain this pace of progress, many television companies face the dilemma of choosing the most flexible and long-lasting tools for managing their daily operations. Such choices can have a huge impact on their ability to not only organize and air their content, but to also generate good revenue to remain competitive.
This is where Broadcast Management Software (BMS) solutions come in, as they help to acquire and organize content libraries, schedule broadcasting and book advertisements into the broadcasted content. This very large and complex workflow often includes hundreds of employees, managing their respective tasks, with the aim to put together a complete playlist to broadcast to consumers. This puts a tremendous emphasis on precision and due diligence, as mistakes made here are potentially very costly, or alternatively result in suboptimal revenue generation.
As such, it is also the perfect environment for benefiting from automated workflow and constraint-based management systems, to prevent mistakes and optimize booking efficiency. This is the part of business agility that is crucial to success, as any mistake made sets you back, while your competitors storm forward. It also proves that to successfully evolve as a business, your choice of a management toolset is a crucial step. This is where integrated BMS solutions really shine, as they can be helpful to businesses, when utilized correctly. At the very least, they enhance and streamline the workflow of the TV station, and at their best, they automate large parts of it.
To verify such claims, one can look to the IABM “Media Tech Intelligence - Media Tech Trends” article (https://theiabm.org/manage-support-content-chain-trends/), which shows that NET investment outlook measured the Manage category as increasing by 13% from 2020 to 2021. Within this area, the Workflow orchestration category is the fastest growing area of investment for 2022 (at the time of writing this article, 22.08.2022) and Software development/ Consulting/ System Integration being second only to Cloud Computing.
MISTV® Mira is one such software solution for station management, concerned with workflow orchestration (among other things, but we shall stick to the topic at hand). We offer our clients a complete solution for Broadcast, Content and Advertising Sales management, aimed at client-specific needs regarding optimizing workflow. Through over three decades of experience, we have developed solutions that are fully customizable for numerous different markets and their specifics. This allowed us to release MISTV® Mira, a scalable and highly adjustable piece of software, that can accommodate small and large TV stations alike. Utilizing a module-oriented approach, we offer the users a clean and intuitive UX, requiring only simple training sessions to become familiar and efficient with the software. Thanks to the streamlined workflow and autobooking tool, you will be able to reduce costs on operations. The software is delivered as a SaaS license and as such is updated frequently and can be either centrally hosted or installed locally.
To optimize the workflow of an entire television enterprise is no small task. In different countries and their broadcasting markets, there is a great deal of divergence in order of operations and their dependence on other tasks that need to be carried out beforehand. This is why we offer a highly configurable solution, to make it possible to adjust to said differences and take into account any special requirements that may arise.
The traditional steps of the whole process are as follows: Content ingest > database record > metadata control > Long-term planning > On-Air promotion > Daily plan > Advertisement booking > Postlog reconciliation.
This is a very simplified and optimistically linear version of a workflow that is usually managed by multiple facets of the company, usually running these operations independently towards the unified final outcome of obtaining content, broadcasting it and keeping records of all the properties associated with it. However, this has a major flaw in that the respective departments often need to wait for the completion of other departments’ previous tasks. This also often redundantly multiplies workload and data entered.
To optimize this branched-out workflow, we offer an all-in-one solution that helps you organize the content to be broadcasted, add all the metadata you require, and provide an overview of the daily plan (down to single frame precision) to be released. This also includes any services and integrations to upstream and downstream processes that come with airing the planned content. One of the major advantages of this solution is that it allows for the creation of an overarching structure, which means that all individual departments can contribute simultaneously, without the need to wait on one another, while maintaining the integrity of a preset plan.
Once implemented at a TV station, the users undergo training (besides introductory lectures before implementation) in operating MISTV® Mira in their respective fields of responsibility. Because the software can be adjusted via user profiles, there is no need to worry about an overly-complicated interface, as the user can see only the part of workflow they are responsible for, unless they require more (such as administrators). This simplifies the process and helps avoid any potential mishaps. The system guides users through the whole process, highlighting what is mandatory, by aggregating many of the atomic steps into less (and more automated) procedures, reducing the required effort for completing respective tasks, maintaining a high standard of accuracy by keeping the essentials in focus, while taking care of mundane tasks in the background. This also includes vital checks, such as warnings to soon expiring licenses with remaining runs that are in danger of expiring, preventing loss of returns.
We put high emphasis on automatization of step-by-step processes for ease of use, increasing efficiency of procedures, reducing data input necessity, guided data entry for users (via templates and wizard-like processes), easy to use import and export functions supporting various commonly used formats (resulting in reduced workload and knowledge requirements per user), modular report creation from grids and constrain based operations that reduce not only risk of human error in input, but also the need for intervention from out consultants. We also make sure to include the latest technologies in forms of .NET Framework, Oracle Plug-in databases, components and APIs. These factors combined, result in a system that is flexible for any market needs, fast (assuming all hardware specifications are up to par), easy to learn and intuitive, less demanding in terms of manpower, secure, low maintenance and comprehensive in terms of tying the entire workflow of multiple departments.
In summary, we are providing the market with a solution that boosts enterprises’ content and management capabilities, while cutting costs on manpower in terms of time and money. These are achieved on multiple levels of TV station structure, by providing: a linearly unrestricted workflow for independent departments, automating simple tasks, constraint-based processes, avoidance of human error, reminders of license expirations, user tailored workspaces, streamlined workflow and 24/7 tech support with dedicated ticketing system.