When the Covid-19 pandemic struck in early 2020, millions of people globally lost their jobs, and hundreds of thousands of businesses went under.
Yet while swaths of the population were sleeping in, baking bread, and bingeing Netflix shows, others found themselves unexpectedly busier than ever. Companies providing remote collaboration tools were thrust into the spotlight, with business exploding in a way they could have never foreseen. With a rare opportunity to seize the moment — and a calling to carry the workforce through this trying time — SaaS businesses offering work-from-home solutions stepped up to the plate.
Like many other industries, the entertainment business was left in limbo: production was swiftly shut down and studios closed with hardly a moment’s notice. With project deadlines creeping closer and a lot of money on the line, they needed solutions — stat.
Zoom, Google Meet, and Microsoft Teams scooped up the masses, with professionals in nearly all industries relying on their services. But similar SaaS businesses catering specially to the entertainment industry also continue to experience massive growth. Evercast, Sohonet, and Cinesync, among others, offer the ability to collaborate remotely for the purpose of media creation. Evercast, specifically, allows creatives to stream content in high-fidelity and full spectrum audio while simultaneously video conferencing with their team on the same platform — all with extremely low latency.
The entertainment industry faced a unique challenge: not only were their workflows turned upside down, but additionally, the demand for content was — and remains — higher than ever. They simply had to figure it out.
Creatives who were once reticent to incorporate remote collaboration into their workflow began to do so out of necessity — and, in the process, have realized its immense value: how it can maximize resources and take productivity to the next level, far beyond the constraints of a pandemic. It is no question that working remotely is the future of media and entertainment because it enables enhanced efficiency, productivity, and quality of life for creatives.
Remote employees save company time, energy, and resources
From a business perspective, having remote workers is a no-brainer — or at least, it should be. Quite simply, having fewer people present at the office translates to a reduction (and maybe eventual elimination) of rent and maintenance costs. And in instances where editors, producers, and other creatives would ordinarily travel to be on location, production stakeholders can instead forgo the cost of travel, lodging, and per diems with everybody working from home.
No doubt, those employees and freelancers who embrace “work-from-anywhere” and are comfortable with remote collaboration platforms like Evercast make for a more attractive workforce. Remote jobs offer the perks of more flexibility and cost savings, while reducing the carbon footprint in the process.
Create together remotely, in real time
More remote work = more content
With the onset of the pandemic came increased consumption of content. Today, people are spending more time at home than ever — and they’re particularly apt to seek an emotional escape from the bleak realities of 2020. Enter TV, movies, and OTT services. It’s great news for the entertainment industry — if it can keep up with teams working full-time from home.
The challenge is the transition from cubicle to home office, so to speak. “Old Hollywood” producers and studios that are set in their ways make the learning curve steep and the resistance high. But it’s no question that remote working allows media creators to produce more content because it enables creatives to collaborate in the moment and exchange feedback without having to schedule ahead and account for travel time.
In Los Angeles, the hub of the entertainment industry, commute times are no joke. In fact, in 2019, Angelenos spent an average of 167 hours stuck in traffic. Not to mention, there’s the constant of air travel for most producers, studio executives, editors, and more. It’s not simply about the time wasted in the car or on a plane; it’s also about the exhaustion that sets in upon arrival. How much more productive would we be if we never experienced the drain of traveling hours on each end of the workday or workweek?
Another plus for nailing down a remote creative workflow is that it facilitates connection among creatives around the world. Rather than limiting creative team members to individuals who are available locally, productions can have access to the best talent and freelancers from the entire world, without the constraints of time and travel.
Less commuting and globetrotting means more energy going into the creative work itself, which in turn, means more content produced.
Work-life balance fosters creativity
The process of making art is a bit of an enigma, but if there’s one thing that most creatives can agree on, it’s that spending hours on end in an office environment is not the greatest spark plug of inspiration. Having a personal life is key: time to spend with loved ones, to take a break, to experience new things and new places, to live on your own terms… that’s where the muses come to life.
Creativity is driven by collaboration and spontaneity, which is why a remote workflow makes sense in arts-driven industries. By collaborating virtually, creative teams can “hop on” to an online session when the moment sparks without wasting time and draining creative energy by having to schedule meetings and travel time. Sharing feedback in real time via video conference makes the collaboration more fluid, efficient, and productive. Under the right conditions with the right features, SaaS solutions offering the ability to video conference and stream content can reproduce the effectiveness of being in the same physical space — with all the time management benefits, comfort, and convenience of working from anywhere.
The Covid-19 pandemic kickstarted a wave of remote working that validated what many SaaS companies predicted all along: that working remotely greatly benefits employees and businesses alike. The television and film industry in particular, has long had the same workflow when it comes to production, so massive change was simply not on the horizon. Studio security approval is hard to come by for new software platforms, and those who are at Hollywood’s top of the ladder have often been in their same positions for decades. But after several months enjoying a flexible schedule and perfecting their home office spaces, many professionals just aren’t looking back.
Heidi Scharfe, Evercast user and editor of Linda Ronstadt: The Sound of My Voice said, “Frankly, we’re going to be working remotely for quite a while. And a lot of people say they don’t want to go back. Everyone lives an hour away, so that’s two hours you’re never going to get back and you’re never going to get paid for. That’s a lot of life to get back.”
Evercast exemplifies how SaaS can positively influence quality of life, efficiency, cost savings, and the environment. In media and entertainment, the pandemic marked a forced shift in the way we work, but in turn made us realize how much better it could be.