11.02.2009 01:49 PM
Originally featured on BroadcastEngineering.com
ScheduALL Resource Management helps Virgin Media Television streamline production

Virgin Media Television, a provider of TV programming and broadband content, has upgraded to ScheduALL Enterprise Resource Management (ERM) software at its Creative Village post-production facility to manage promo creation and compliance versioning for programming delivered to digital television platforms including Virgin Media, Sky Digital and Freeview.

As Virgin Media TV delivers content for six of its broadcast channels, LIVING, LIVING2, Bravo, Bravo2, Virgin1, and Challenge, ScheduALL’s business tools enable the facility to measure and monitor the use and productivity of its various resources and relate this data to project and budget targets. With its upgrade to the latest version of ScheduALL, Virgin Media TV has merged scheduling of IT resources into the ERM system, further increasing operational efficiencies.

Dan Marbrook, post-production manager at Virgin Media TV, said his promo department is operated like a bookable facility with resources broken down by cost. ScheduALL’s ErM package allows them to manage and track the use of those resources so that we maintain a high level of productivity and meet our contract requirements.

Virgin Media TV contracts with Red Bee Media to provide broadcast, post-production and transmission services. In addition to simplifying booking of production resources, including edit suites and associated equipment and staff, ScheduALL attaches real-time cost data that provides a snapshot of edit costs and how they compare to the companies' contracts, delivering an accurate comparison of actual vs. plan and ROI. ScheduALL also manages the live recordings of content, typically live feeds from the United States and live outside broadcasts from the UK, delivered via Red Bee.

Within ScheduALL software, Virgin Media TV uses a series of rate cards to measure how efficiently each department and producer creates each individual product. If, for instance, a producer is keeping costs down by completing more work on desktop editors than on high-end craft edit systems, the ScheduALL system reflects this efficiency. Further, by associating bookings to projects, it enables the grouping of work orders so that managers can see what any single project costs. On the project level, the software thus allows management to see how well producers perform over any given month and if, for example, they're meeting targets for creating promo packages.

The analysis tools plus real-time data also gives Virgin Media TV the information needed to make a business case for more or fewer resources, or to boost performance in specific areas of operations. As an added benefit, the interface is conveniently displayed on a video screen at the facility's entrance and provides a current run-down of the day's bookings for post-production staff.

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