Innovation can be best achieved by collaborating with customers and partners to solve problems and pioneer new approaches. It is time for the broadcasting industry to work more closely together to create and promote an innovative mindset across our sector.
I recently attended the International Broadcasting Convention (IBC 2017) in Amsterdam, where together with my team we exchanged ideas and insights with industry leaders on how to embrace change in the broadcast media industry. The pace of change and innovation has clearly accelerated even since last year’s IBC, making the sector a very exciting space to be – if you are willing to embrace change.
We are witnessing broadcasters transition from traditional hardware-based environments to digital and software-centric workflows, spanning across creation of content through to delivery. However this transition does not need to be a binary choice – technology will support a hybrid model, allowing broadcasters to transition to IP and cloud at a pace that suits them. In time, broadcasters will be able to peel back the traditional SDI layer and reveal all the exciting prospects of an all IP world. For now, it’s about having an easily upgradable pathway to IP without the need for replacing the whole transport platform.
Rob Ambrose from High Green Consulting echoed this view while attending a Telstra Broadcast Services customer briefing. For High Green Consulting, the key to future growth is to be more flexible and efficient across the digital supply chain. Rob shared his top three tips for encouraging an innovation mindset in broadcasting – focus on flexibility and scalability not just cost, plan for hybrid models for diversity and resiliency, and see technical and business challenges as opportunities to be solved for competitive advantage.
Ed Silvester, Head of Video R&D at Perform Group took a different approach and stressed the importance of creating a culture of innovation and change internally. The fact that a lot of people in the industry prefer to stay with the status quo makes it important to create internal excitement around innovation. At Perform, there is a focus on getting people on board at an early stage, and communicating the enthusiasm of “being first” in order to bring people along on the journey of change and innovation. Team members’ involvement is key so they have asked many different parts of the business to contribute to feedback loops and have also focused on training and reskilling the workforce along with the technical and business model changes.
Whichever way we look at innovation within the broadcast industry, it is clear that a mindset change and flexibility is required. With the future of 5G deployment set to open the doors for new business models within the broadcast industry, it’s important that change is considered an opportunity, not a threat.