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Improving Team Agility with Creative Operations & Technology

  • 4 min read

The pressure is on for today’s creative departments to keep up with the never-ending demand for new, high-quality content. With one billion gigabytes of new content being created in the world every two days, it's no wonder that creative professionals are struggling to keep up with both the amount of work expected and within the timeframe, they’re expected to create it—both issues described as “top challenges” in the InMotionNow In-House Creative Management Report.

In most organizations, creatives are inundated with content requests from many departments including marketing, sales, customer success, etc., along with expectations on how quickly those requests can be filled. On top of this, they’re also facing major operational challenges, including:

  1. A lack of resources: Although more and more content is needed, budgets are not increasing with the demand, making a permanent boost in production unsustainable.
  2. Difficulty collaborating: When teams, partners, stakeholders and clients are geographically distributed and often working remotely, there is no effective way to structure, streamline and track creative workflows.
  3. Continual bottlenecks: Bottlenecks can only be overcome by making a business case for solutions that improve them—but creatives are too busy to justify, let alone implement, changes or investments in technology.

From the outside looking in, it appears that creative teams should be so far underwater, they’ll never make it back to the surface.

Why creative operations are important

The first step to alleviating any of these challenges is to consider how creative operations are at the heart of the matter, and how improving efficiencies for your creative department will cause a positive ripple effect throughout the entire organization. The mandate: to increase production capacity, deliver more approved assets on time and successfully impact your organization’s bottom line.

Water drop with ripplesHighly productive, soundly structured creative operations with established, proven workflows quickly become the backbone of a strong and agile team. They understand how to balance a team’s personal and creative needs with a structured workflow to make sure creative work continuously gets done on time, within budget and to standards. But how does one provide structure to a creative team? How do we properly support them?

Creative operations help teams become more efficient and productive by providing structure for the creative process. They work to formalize workflows and identify areas to streamline operations across the department. According to MediaValet partner iO Integration, there are four critical responsibilities to those that work in creative operations:

  1. Formally defining and optimizing processes for creative production.
  2. Identifying and evaluating gaps in flows.
  3. Optimizing the balance of people, processes and technology involved with creative work.
  4. Using metrics and KPIs to track and analyze operations.

Where technology fits in

Implementing technology is a fantastic place to start, as it will provide structure to your creative workflows. The key to success here is the technology you choose.

Not all technology stacks equate to improved productivity or agility. In fact, a disconnected, ad hoc stack often has an inverse effect on creative teams’ agility and resilience. When evaluating your technology stack, flexibility and availability should be the top two priorities.

Flexibility ensures that your creative team can pivot and adapt quickly. This is a must in an ever-changing work environment, where employees can get sick or go on vacation, priorities can shift or external factors can alter plans. Individual tasks and entire projects must be able to change hands quickly and seamlessly — no matter the circumstance.

Availability ensures that the technology solution is accessible by anyone, from anywhere, at any time. Upwork anticipates that 22% of workers in the United States will be remote by 2025. Whether your team is working from the office, their home, or another country, your technology stack needs to allow them to work just as effectively, with access to the same resources.

Is it time to modernize your creative operations?

Creative operations eBook mockupIt’s time for organizations to harness the power of giving creative operations the time and space they need to do their jobs well. To stay ahead of the curve, organizations need to find ways to increase bandwidth to make room for creativity, exploration and risk. Not only is this critical to prevent burnout, it’s also needed to pull out ideas that will allow teams to stand out.

If you’re ready to take your creative operations up a notch, download our eBook, Modernizing Your Creative Operations, where we discuss:

  • The challenge with current creative operations
  • How to address common challenges facing creative teams
  • How to enable digital dexterity with technology.

MediaValet is a leader in cloud-based digital asset management that helps organizations manage, organize and share their digital assets, improving productivity and increasing ROI. See MediaValet in action today.

MediaValet Team