here. It’s pushing information out to our users.”
It’s not rocket science, notes Whit Andrews, a Gartner analyst.
“Video has been used for training since the Second World War. But
You Tube’s ease of use, compatibility and cross-platform relevance
all make companies excited” about video, he says.
But the content-management challenges associated with video
are far from simple. As enterprises move deeper into the world of
on-demand video, the issues of storing, distributing and searching
content will inevitably grow. A slew of vendors offer video content
management tools, but managing video storage, networking, access
control and security are relatively new tasks for IT departments.
Management of streaming video is often siloed, with each business unit handling the video it uses. But mature organizations are
assigning management of all video to the IT department to tap the
expertise of network engineers, says Forrester analyst Phil Karcher.
Concern about whether the network infrastructure can handle
video traffic has tempered the enthusiasm of many executives.
“Folks are still using webcasting internally for company
meetings and top-down CEO communications, and externally
for marketing purposes and webinars. But as far as [supporting]
on-demand video, storing content and letting users create video,
that hasn’t happened yet” on a broad scale, Karcher says, because
of network and control issues. There are also security concerns
about proprietary video leaking out into public domains.
But a handful of organizations have taken the leap into video
content management and are managing the technical and security challenges on the fly, as they arise.
Playing It by Ear
The Manhattan School of Music (MSM), an international music
conservatory in New York, uses Polycom’s high-definition video-conferencing systems and open-source software to make recorded training sessions
available for students to review on demand.
“We have 1,000 hours’ worth of educational video, and we’re now taking all that
archival material and getting it onto our
server,” says Christianne Orto, associate
dean and director of recording and distance
learning. “The idea is to create a virtual
library for our student body so they can
continue training” through video.
The four biggest concerns that executives face when considering video content
management are storage space, bandwidth,
security and searchability.
The ever-decreasing cost of storage,
combined with increases in the compression rates of video files, makes video
storage more reasonable than it was several
years ago. “The cost of storage on the back
end is minuscule,” Thornton says.
MSM expects to add 400 hours of video
content to its searchable archives each year.
For now, it will add new servers as needed,
but “down the road, we’re thinking about a
cloud computing solution,” Orto says.
Video files are ravenous bandwidth-
eaters, but there are many ways to solve that problem. Andrews rec-
ommends a peer-assisted delivery model that allows a machine in
one remote office to serve as the broadcast vehicle for all machines
in that office, so they only pipe in video from one location.
Case for Video
Typical uses of video in corporate settings:
n Training: On-demand video can cost
less than classroom training, especially
for far-flung workers, who can draw from
a library of recorded videos at any time.
Black & Decker encourages its employees to
submit short videos of best practices.
n Sales support: Sales professionals
can watch (and rewatch) recorded video of
successful sales interactions.
n Corporate communications: Video
adds a human dimension to management
messages and helps to keep the distributed
n Product development: Video allows
globally distributed teams to view prototypes
and reconcile project plans.
n External communications: Companies
can distribute videos — such as Wall Street
briefings and product demonstrations —
to investors, partners and customers.
SOurCe: FOrreSter reSearCh repOrtS,
MarCh anD april 2011