How media CFOs can reduce investment risk

May 21, 2020 | 4 minute read
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By Olivier Jorda, Global Media & Entertainment Director, Oracle Industry Solutions Group 

Content has always been king in the media and entertainment (M&E) industry, but when it comes to today’s white-hot competitive landscape, it’s also a key differentiator. Unfortunately, aggregating content simply isn’t enough to win eyeballs and loyal subscribers. 

Established streaming services with deep pockets like Netflix and Prime Video have been competing with traditional broadcasters for several years. Now they’re going head to head with large studios like Disney and CBS Viacom (both of which have vast libraries) to enthrall streaming subscribers with captivating original content. In 2019, the industry invested an estimated $160 billion in TV and video programing worldwide, a figure expected to grow to $180 billion by 2022. Netflix alone is estimated to have spent $15 billion last year to buy, produce, and license content, a 25% jump over the company’s 2018’s $12 billion spend. 

As the battle rages, the key to capturing the market is getting quality content to consumers as quickly, efficiently, and cost-effectively as possible. But as the M&E industry consolidates and takes ever-greater risks with original programming, it must also bridge the disconnect between production teams and the finance decision-makers holding the purse-strings. 

With gig workers now making up a high percentage of all studio employees and an increasing reliance on external partners and suppliers, how can companies make the production ecosystems work efficiently? And how can they successfully pivot from producing locally to distributing globally?

To overcome these issues, an effective production management solution must provide transparency of, and support for, the entire production journey. It must offer real-time data about budgets and projections so that creators, producers and financial backers can make the right investment decisions. 

Connect creatives with decision-makers

One of the biggest hurdles to efficiency in M&E organizations is the disconnect between creative teams and corporate back offices. Content producers need effective production budgeting, planning, and resource management, while business leaders are looking to reduce risk and maximize profitability.

The new Oracle Smart Media Production Planning (SMPP) cloud ERP solution is designed to help you meet those goals. It uses advanced technologies, including artificial intelligence (AI) and blockchain, to help content creators find new efficiencies, revenue opportunities, and competitive advantages.

Oracle SMPP lets your organization track the performance of media franchises with true production costs and revenue KPIs, in real time, across the entire lifecycle. It also reduces risk by learning from past performance to make future content investments more effective. Imagine handling delays, production changes and on-set emergencies with instant budget updates and rapid approvals from head office. That’s all doable with SMPP.

The solution includes Oracle Cloud ERP and EPM augmented by blockchain, AI, and mobile, delivering planning and resource management to production teams and corporate offices alike. Finance teams can model complex budget scenarios to forecast risk, costs, and revenues, and identify the best way to maximize a franchise’s ultimate profitability. Best practices are embedded into production accounting and planning, making everyone more efficient and productive. As the production team makes decisions and adapts to changing circumstances, the data is instantly available within Oracle Cloud ERP

Maximize crew resources with blockchain and AI

With the best contractors in high demand, finding the right media crew can be a daunting process. Who’s available? Who has the right skills? Can you trust that their credentials are accurate? 

SMPP allows your team to create a marketplace of trusted production suppliers using a blockchain-based network of immutable supplier records. This lets you track the best contractors (and avoid those who are less desirable) with up-to-date feedback ratings and validated competences, not only from your own experience but also from trusted peers and external parties. AI-assisted production planning helps you rein in complexity when hiring vendors and adapt quickly to contingencies so you can minimize costly downtime. Have a camera operator call in sick? SMPP can leverage AI to find an available replacement with the right skills so your production doesn’t experience delays.

Become the studio of choice 

How productive is your crew? How satisfied are your contractors with the current administrative process? Knowing who the best contractors are is one thing, but giving them the best work experience is entirely another. SMPP enhances crew member experience with a configurable mobile app. The app provides access to relevant information and administrative processes, putting teams in instant communication with one another. What’s more, messaging and transactions are recorded on the blockchain to build trust, and automation speed up processes like timesheet submission, invoicing, and payment. Onboarding runs more smoothly, schedules are instantly updated, and your team can focus on being creators instead of admins. It’s never been easier to be a contractor!

Build the integrated media company of the future today

With Oracle SMPP, you can modernize your productions’ finance operations. It’s an integrated solution that connects production management with corporate accounting. Your team can use real-time, data-driven insights to minimize investment risk and improve planning and decision-making.

Learn more about how Oracle Smart Media Production Planning can transform your content creation process.

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