Case Study

Kavi and the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers

SMPTE manages collaborative work of thousands of members with Kavi Workspace

“Kavi Workspace bridged gaps in our processes by providing a centralized, online application that accurately addressed our stated requirements from the outset. All our standards activities now take place in a unified work area, and it’s easy for different groups to be in constant communication.”

— Peter Symes, Director of Engineering and Standards, SMPTE

Defining the Next Generation of Standards for TV and Cinema

SMPTE is a powerhouse organization within the motion-imaging industry. With more than 5,000 national and international members, SMPTE strives to develop standards and promote technology in the television, cinematic, and audio-visual fields. Throughout its almost 100-year history, the organization has sought solutions and processes to harness the efforts of its diverse group of members (filmmakers, technicians, engineers, and more) working in parallel on a variety of projects and technologies.

“As web-based solutions became more pevalent we made attempts to manage projects using online tools for corresponding and collaborating,” said Peter Symes, Director of Engineering and Standards for SMPTE. “Our challenge was that none of these tools communicated with each other, and the result was a cumbersome, manual process with too much room for human error. Administrators were left to connect the dots, and it became clear that a more process-driven solution was key to the success of our organization.”

A Unified Solution to Address Complex Requirements

SMPTE approached Kavi with their challenge. “We needed a comprehensive web-based application to better support our needs for extensive committee collaboration, projects, and events,” continued Symes. “Kavi Workspace bridged gaps in our processes by providing a centralized, online application that accurately addressed our stated requirements from the outset. All our standards activities now take place in a unified work area, and it’s easy for different groups to be in constant communication.” With documents, comments, emails, calendars, and ballots communicating within and across committees, SMPTE was able to more effectively manage member and group activity.

“The advantages of being able to upload, edit, and share documents online allows our members to prepare for meetings in advance. With the Kavi solution in place, the majority of our work is accomplished online, making meetings more productive.”

— Peter Symes, Director of Engineering and Standards, SMPTE

Document Management and Commenting are Paramount

Document management was a key concern for SMPTE. “Before deploying the Kavi Workspace solution, our members would attend meetings with empty suitcases in hand, ready to bring home piles of paper to study and read after the fact,” said Symes. “Now we can upload, edit, and share documents online, allowing our members to prepare for meetings in advance. With the Kavi solution in place, the majority of our work is accomplished online, making meetings more productive.”

Additionally, commenting is a rigorous and essential part of the SMPTE document approval process. Administrators are now able to place strict guidelines on how comments can be submitted, and the organization has benefitted from the color-coded comment management interface to swiftly address and resolve comments. A process that had previously relied heavily on a time-consuming cutand- paste method has become streamlined and efficient. Kavi Workspace has provided SMPTE with group-based areas to carry out common committee tasks such as:

  • Uploading and downloading documents and revisions
  • Submitting and responding to comments
  • Exchanging emails via listservs
  • Publishing and tracking events
  • Managing committee projects
  • Enabling new member sign-ups and accounts
  • Creating and tallying ballots.

Permissions play a key role

Considering the specific and nested nature of SMPTE’s committee structure, it was imperative that only authorized members gain access to potentially sensitive material. The permissions functionality in Kavi Workspace ensures that only those with the correct privileges have access to protected group information.

With the permissions enabled, members cannot operate outside of the organization’s requirements. However, those members still have to understand how to use the Kavi Workspace solution. “We introduced the Kavi tools to organization members in stages, beginning with email lists and eventually moving to committee-specific pages, balloting, and commenting,” continued Symes. “As members got more comfortable the tools, our administrators gathered their input and feedback for improvements. This allows us to enhance our processes, all with the support and partnership of the Kavi team.”

Process Enhancements Continue

A strong relationship and communication between SMPTE and Kavi has resulted in a continuously improving experience for SMPTE members. SMPTE now uses Kavi Workspace to effectively manage the collaborative work of thousands of members and hundreds of committees. As SMPTE made the move to an integrated, online, collaborative solution, they worked alongside Kavi to ensure that the organization’s required processes and hierarchies were fully integrated into any new functionality.

“With Kavi Workspace, we now have an efficient, robust solution that is used by our members across time zones and operating systems, further securing our global position as the standards leader in the television, cinema and audio-visual industry,” said Symes. “I see this as an evolution, and look forward to growing our capabilities with new Kavi offerings.”

SMPTE

Organization Profile

The Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers (SMPTE) is the leading technical society for the motion imaging industry, with thousands of members throughout 64 countries worldwide.

Challenge

Deploy a comprehensive solution to better manage the organization’s standards projects and industry events.

Solution

Kavi Workspace provides a centralized online application that met all of SMPTE’s stated requirements from the outset.

Impact on Organization

SMPTE now has an efficient, robust solution used by members across time zones and operating systems, furthering their mission to remain the standards leader in their industry.

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