TELUS International, the global arm of TELUS, one of Canada's top national telecommunications companies, is a contact center and information technology outsourcing business with about 17,000 employees in multiple countries. With service centers located around the world, and many preconceived perceptions, outsourcing can be a tough business to promote. TELUS International's senior marketing and communications manager Jeff Gangemi explains, "As an industry, contact center outsourcing is somewhat commoditized. There are hundreds of players, and most look at it as a cost-saving service—which is not at all how we approach the business. If you ask people to tell you what they think a contact center in Central America or the Philippines looks like, they tend to have a certain mental picture in mind, which is not always positive."
What people see at TELUS International, which values employee engagement and loyalty above all else, is not what they typically expect. Visitors will find gorgeously designed, vibrant working environments equipped to the hilt with high-end amenities and bustling with enthusiastic, happy employees. "Our approach is to build strong communities in the areas we do business, and to create great environments for our employees, which leads to a much higher service level," Gangemi notes. "When we get people to visit and actually see the quality of our operations, they're many times more likely to work with us."
Virtual Site Tour: TELUS International Europe
As the head of TELUS International's global video marketing team, Gangemi's task was to re-create that successful experience of "being there" with a video series of virtual site tours of TELUS International's awesome facilities around the world. (See them here.)
Challenges: Centralizing Production Across Three Continents and One Far-Flung Editor
The first video tours in the series focused on operational centers in Central America, Europe and the Philippines. Gangemi needed to produce them with a small, virtual, consultant-based team. For cost and convenience, he preferred to use local crews to shoot instead of flying a crew to each location around the globe. For brand continuity and quality consistency, he preferred to work with a single editor, a virtual team member based in Bucharest, Romania. Gangemi himself is based in Vermont, with other marketing colleagues on the project based in TI's global operational centers.
"In the past, we had hired local teams to shoot, edit and deliver the final product end to end, but there was a real variance in the quality of shooting and brand presentation from region to region. We wanted this series to have the same look and feel throughout," Gangemi notes. He also wanted to eliminate delays and the risks inherent in having each crew copy media to drives and ship them internationally to the editor. Simplifying the review process was also critical.
Virtual Site Tour: TELUS International Central America
"We knew we needed to be able to centralize everything and work in the cloud—not just for this project, but as a way to globalize our workflow overall," Gangemi says. TELUS International's learning and development team, another virtual team within the company that regularly creates video materials, suggested that together they investigate Aframe. "It turned out to be exactly what we needed."
Virtual Team Creates Virtual Tours
Aframe's cloud-based video collaboration platform enables TELUS International's marketing department and learning and development teams to upload, store, share and collaborate on large-scale video projects, with browser-based access by team members around the world.
For the virtual site tour series, Gangemi was the overall project manager and set up the Aframe project administratively. As each local crew completed its shoot (logging approximately four to five hours of footage per location for each four- to five-minute piece), a marketing team member uploaded the footage to Aframe, where Gangemi and Bucharest-based editor Stefan Leu could review it and make selects. Leu was able to create rough cuts immediately, without waiting for drives to ship and clear customs, and/or media copying.
Virtual Site Tour: TELUS International the Philippines
Gangemi explains, "Stefan and I worked closely together during the edit process and used Collections in Aframe to keep everything organized. Having all footage in one central location is a huge improvement over how we used to work. It's immediate, and everyone can get to what they need to keep the project moving."
For review, executives and team members across TELUS International in all regions were able to access cuts from a PC, Mac or mobile device and provide context-specific feedback. Gangemi notes, "All of the initial reviewers gave direction by entering timecoded comments in Aframe. Stefan could just go through them and do everything at once. That's a big deal. It simplifies the workflow so he doesn't have to pull up e-mail or spreadsheets to look at everyone's comments. They're all in one place. And it's much easier for international stakeholders to interact with the project and the process overall."
The virtual tour video series, TELUS International's first significant Aframe project, is an anchor of a relaunch of the company's web presence. In addition to posting the series on the site, Gangemi is also delivering the videos through a targeted campaign to key prospects that has so far delivered a 25 percent success rate. "Our strategy is to create high-quality pieces and maximize the use of them," he explains. Aframe also helps on that front, enabling Gangemi's team and their colleagues in learning and development to make better use of finished pieces and the wealth of footage they shoot, and share it across teams.
"When we work on any new video projects, we can now easily grab footage from past shoots and work it in. I just create a few Collections for the editor, and they can access them and make decisions remotely. It gives them much more creative control. Before Aframe, I would have to make all the decisions about shot selection, select all of the clips, upload them to an FTP server, have the editor download them and live with my choices. Aframe makes repurposing easier and more effective."
Gangemi explains that, to his corporate marketing team, the key value of Aframe is the improvement in their workflow and the fact that it has enabled them to work globally much more effectively. "Aframe centralizes everything, and because it's designed specifically for video, it gives us a more efficient process overall, with the ability to create Collections and keep comments tied to timecode. Storage is reliable and accessible. Working in the cloud means that we can work with any editor or crew, anywhere in the world, and they can all interact with projects throughout the process. Overall, having footage centrally accessible immediately, to everyone who needs to be involved, has totally transformed the way we work."
Corporate Marketing/Video Production
Centralize video production processes to enable globally dispersed virtual teams
- Produce a series of virtual tours of offices on three different continents
- Use local film crews for convenience and cost savings
- Have a single editor create all three pieces for consistent quality, look and feel, and branding
TELUS International used Aframe's cloud-based Video Collaboration and Review & Approval software to centralize locally captured production assets. This allowed footage to be immediately and securely accessible via browser to their remotely located editor, making rough cuts available via browser to international reviewers who could add comments tied to timecode, with all feedback logged and visible centrally. With Aframe, the marketing and learning and development teams were able to easily repurpose finished pieces and footage.
- Overall efficiency: Footage shot locally is uploaded and available immediately. Edits start (and finish) faster. Team members can collaborate more effectively via Collections and timecoded notes.
- Streamlined review: Reviewers can access cuts via browser and quickly add notes contextually, and all feedback is centralized for the editor.
- Consistent quality and brand impression: Enabling a single editor to cut all pieces with a cloud-based workflow keeps them brand consistent, boosting the quality of the series overall.
- Easier repurposing: Finished videos and raw footage are easily accessible (and indexed) for sharing and extended use within and across teams and projects.