Change Begins Within

Nalpeiron Software Analytics Blog, November 2013 http://blog.nalpeiro ... urial-way/

Change begins within: Working inside the system the intrapreneurial way


All we hear living in the Bay Area is Start Up, Start Up, Start Up.  Well, what if you’re not a budding CEO, have no plans to become Master of the Universe, and in fact, would like to go to work every day and just do a damn fine job? You too, the humble employee, can benefit from the power of software analytics, such as monitoring software usage, churn, user adoption issues, and measuring costs of acquisition. 


Working inside a major corporation, it may seem impossible to imagine disruption within the workings of a juggernaut of a system.  But that’s exactly what an intrapreneur does.  Intrapreneurs are those employees that excel at creating change from within an already existing structure and navigating the apparent blocks that stand in the way.  One of the most powerful tools in the intrapreneur’s arsenal is good data.  And one of the strongest pieces of data for any company, no matter how large, is cost.  And if you can figure out how to cut costs at the same time as improving production, you are probably an intrapreneur in the making.


This is exactly how the creative team at CiscoTV managed massive internal change.  Working out of one un-air-conditioned room with an additional edit suite in an adjacent broom cupboard, creative film and video production from training videos, to promotional pieces, to conference coverage - the majority of its creative content - had been outsourced for many, many years. By monitoring costs over an extended period of time, the tiny team of one was able to persuade management to try bringing their creative in house and thus was born, Script to Screen, CiscoTV.


Only two years later the global network of producers, writers and editors that make up Script to Screen creates about 500 projects a year.  The team saves the corporation large and easily quantifiable amounts of cash that can be gauged by costing out how much outsourcing would require in comparison to in-house production.  And still some work, especially when it is truly too specialized such as extremely high-level graphics, specialty camera work such as helicopter shots, is produced outside. 


What is less easily quantifiable is the increased value in better streamlined branding, message alignment, risk reduction, and more easily incorporating employees into the production process as clients, collaborators, and even on-air talent.


Script to Screen now operates the equivalent of a major TV station in its Silicon Valley HQ with satellite offices in the UK, India, Singapore, Tokyo and other sites around the world.  The original broom closet edit suite is still there but it is one of many, and the un-air-conditioned room now houses mechanical equipment that doesn’t mind the temperature. 


Much can be achieved by a few dedicated individuals committed to data-driven management, an executive sponsor with a shared vision of the change those employees are trying to make, and clear, useful data that drives action and change.


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