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A couple of months ago IBF produced a member briefing paper on the rise of internal video as a communication tool.There’s a whole raft of different technologies being used to deliver video – from live webcasts, to video on demand libraries to plasma screens in the canteen. The content also ranges broadly – from a strongly top-down CEO broadcast to video in Microsoft (see Channel9.msdn.com for a public equivalent of their internal site).

What seems to work best are very short, uncluttered messages. This is good news for network managers concerned about bandwidth and storage of huge, high resolution files. The bad news for communicators is that video can still be a divisive medium as it’s still relatively common to have corporate PCs that lack sound cards and speakers.

What’s less clear is whether we’ve yet developed a sufficient understanding of how to get the best from this medium. A leader that is not a naturally charismatic speaker is even less likely to grab employee’s attention on video. Indeed the whole question of attention remains a delicate one. Video is more engaging, but this very fact means people soon get restless as they can’t do things in parallel or ‘skim’ through the content. Make it too polished and people become cynical and disengage (we’ve all seen the classic ‘Corporate Movie’ where an Ibiza dance classic is pumped out as the camera pans round the accounts team drinking tea). Too unpolished and people get distracted by the camera wobble or disjointed edits.

Just as competence in email communication has matured, competence in this area will grow too, but the technology has only recently become widely-adopted, so it will take time.

[DWG members can download the report from the extranet: Video in Demand]

About the author

Nancy Goebel - DWG's Managing Director for Member & Benchmarking ServicesNancy Goebel is DWG’s Managing Director for Member Services. In addition to heading up service delivery, she is responsible for member engagement, retention and growth. Nancy also sits on DWG’s Board of Directors.

Prior to joining the Digital Workplace Group, Nancy was a accomplished executive at JPMorgan Chase where she built and led a global team in desigining and implementing an award-winning intranet. She also led digital enablement and business re-engineering initiatives.

Outside work, Nancy is a wine maker, fundraiser, meditator, wife and mother of two.

Connect with Nancy on Twitter: @nancyatdwg or on Google +.

One Comment

  1. I think the other thing to note is that the barriers to entry for video material are increasingly being eroded and video will form a significant part of user generated content. It already does, but it’ll continue to grow as those who prefer to author content via a lens rather than a keyboard grow up. What it means is that the conversations are taking a new form and that’s the challenge for communicators. Not the production values of your in house content.
    By the way, I’d be interested to know what proportion PCs in large companies still don’t have multimedia capabilities.

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