Optimizing Your Video Workflow with Advanced Software

December 23,2023

If you have enough experience producing videos, you understand that concocting a masterpiece from a pile of raw footage can often be a slow and frustrating process. You can make this journey from concept to conclusion a little less arduous by learning the carefully orchestrated dance known as the video production workflow.

Having a streamlined video production workflow can both save you time and help you create higher-quality content. So, what is the video production workflow process?

What Is Video Production Workflow?

When producing a video, you generally have to fit an avalanche of moving parts into a precise schedule on a tight budget. To organize all those resources, the video production industry has evolved a stream of best practices to help get projects of all sizes from the drawing board to the display screen. Your video production workflow is like a map you can use to plan your video project from scripting to shooting to sharing.

What is the typical workflow cycle of video production?

The Typical Workflow Cycle of Video Production

Filmmakers tend to divide their production workflow into four typical stages. What are the four stages common to most video workflows?

1. Preproduction

Preproduction is where you start to translate your ideas from your mind to something tangible. It involves scripting, storyboarding, scouting locations or building sets, scheduling, casting and other planning tasks.

Scripting is where you print out the narrative art in your head onto paper or pixel. At this stage, the scripting tools in advanced video production workflow software can help you and your team quickly share documents, add contextual feedback and sort all the commentary. A digital storyboard can then help you break your narrative into manageable bites and let your collaborators add their ideas directly into specific scenes.

You’ll use your script and storyboard to design a shot list of all the takes you need to film on production day. Your shot list will help you write an elaborate production schedule to make sure everyone in your cast and crew knows where they need to be and when. Video management software can help you optimize this entire preproduction workflow by providing a centralized library of all your preproduction documents, graphics, personnel lists, example shots, location photos and other assets that your whole team can access from anywhere.

2. Production

The production stage is where you film the raw footage for your video. It also involves setting up at your location or set, getting your talent ready and placing your cameras, lights and sound equipment.

At this stage, you can use your video production software’s remote chat features to direct your team and its tracking technology to monitor and control your equipment. Camera tracking software can help you pick the right lenses, angles and movements to plan your shots precisely and repeatably.

3. Postproduction

Postproduction starts when you send your raw footage to your editing team and ends with a polished video product. It includes cutting and splicing clips into a coherent narrative, enhancing the colors, adding effects and music, mixing the audio and inserting titles and captions.

In this stage, you can use advanced editing software and a structured video asset management system to keep your editors efficient and prevent assets from getting lost. If your project runs long, you’ll need professional-grade editing software like Media Composer Enterprise that can handle the hours of footage you feed it in the format and resolution you provide. Your asset management system should enable your editors to share rough cuts with the right people and effortlessly collect detailed feedback.

4. Distribution

Once you’re happy with the final cut, you’ll need to optimize your video for the various platforms and channels of distribution you plan to use. That means transcoding it into a format that’s compatible with the resolutions, aspect ratios and algorithms of each platform without losing too much quality. If you use a video editing tool that can automatically render videos to the specifications of your desired platforms, you’ll be able to get it right quicker and avoid a lot of hassle.

The Importance of Editing Workflow in Optimizing Video Production

What is the importance of editing workflow in video production? During the editing stage, you’ll slowly sculpt your masterpiece out of the mountain of raw clips. The video will probably then evolve through multiple versions that need to be reviewed by many different stakeholders. Using an optimal editing workflow can help keep your raw footage organized, speed up your editing behavior, track versions and curate critiques.

Advanced Editing Software

Traditional video editing software can place a plethora of powerful tools at your fingertips, but these are often much too manual and can bog you down in endless, repetitive clicking and waiting. Today, the most advanced video production software comes with AI automation that speeds up your editing workflow by eliminating many time-consuming tasks and offering suggestions that can improve your content’s quality.

Many also facilitate real-time remote collaboration with seamless file sharing and feedback features. For example, Avid’s Media Composer now comes with over-the-shoulder collaboration tools that let editors securely upload sequences to a virtual “third monitor” that reviewers can stream and comment on from anywhere.

Streamlining Your Production Process

Here are a few benefits of using video management software to streamline your production process:

  • You’ll manage your team’s time better, increase productivity and set more realistic deadlines.
  • You’ll find it easier to stick to your budget and distribute resources.
  • Your team will collaborate better with clearer roles and responsibilities, fewer miscommunications and more precise feedback.
  • You’ll have more consistent branding across all your content.
  • You’ll be able to more quickly distribute the final product in multiple formats.

Efficiency and Collaboration

Your video production workflow software acts as the Robin to your Batman, assisting you with all the mundane details so you can focus on the most important creative elements. How can you streamline your production process? Here are a few examples of how software tools can facilitate collaboration in different workflow stages:

  • Cloud-based collaboration tools take your planning online for faster sharing of ideas and content, greater transparency and more communication.
  • Calendar and schedule syncing tools put everyone on the same page and help you visualize your progress.
  • Trackable tasks let you easily dole out responsibilities and analyze results.
  • Budgeting features integrate with your calendar to help you stick to your limits and avoid financial surprises.
  • Script and storyboard breakdown features let you add comments and content, like photos of locations and props, to specific sections of any scene.
  • Shot list management tools help you track your shooting schedule and progress.
  • Casting management tools let you assign parts and add casting notes.
  • Call sheet templates help you keep track of your personnel and coordinate your timing so no one falls through the cracks.
  • Digital asset management systems centralize and organize your project files so you and your coworkers can always find what you need fast.
  • Frictionless file sharing lets you easily share any asset of any size with anyone at any time.
  • Version tracking lets you create as many cuts as necessary without drowning in them.
  • Timestamped commenting via your software’s native cloud video player lets your clients critique or approve the details.
  • Closed-loop security protects your assets with restricted access levels, view tracking and expiring links.

Automation and Time Savings

The video editing tools that come with the best video production workflow software use automation to cut down your hours spent transcoding, editing and rendering. This gives you more time for the creative tasks that the software can’t do yet, like brainstorming fresh ideas, writing eye-popping scripts and filming viral footage.

For instance, all versions of Avid’s Media Composer come with an automated transcoding process that massively speeds up clip ingestion at the beginning of your postproduction workflow. This process automatically organizes and repackages your raw clips into an Avid-friendly format that the program can quickly load and locate.

Advanced video editing software can then automate many otherwise repetitive tasks in the editing process, like transitions, background removal, motion tracking, audio cleanup, beat syncing, captioning, etc. Some come with edit detection features that suggest cut and splice points in your footage for your final approval. Automated color matching lets you select a reference point and then tweaks the color values of each of your clips to match your reference. Tools like Avid’s ScriptSync can index all your project’s dialog in searchable text format that links back to individual source clips for quicker compilation.

Once your video is edited, automated rendering and encoding templates can pick the right aspect ratios and resolutions for your desired distribution platforms. Some can automatically render multiple formats and sizes in the background while you work on other projects, giving you options to choose from.

Software and Tools for Optimizing Video Production

What software and tools can help you optimize your video production process? Video production optimization tools come in three main flavors:

  • Video editing software that streamlines your editing workflow with automation, real-time collaboration and multi-platform compatibility
  • Asset management systems that help you organize and locate your media assets efficiently during production
  • Cloud-based collaboration features that bring your remote team members together across different workflow stages with cloud storage, project management and other communication tools

Let’s take a look at a few of the top options.

Video Editing Software

Filmora has great automated transcription and noise removal. Its AI Smart Cutout tool can quickly remove visual detritus from the background of any clip, and its AI Audio Stretch can match the length of an audio clip to a video clip. For distribution, its AI Auto Reframe gives you good formatting options for popular social media platforms.

Adobe’s Premiere Pro integrates with Adobe’s Sensei AI to help automate color correction and captioning. Its Morph Cut tool smoothly automates transitions, and its Remix feature uses AI to sync video and audio, even matching visual action to your soundtrack’s sick beat. It also has an Auto Ducking tool that can ride the gain on your background music to emphasize dialog.

Avid Media Composer’s ScriptSync AI can sort clips by their dialog, and its PhraseFind AI lets you use text search to find the exact place among all your source clips that a certain phrase was spoken. Media Composer can also integrate with Microsoft’s Azure AI Video Indexer to automatically identify elements in a clip, like individual faces, the total number of people, brand logos, etc.

Asset Management Systems

Scenechronize is a production manager that lets you organize, tag and securely share your production assets on the cloud. Its automated templates can generate call sheets, location maps, production schedules, etc., and its AI script comparison tool helps you consolidate different document versions.

Assemble is an asset manager that gives filmmakers a quiver of tools to help automate the entire production workflow and keep everyone in your team on the same page, including calendar syncing, task tracking, asset sharing, contextualized feedback and more.

Cloud-Based Collaboration Tools

Dramatify is a production management software that helps your team collaborate using script breakdown tools, automated schedule analytics and a dashboard with production updates in real-time. It can also track RSVPs and automatically generate cue cards from your rundown.

GoVisually lets your team add status updates like “approved” or “needs review” to each uploaded file and then group and label comments or revisions by category. You can also create trackable to-do lists and even turn on email notifications for specific kinds of feedback.

Avid’s Edit on Demand gives you a complete cloud-based video production suite, including lots of cloud storage and a cloud version of Media Composer optimized for remote collaboration.

Elevating Your Video Production Workflow

You can take a lot of the uncertainty out of your video production by using a well-defined workflow that cycles through four key stages: preproduction, production, postproduction and distribution. Using advanced video editing software, asset management systems and cloud-based collaboration tools can elevate that workflow even further, enhancing your team’s efficiency and allowing you to focus on the big picture.

Try out Avid’s Media Composer Ultimate completely free for 30 days to get a taste of some of the video industry’s most advanced automation and remote collaboration tools.

References:

[1] https://www.lonestar.edu/33315.htm

[2] https://www.colorado.edu/engineering-facultystaff/sites/default/files/attached-files/video_production_workflow_1.pdf

[3] https://www.ipr.edu/blogs/digital-video-and-media-production/what-are-the-phases-of-film-production/

[4] https://trint.com/blog/why-video-editing-workflow-important-and-how-to-optimize

[5] https://www.avid.com/press-center/avid-media-composer-delivers-over-the-shoulder-collaboration-to-film-and-broadcast-production-workflows/

[6] https://www.wrapbook.com/blog/call-sheet

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