Turnaround time is a critical KPI for eCommerce content studios and refers to the time it takes to produce assets (like photos, video, and copy), from the moment a sample arrives at the studio until the requested assets are delivered.
What's the problem (and our solution)?
A closer look
Automation in Creative Force
Workflows, one of the foundational settings in Creative Force, outline particular flows, or defined paths, that your samples and product records follow during asset creation. With a defined workflow and software to manage it, you can take full advantage of the automation Creative Force offers.
Every studio has some type of workflow, but whether it is clearly defined and documented is another matter. A Creative Force workflow transforms a sometimes abstract idea into a clearly defined path that fully leverages customizations and automation.
In the Creative Force platform, the workflow guides the process that your samples and assets follow, outlining things such as production type and how images are selected (and by whom), post-production processes, and how final assets will be delivered. You can set up as many workflows as you need and have them work along with the style guide to automatically assign product records to the appropriate workflow.
Combined with a style guide, a broad workflow captures many different types of products, while a specific workflow contains particular products, brands, or clients. And creating new workflows or updating existing ones is simple and accessible. In Creative Force, you have complete control to set workflows exactly how you need and to refine them as your studio evolves.
Digital Style Guides
In creative production, there are a lot of decisions to be made, from which images to shoot to what they should look like. In many studios, once these decisions are made, they are documented for future reference in the form of a style guide and available to review for on-set teams who may need guidance.
But what if your style guide was more than a static document? What if your style guide was a driving part of a larger production system and used to trigger workflows, provide reference information, and name your final assets without any manual input required?
That’s style guides in Creative Force. They work together with workflows to guide production throughout the process, from the time a job is loaded in the system until final asset delivery.
At a high level, the style guide in Creative Force contains information that most style guides at any studio do. It shows you how many images you need and gives references to show you what they should look like. But it goes a bit deeper than that. In Creative Force, the style guide impacts the entire production process – it determines how many images to look for and whether or not to allow additional optional images, and it stores information relevant to photography and retouching teams.
The platform makes that information available with just a click and provides it in context – joined to appropriate files for the specific product your team is working with, and within the proper platform where you can make pertinent edits.
These settings affect how your teams interact with the integrated image capture panel for Capture One or Lightroom (using the Creative Force app Kelvin) by providing places for your photographers to drop necessary images, and the integrated Photoshop panel (using the Creative Force app Hue) by feeding important retouching notes and guidelines to post-production teams.
When it comes time to produce final assets, the style guide contains naming conventions and automatically titles approved images in accordance with customizable naming requirements.
Establish as many style guides as needed, and make them as broad or specific as desired. Because Creative Force is a powerfully automated multi-client platform with style guides created at the client level, there’s no limit to the level of detail and nuance that can be achieved.
Automated File Handling
By setting up detailed, conditional workflows before production even begins, you can automate the time-consuming, error-prone tasks that drastically affect your overall turnaround time. In Creative Force, one such workflow automation is file handling.
See how files are automatically routed to the right team members, at the right times, to keep production flowing.
Questions? Let's ... expand.
How does Creative Force work?
To simplify things a bit, Creative Force enables and elevates what we call flow production – a collaborative and continuous way of producing content at scale, where assets are moved individually through the many stages of production, as soon as they're ready.
This is in contrast to traditional batch production, where a single production stage is completed for all assets before they advance to the next step. Flow production eliminates bottlenecks and hold-ups, and Creative Force supercharges that concept with automation, metadata enrichment, integrated review tools, and so much more.
How is Creative Force different?
Let's first differentiate between studio software and studio management software. Creative Force is studio management software that optimizes the processes around specific areas of studio operations, like sample management or post-production management – in some cases by integrating directly with studio software your team uses daily, such as Capture One or Photoshop.
Other studio software solutions do a fine job of solving problems within particular, well-defined areas of operation. But only Creative Force takes a holistic approach to studio operations and provides the tools to effectively increase productivity and visibility across the entire content creation process.
Read more about how Creative Force compares to some alternatives out there →
Who can use Creative Force?
Creative Force is built to meet the needs of brands, retailers, and commercial studios engaged in high-volume content creation for eCommerce or editorial projects. If you work professionally with any of the above, chances are you'd see remarkable improvements to your workflows with Creative Force.
Every team from studio intake to styling to capture to post-production and beyond will benefit from the extensive workflow automation, increased production visibility, and many collaboration tools.