A team of 15 producers, editors, and shooters are responsible for creating all of TIME’s video assets—from one-minute news clips to feature-length documentaries.
Jonathan Woods, an Executive Producer at TIME, is at the frontlines of the company’s video operations, spanning breaking news, culture, politics, sports, entertainment, and beyond. Planning and executing their content calendar means more than sourcing and assigning creative ideas: it also means budgeting, invoicing, handling production logistics, inventory tracking, managing freelancers, and organizing film festival an d award submissions–resulting in complex production systems. Much of Woods’ time is spent increasing transparency and efficiency between his teams.
Erica Solano works closely with Woods. Her purview as production coordinator involves overseeing budgeting, tracking invoices, and ensuring timely payments to vendors–whether they’re DPs, transcription services, or hair and makeup artists.
“There was a lot of data entry. Because I'm the collection coordinator for TIME, Money, Fortune, and Coinage, I'd have to type in information here and go to another spreadsheet and type in the same information there—it was a time suck,” Solano said. The invoice submission-to-payment cycle could take up to three months. All the while, vendors wouldn’t know the status of their invoice or when they would receive a payment. With a high volume of invoices from freelancers and vendors at various stages of the cycle, Solano needed a tool that could not only track every step, but also trigger alerts, elucidate how they were pacing against budgets, and offer transparency to stakeholders (such as Woods).
“It’s actually strengthening our coverage.”