Outsourcing Arrangement Enables Company to Expand into New Markets
With dozens of daily newspapers, regional publications and trade and business magazines to scan for references to client companies, the staff of a European-based media service stayed busy round-the-clock clipping, copying and forwarding hundreds of news and advertising items each month to its customers key executives.
They also provided a value-added service by generating media analysis reports geared to help clients track public opinion or identify emerging trends. The key, however, was to turn this information around quickly and deliver it via e-mail or the Web within extremely tight deadlines – two or three hours, or even as short as 15 minutes.
To meet its growth objectives, however, the company realized that it needed to expand beyond its home country. But this wasn’t feasible with their current in-house staff. Hiring additional staff would consume most of the revenue generated by the expanded service. On the other hand, attempting to do the added work at current staffing levels would impair their ability to provide fast-turnarounds and other value-added services.
The firm quickly recognized that outsourcing key parts of the clipping service to a third-party provider made sense, but the firm’s management team also realized that they needed to do more than just find a low-cost service bureau. Instead they sought to cultivate a long-term partnership with a company that shared its commitment to quality and would maintain its high levels of services.
To that end, the media service chose Innodata Isogen, which has worked on some of the world’s largest and most complex digitization projects. The company’s Asian content manufacturing facilities, moreover, are equipped with the latest technology and experienced staff that could rapidly get up to speed and meet its customers' requirements.
To get off the ground quickly, the firm and Innodata Isogen simply moved key parts of the existing business process offshore. Image files captured at the firm’s headquarters were sent electronically to Asia, where Innodata Isogen personnel digitized the copy using optical character recognition software. The full text, graphics and captions of each story were saved as electronic files, and then compiled as printouts of the articles.
The team also settled on the format. Stories and images would be digitized onto A-4 sized pages, the European standard. Articles that continued on inside pages in the initial publications were united as contiguous stories, with all related photos saved along with captions and photo credits. Source information also was logged on each story, including the publication name, date, page, author, headline, circulation, a thumbnail image of the original publication and keyword highlighting to see the relevance in each clip.
Any errors were quickly caught by Innodata Isogen quality assurance teams, which compared the words and images with the original printed page. Once they’d met the firm’s accuracy requirements, Innodata Isogen returned the story clips to the main office via the Web for on-line delivery to executives within two hours of publication for magazines and within minutes for national daily papers.
By providing high-quality output files to the media services firm, Innodata Isogen helps the company maintain its high level of service and ensure that its clients stay abreast of what the public is reading about their companies, almost as soon as the news rolls off the press.
More important, partnering with a reliable outsourcing provider gives the company’s leadership team the confidence that it can expand into new markets and continue to meet the demanding needs of its clients.