Quantum StorNext Manages Content Tsunami for the University of Alabama

The University of Alabama’s broadcast production team is responsible for creating a wide range of content for promoting the school and keeping the university community engaged. The team produces everything from television commercials and web-based promotional videos to Snapchat and Instagram posts.

That video content is in high demand. “To support our athletic teams alone, we produce in-venue content for several hundred events every year,” says John Lassiter, director of the broadcast production team. “Keeping up with demand requires a storage environment that can help streamline our production workflow and archive a growing amount of content.”

When Lassiter began at the university, he needed to build a new video production environment from the ground up. Implementing centralized, shared storage was key. “In the past, producers worked in silos,” says Lassiter. “But when we create highlight videos from longform events like commencement ceremonies, we need all five of our producers plugging away on the same content at the same time.”

The team also wanted to make it easier for producers to find content fast. “If you’re working drive to drive, you know how difficult it is to locate files and reuse content when you have no idea where footage or assets may exist,” says Lassiter.

To select a storage infrastructure for his team, Lassiter turned to 1303 Systems—a solution provider specializing in media workflows. “I’m not an expert in digital storage, and technologies change fast,” says Lassiter. “I had worked with 1303 Systems before, and I knew the team would present the best solution for our particular needs.”

On the recommendation of 1303 Systems, Lassiter’s team selected a Quantum storage solution powered by the StorNext file system. StorNext provides shared storage that facilitates collaboration. “With the Quantum solution in place, we now have a centralized storage environment where our team members can access content quickly and archive it efficiently,” says Lassiter. “It has been a tremendous help for us.”

Faster access to content helps accelerate the entire production workflow. “The StorNext environment is the heart of our production team,” says Lassiter. “Without it, we would work at a tenth of the pace we work at now.”

Overall, the Quantum solution is having a measurable—and very positive—impact on productivity. “I have five producers on my staff, and we’re completing 60 to 70 videos per month,” says Lassiter. “We’re really firing on all cylinders—and it’s because of this Quantum StorNext infrastructure.”

Looking ahead, Lassiter knows his team can build on Quantum StorNext to address evolving video production requirements. “We currently publish videos at 1080p, but we shoot some video at 4K,” says Lassiter. “By working with Quantum and 1303 Systems, we have a strong foundation for moving to higher-resolution formats in the future.”

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