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03/03/2009

Al Jazeera English Streamlines Worldwide Newsgathering Operations With ScheduALL

ScheduALL, a leading provider of enterprise resource management (ERM) software for the broadcast and media industry, has announced that Al Jazeera English, the English-language news channel headquartered in the Middle East, is managing its staff and media resources workflow and cost accounting for its global newsgathering operations with ScheduALL software, integrating four broadcast centres and feeds from 69 news bureaus.
Serving as the bookings tool for ad hoc, occasional and recurring satellite, fiber and broadband global area network (BGAN) ftp feeds coming into the broadcaster's headquarters in Doha, Qatar, along with its three production facilities in London, Kuala Lumpur and Washington D.C., the ScheduALL system at Al Jazeera English brings vital scheduling information into other technical areas of broadcast operations, ensuring that events are actuated and completed according to the booking.
An integrated cost tracking capability links external supplier costs to each work order, supporting financial reporting ScheduALL, the automation of this workflow has improved efficiencies of existing resources allowing users to improve their productivity; greatly enhanced the financial visibility of key projects across multiple business units around the globe; and contributed to improving Al Jazeera's cost control efforts.
Nick Taylor, head of news operations at Al Jazeera English, said: "As an international news organisation, we need an effective means of tracking our booking costs and making sure that we are using our resources to their fullest potential.
"ScheduALL offers valuable transparency of real-time information across multiple sites, encompassing the whole organisation. The detailed audit trail provided by the software allows us to evaluate critical areas of our operations and make informed decisions about how we manage and invest in resources."
Al Jazeera English installed its ScheduALL system as the channel's new broadcast facility was being completed and today the software supports scheduling for all four broadcast centres, as well as feeds acquired from 69 news bureaus. Despite the underlying complexity of the workflow, the operation of the ScheduALL system is made simple by customised user interfaces, which provide the right information to the right staff members, whether in the master control room, audio control room or newsroom. Some key production aids are the template-based work order creation, which not only speeds bookings, but also reduces the risk of entry errors, while the conflict flagging feature minimises the possibility of double-booking resources needed to process incoming feeds. This streamlined approach has led to significant cost savings and has ensured a smooth booking process.
Joel Ledlow, CEO of ScheduALL, said: "Through the integration of ScheduALL into its broadcasting, operations and technical facilities, Al Jazeera took a proactive approach to building smart, profitable operations.
"By leveraging real-time booking data, ScheduALL enables business and financial managers to view on a daily basis, how specific costs compare against projected budgets. While the software's booking tools support smooth feed scheduling, its reporting capabilities offer the insight required to manage that process cost-effectively."
Further information about ScheduALL and its robust software solutions is available online at: www.scheduall.com.
(KMcA)
VMI.TV Ltd

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