Quick Tips: Time Savers

by Don Elliot

In SAW and the new SawStudio:If you would like quick access to your soundfiles by not having to prowl through many choices of drives and locations in a myriad of dropdown items, try this next idea Ron Shapiro at Clear Channel in LA advises: Under “options” in Directory Path Setup: Browse to set up the default path for opening soundfiles, EDLs and Recording soundfiles. Then remember to “save preferences” under the “file” pull down.

As for saving time, I think the biggest thing is to back up all of your sessions. If the station does the same promotion next year, you would still have the bulk of a promo done and just have to change the specifics. Also, if a station goes through a slogan change, you don’t have to re-do all the imaging from scratch. You only have to change the “slogan” part of sweepers that can still air after the change.

Mike Wade (ABC, Dallas) weighed in on how to Streamline Work Flow and Processes at the Station: This works only if the Imaging guy also does the bulk of the commercial production. It’s sort of a self-discipline thing: Train the sales staff that spec spots will be done first thing in the morning. As in, “if I have the copy I’ll whack it today, if not then tomorrow, but no sad stories about a scheduled “meeting” at 10 that morning.”

The 48 hour rule is nice, but in the real world, I found that slapping them together and movin’ ‘em out worked best. If the client places an order, you’re just going to have to change the copy and recut it again anyway. Right?

Imaging came next for me. And it was cruise till you lose. How ever long it took, is how much time I gave it. If that meant I couldn’t start commercial production till the middle of the afternoon, then so be it. The spots can then be prioritized and assigned. Dubs and tags are the first off your plate, then you give the more “demanding” items your personal attention. One word about assigning spots: Assign nothing that isn’t in house when you leave. Your Traffic Director and Continuity people will thank you when the Morning Show calls at 5 a.m. when they’re missing a spot.

One last thing: If you signed up to do a “cart check” before the end of the day, do it. A smart Traffic person will always direct that “middle of the night” phone call to the Production guy, because as far as anyone knew - all the spots were in.

One last time-saver comes to mind. Production people should be just like jocks. Freshen that demo once a month. It will save you lots of time landing your next gig.

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