Broadcast, media and publishing form one of the most exciting sectors for advisory work. The harsh environment requires confident decision-making in an area full of trade-offs - quality versus cost control, cost control versus availability, availability versus need, need versus desire and desire versus quality. New technology raises both opportunities and threats - digital, pay-per-view, fibre optics, the internet. Z/Yen and its staff have deployed their techniques of performance and decision improvement within the broadcasting and media sector to great effect. In the last UK television franchise round, several Z/Yen staff played a key role in re-winning a regional licence and further roles in pre and post industry re-structuring, including the merger of substantial studio facilities.
Multi-modal formats put an increasing premium on understanding the inter-relationships of various forms of media and the underpinning technology. Z/Yen's work has spanned print, radio, television and computer-based media. Z/Yen and its staff have experience of the publishing sector, from the daily to the long-term, including clients such as Associated Newspapers, West Ferry Printers, Hodder & Stoughton, Oxford University Press, Cambridge University Press, Tolley, HouseBuilder and Dorling Kindersley. Z/Yen and its staff have experience of radio and television through work with BSkyB, BBC Radio Helpline, Jazz FM, Channel 4 and earlier work with Anglia, Central, LWT, Thames, TV-AM and BSB. Computer-based media work has included games (Argonaut), financial services (Bloomberg) and data services (Petroconsultants).
One client, whose business spanned television, radio, on-line services and publishing, invited Z/Yen to take a look at the underlying risks and rewards of their business. Working closely with the client, Z/Yen identified the paramount need to protect revenue, something not traditionally identified with the daily cut an thrust of programmes for daily broadcasting. Z/Yen helped simplify pricing and reconciliation leading to a specification for new financial systems which, when installed, improved collection and cashflow markedly while reducing the number of administrative staff. For a television client, Z/Yen staff worked on improving shareholder value. Z/Yen people put together a change management programme for staff which led to studio rationalisation, outsourcing of many internal functions, re-designed purchasing and measurement by asset value which in turn realised hidden value in old programming. Over a nine-month period, programme costs per hour were halved while in-house programming increased.
Z/Yen has helped organisations in all forms of broadcasting, media and publishing improve performance from programme bidding strategy to project management systems, from project risk management to management information design, from new internet services to reducing per unit costs. The revolution in new media has only just begun. The infrastructure of the 21st century is being laid today and Z/Yen seeks to work with organisations who want to make the most of the opportunities provided by new technology and new ways of working.