How MLB.com uses automated workflow to ensure success

Baseball season abruptly took a turn for the worse for all the Dodgers and Angels fans in our offices, but it remains the best time of year for baseball fans – and a busy time of year for MLB Advanced Media, the multimedia arm of Major League Baseball. Because of the company’s unprecedented success, it’s branched out beyond baseball to help deliver March Madness, Wrestlemania, pay-per-view boxing and other events and broadcasts.

Rob Boysko, MLB Advanced Media’s manager of multimedia publishing, took the stage at Collabosphere to explain how iMeet Central—and, specifically, iMeet Central’s automated workflow—has helped his team ensure success as they’ve grown. And grow they have! After starting with 10 users in 2009, they now have over 500 users in the system.

 

Cutting out the clutter and confusion

“The challenge for us is to make sure that all of our content groups – editorial, multimedia, social, everybody that’s working on a nightly basis on all 15 games that are going on – are all getting notified and all know about the latest content coming through the system, where it’s supposed to be on the site, who’s sponsoring it, who owns it and when it should be posted on their own site,” Boysko said. Once upon a time, this resulted in a blizzard of emails between editorial and social teams. In the more streamlined process now in place, alerts and notifications occur automatically; stakeholders are notified in real-time as soon as a new asset arrives in the system. When a record is updated, a task can be automatically created and assigned to an individual team member.

“We have people that are assigned to each game, so if someone is assigned to Los Angeles vs. San Francisco, they see when a piece of content needs to go out,” Boysko said. “If Kershaw pitched an amazing game and we want to put together a pitching reel, we have an editor assigned to the game; once the pitching reel goes on the board, that editor specifically gets a notification saying ‘Hey, you have new content to edit.’ That doesn’t need to go to everybody across the board, it doesn’t need to go to all our editors, just the specific person assigned to the specific game. So it’s nice – it keeps down everybody’s individual emails, but the right people get the information as they need it.” In 2012, Boysko estimated that iMeet Central had helped reduce internal email between 60 and 70 percent.

Other results? Less time spent updating records and less time chasing after colleagues to take action. When users log in each morning, they see all of the pertinent information right in front of them, letting them know exactly which tasks to tackle.

“There wasn’t a back and forth anymore,” Boysko said. “We’re taking care of our clients a lot better through using these workflows based off databases. We get the right information out no matter who’s working, whether it’s someone’s first day in or it’s one of our seasoned pros. They all get the same information.”

Boysko finished with some words of wisdom for anyone looking to evaluate and streamline their own outdated work processes. “Think big,” he said. Look for your stumbling points, look for gaps in information, and don’t be afraid of failed experiments.

You can watch the full session below, starting with an in-depth presentation on workflow by Kevin Lewis, iMeet Central’s manager of support.

Adam McKibbin
Post by Adam McKibbin

Adam McKibbin is the content marketing manager for iMeet Central. His writing has been featured in Adweek, the Chicago Tribune and The Nation, and he’s produced content for some of the leading tech brands on the Fortune 500.

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