Is Your Point-to-Point Infrastructure Missing the Point?

Automating content exchange in the new era of everywhere

When it comes to automating content exchange in a global and increasingly complex environment, media and entertainment industry leaders around the world must ask themselves, “Can my technology stack meet the moment and is it agile enough for whatever comes next?” Unfortunately, a hard “no” is the answer we hear the most. Much has changed of late including newer networks, more storage types, far more partners and larger datasets with security risks being at an all-time high. Below are five key considerations as you prepare to meet the moment.

1. Are you considering or have you recently upgraded your network?

To meet today’s challenges, companies are upgrading their networks. Many find that bandwidth alone isn’t enough. With older software, you won’t be able to take full advantage of those one, five or even ten Gbps pipes and you won’t get the performance you need. 

  • Are you being charged extra to use the new bandwidth you’ve already paid for?  

2. Has your storage landscape become more complex?

In the new hybrid cloud/multi-cloud world, assets are stored in multiple places and need to be moved easily between locations and storage types. Seamless content exchange within and between companies is paramount in today’s world. Legacy transfer technology was designed for on-premises file-based storage but we’re in a world where file and object storage are in play, both on-premises and in the cloud. 

  • Are you using file and object storage? 
  • Do you currently use or plan to move workloads to Amazon, Microsoft or Google? 
  • Are your solutions fully storage independent?

3. Are you working with more partners, more content and more destinations?

Growing complexity is the sign of our times as more content needs to go to more platforms and companies are working with more partners to deliver. It should be easy to add and remove partners and monitor and control content flow without custom installs or sharing passwords and sensitive network information. 

  • How easy is it for you to onboard and offboard new partners? 
  • Do you have the visibility and control required? 

4. Can you keep up with today’s security challenges?

The explosion of destinations creates parallel security concerns. You must secure your high-value file-based content in flight. Your customers and partners mandate security requirements. 

  • Do you feel good about your audit trails, centralized visibility and control? 
  • Is your software compliant with the industry’s highest standards?

5. How easy is it to build with and extend your content exchange tools?

Media companies need vendors who act like partners first and take a vested interest in your long-term success. 

  • Do your vendors provide first-class, white-glove customer support? 
  • Are your vendor pricing structures easy to understand or full of hidden “gotcha’s”?  
  • Does your content exchange platform offer modern, event-driven, easy-to-integrate APIs? 
  • Are your tools flexible enough to keep up with the rapid rate of change? 

More to Explore

If your answers leave you feeling less than fully prepared, we invite you to explore the collection to learn how companies like NBC, NFL, NHL, Discovery, Sky, BBC, ESPN, Streamland Media and others are modernizing the way they automate content exchange across their supply chains.

FTP & rsync: Unfit for Modern Times

Many media and entertainment businesses continue to rely on legacy technologies like rsync and FTP scripts out of familiarity or the misguided perception that they’re free. While there’s technically no charge to use FTP or rsync, the “hidden costs” can be enormous and unpredictable. Unfortunately, in failing to leverage more modern solutions, the media organizations that continue to depend upon old tools that are rife with problems put themselves at a disadvantage. 

FTP and rsync lack acceleration technology and can't take advantage of all available bandwidth.
A lack of Checkpoint Restart means that interrupted transfers won't automatically restart from the point of failure.
They lack centralized control and visibility.
Without built-in notifications, errors can be devastating.
Inter-company transfers are cumbersome, labor-intensive and open up security risks.
Security is not standard.

The bottom line is that old technology like FTP and rsync simply weren’t designed for the modern challenges faced in media and entertainment.

Solving Common Problems with Simple Automation

Time is the ultimate enemy of media operations teams who measure content in terabytes and time in minutes. You need modern media management tools that work at the speed of business and can flex for the needs of today and tomorrow. The Signiant Platform, which includes Jet, our modern automated one-to-many file transfer service, gives operations managers and IT personnel alike more time to say, “Yes, we can do that,” to increasingly complex, numerous and ambitious projects. Here is a short list of challenges where automation can save precious hours:

Backing up work-in-progress (WIP) files to the cloud.

Have you ever lost a drive? Are you backing up your WIP nightly?? Your resources are expensive. What if something goes wrong? Backing up WIP files should be easy, economical and preferably off-prem. Your nightly automatic backup to the cloud should be set-it-and-forget-it.

Automating content distribution to multiple locations simultaneously.

Are you using manual processes to deliver content to multiple places? Automating distribution is a great way to simplify operations, saving time and money. 

Follow the sun workflows.

You have production in Asia, Europe and North America. Your people need content ready to be worked on when they arrive in the morning. Media files are in a class of their own. Why rely on FTP, rsync and services like Dropbox, WeTransfer and Google Drive that waste precious time struggling to make transfers while your creative people could be working on what they do best? 

Securing content exchange with partners.

You make lots of inter-company transfers. You need to make that easy and secure. Keep partners happily on their side of the fence and not rooting around in your storage. Each partner should have complete control and visibility of transfers into and out of their network.

Replicating across locations.

You have three different internal locations and people working in different places. You want all your content automatically replicated and available across all internal locations, for example, London-New York-Los Angeles, or wherever it may be.

Moving workloads to the cloud.

You need tools that can accommodate massive datasets for any kind of automated cloud I/O including hot folder workflows, scheduled transfer jobs, sophisticated operations triggered by events coming from many systems, backup, disaster recovery, etc. And you want the flexibility to deliver to any cloud provider you choose from any number of locations.

Working with an assorted mix of storage types.

Every company wants to maintain its own unique mix of storage, including on-premises file storage and cloud object storage. Storage flexibility minimizes time spent searching for workarounds.

And Much More

Automating recurring, time-critical transfers offload routine tasks from content creators, producers, and distributors alike. Eliminate the need for time-consuming manual tuning while optimizing transfer speed and performance on any IP network.

Learn more about Signiant Jet
The easiest way to automate system-to-system large file transfers between locations around the globe at unprecedented speeds. Jet helps you maximize one of your most valuable assets — your time.

Case Study: Sim Streamlines Post-production Operations

Signiant Note: Soon after first publishing this case study, Sim Post was acquired by Streamland Media and incorporated into their picture and sound divisions.

“When we’re sending media to and from VFX vendors, they often use crappy FTPs, and every single vendor that’s on the job will have their own iteration of that. Trying to manage 20 or 30 different mechanisms for file IO is a nightmare,” Jesse Korosi laughs.

Korosi is no stranger to chaotic post-production workflows as director of workflow management at Sim Post, which showcases an impressive resume, including “OJ: Made in America”, HBO’s “Watchman,” “Deadpool 2,” and “Game of Thrones.” 

With facilities and work spread across Los Angeles, Toronto, New York, Vancouver, and Atlanta, Sim is witness to an increasingly complex production supply chain with varying deadlines, production demands, larger file sizes, and an increasing amount of deliverables. 

Growing with the Simplicity of Signiant

In the past, Sim relied on Aspera to move the bulk of their dailies. However, as their roster of clients, projects, and collaborators grew, they needed a simpler solution to operate and adapt more easily to their evolving workflows. They turned to the Signiant Platform, already popular with users and partners alike. 

Hulu Monsterland branded Media Shuttle Share portal

Media Shuttle, part of the Signiant Platform, has been a central part of their current architecture since 2014. More than 300 end users access over 120 customized portals to share large, high-value assets from anywhere, any time. Yet growing production demands, more remote contributors, and expanding deliverables made for increasingly complicated and manually intensive workflows. 

“Our need was for a simple, fast facility-to-facility transfer mechanism to share between various sites. [Signiant] Jet targets that exact need,” Liam Ford, Sim’s senior vice president of post engineering, says. At the end of the day, that simplicity proved to be a crucial motivator for Sim’s decision to select Jet. 

An Easy Win

Signiant Jet is the perfect complement to Media Shuttle, automating regular transfers between locations and freeing up personnel to concentrate on more high-leverage tasks. That simplicity proved to be a crucial motivator to select Jet.

Jet and Media Shuttle are both built on the Signiant Platform. Where Shuttle supports ad hoc workflows with people involved, Jet adds automation. Since Sim already had its storage endpoints connected to the Signiant Platform, that made Jet an advantageous choice when they needed to automate certain tasks.

They selected Jet, in no small part because of its powerful automation and intuitive design. Sim leverages Media Shuttle and Jet together, each serving in distinct and essential ways. The key was the flexibility to adapt while keeping things simple to operate. 

“Jet fit that bill. It hit all the sweet spots of simplicity and reliability because it’s integrated into the Signiant Platform software that we already run for all of our Media Shuttle instances,” Ford explains. “We already have servers set up for it, so it just fit very easily into our infrastructure.”

Simplifying the Post-production Supply Chain With Jet

Sim's Jet Dashboard with transfer map and widget graphs
Signiant’s simple console allows visibility and control over all transfers to and from partners

Since deploying Jet, the software has become a significant element in Sim’s technology stack, with increasing amounts of regularly transferred content. This helped make teams more comfortable with the process and the idea of sending media back and forth to other facilities for collaboration purposes. It became central to their business. They were able to facilitate workflows involving discreet locations and teams. Moving 2K, 4K, 6K, and 8K files quickly between people and facilities is what makes the work they do possible. Before Jet, the production teams felt as though they needed to find workarounds to this critical process, which was frustrating.

“We are doing more because it’s easier,” Ford says. “Whereas, in the past, people might have tried to figure out a way not to collaborate because they were uncomfortable with the way that our facility-facility transfers worked before — now it’s easy.”

With frustration abated, Jet swiftly moves in-progress proxies, original sources, sequences, and software projects with ease. Concerns about speed and security are addressed with Signiant, even as the organization increasingly uses larger and larger files, like 6K and 8K.

Jet Connects Global Locations

Jet makes working across locations easier than ever. Because facilities are global, teams need access to the most up-to-date version of a file so that they don’t waste time working on something that’s no longer relevant. This requires constant communication and tools that guarantee an asset is where it needs to be, when it needs to be there, and in the most up-to-date form.

Offering a simple way to automate file movement along complex global supply chains, Jet improves content exchange both internally and with partners, including some of the biggest names in M&E.

Case Study: RTV Modernizes Its Content Exchange

Cityscape of the Slovenian capita Ljubljana
Cityscape of the Slovenian capital Ljubljana.

Located in the picturesque capital city of Ljubljana, national public broadcaster, and Olympics broadcast television rights holder from 2016-2022, RTV Slovenia produces programs for three national TV channels, two regional TV channels, two TV channels for the Italian and Hungarian national communities, three national radio channels, regional radio programs and a radio program for foreign citizens. 

Like many countries, the Olympic Games generate national interest and is one of RTV’s most-watched events. RTV provides access to local, national and international coverage to approximately two million people during the Games. 

The Old Way — Reliable but Slow, Expensive and Limiting

As recently as 2016 in Brazil and 2018 in Korea, RTV relied on satellite feeds to transfer content from the host country to their central broadcast station at home. 

For the 2016 and 2018 cycles, RTV recorded and edited segments as video files on site at the International Broadcast Centre (IBC). Files then played out over one of the ten expensive satellite links RTV had secured. Video segments would be re-recorded as new files in Ljubljana using different codecs. Video quality would suffer as a result during the transcoding process and the workflow was very slow. Highlights and packages had to wait until live satellite time was done.

New Ways, New Speed Bumps

For the pandemic-delayed event in Tokyo, RTV began replacing satellite feeds with private IP networks and using FTP to move the files. With improved long-distance internet speeds, this new approach looked to offer great cost savings, faster turnaround times, higher quality and much more flexibility — some of the many reasons why broadcasters around the world have turned to terrestrial IP networks.

Matjaz Fajdiga, RTV head of TV engineering explains the experience, “At Tokyo, FTP was not just a little, but quite problematic because of the delays. Using FTP you’re thinking, will it arrive on time?”

Because of FTP’s limitations, RTV editors quite often needed to wait for new content. This created moments of panic throughout the production. 

“FTP is simply unreliable, especially for such important workflows and long distances,” Fajdiga said.

Like Night & Day

A picture of RTV Slovenia’s headquarters in Lujublijana
RTV Slovenia’s headquarters in Lujublijana

Prior to Beijing, Fajdiga outlined his need for bandwidth management and faster, more predictable transfer speeds. The Signiant Platform allowed them to control the bandwidth which helped RTV protect other local traffic on the link such as live feature streams or VOIP applications.

“We spent a lot of time overcoming FTP issues in Tokyo,” said Fajdiga. “Jet and Media Shuttle solved those problems in Beijing. Simple as that. Everyone said it was like night and day.”

Feeds from Beijing were streamed to Ljubljana; the first time satellite links were not used. Events could be live streamed while parallel feeds could be recorded simultaneously for later broadcast.  

“During this event, we didn’t have any complaints about slowness, or missing files, or whatever. This is very important,” Fajdiga noted. “It’s the peace of mind you get with Signiant. You get reliability, and you get security because of the encryption. The whole team was saying, ‘We should’ve been doing this all along. What else can it do for us?’” 

Post-Beijing Reliability and Security with Jet and Media Shuttle

RTV branded Media Shuttle portal
Using custom-branded Media Shuttle interfaces, RTV users drag and drop files from any location for immediate transfer to their station in Ljubljana.

After RTV began subscribing to the Signiant Platform, they found other uses for it, solving problems RTV didn’t know could be solved using Signiant. 

RTV uses Signiant service to get content from Washington, London, Brussels, and Moscow, back into RTV, as well as day-by-day connections between Ljubljana and two regional centers, Maribor and Koper, 150 kilometers away. Once an editor finishes a show or segment, they send it to Ljubljana. When it arrives, it is confirmed by Signiant email notifications.

“I remember phone calls at five, six o’clock saying, ‘Where is the file? You sent it at three. It will be broadcast at eight.’ Nobody knows where it is, or why it hasn’t transferred, and there’s panic,” Fajdiga recalls. “With Signiant, if we lose the physical link during a transfer, we don’t need to transfer the whole file from scratch. We just continue where we stopped.”

RTV Jet Dashboard, jobs in progress, RTV headquarters to Beijing transfer.

A Deeper Sense of Calm

RTV understands the value of what Signiant provides to their organization. Prior to using the Signiant Platform, getting content delivered in-country, across time zones and oceans was a nerve-wracking and tense experience for many. Now, there is a deeper sense of calm, trust and value.

Fajdiga concluded, “Now, we have results. When you first use the Signiant software and see how it works, we are convinced that this is good, invested money. It is a service that is reliable, there all the time, and without an interruption.”

Upgrading Your Network? Why Intelligent Transport Matters 

Manually optimizing IP networks for fast, seamless, global access to media assets is complicated, and macro trends in technology make this even more so. With hybrid cloud and multi-cloud initiatives supporting workflows that are increasingly global and interconnected, more variables are in play than ever before. Dynamic network conditions, growing file sizes, new storage options, distributed teams, and business partners, along with constant change, are real challenges in today’s modern media landscape.

Transport Controls that Impact Speed

To optimize transport speed, there are a number of parameters that require consideration. How these parameters are set has a significant impact on performance; however, it’s difficult and time-consuming for organizations to continually and manually optimize using these controls. The optimal value for controls varies widely based on operating environments, and controls are interdependent. Signiant patented intelligent transport determines optimal values for these controls automatically so that you don’t have to.   

Three of the most important controls we can adjust are: 

Choice of transport-layer protocol (TCP vs. Signiant UDP)

TCP is the best choice for a transfer between two servers in the same rack in a data center where Signiant UDP is usually the best choice for transferring between Buenos Aires and Singapore over the public Internet, but what about every scenario in between?

The amount of parallelism

The number of parallel streams determines how data is read from and written to the network and to the storage at either end of the transfer. Streams on a network are analogous to lanes on a highway. Bigger, wider lanes are useful if you have large vehicles, like trucks, that can fill them. In contrast, smaller, narrower lanes are more efficient for smaller vehicles, like motorcycles. In the network world, the number of streams is impacted by more than just the nature of the moved content. The compute resources and the storage type at each endpoint both play a major role in determining the optimal number of streams.

Pipelining strategies

Much like parallelism, pipelining configuration depends on the makeup of the dataset and the storage types in play. If a file is small enough, the file metadata can be larger than the file content. Signiant employs protocols that send multiple files over a single connection and handle file-level acknowledgments asynchronously.

Signiant's technology can control, limit and take advantage of all bandwidth

The Signiant Advantage

Bandwidth can be a scarce resource, especially when moving the large files and data sets common in Media. Signiant’s advance transport technology can control, limit or take advantage of all available bandwidth.

Metadata Inputs into the Intelligent Transport

The Signiant machine learning model utilizes current and historical anonymized information about operating conditions to make intelligent decisions on which transport settings to use. The more businesses connected, the more Signiant learns about the wide variety of possible conditions a business may face. 

  • Type of Content: For stream-based content, the content’s maximum or target bit rate is a critical piece of metadata that informs how fast is fast enough. For file-based content, the files’ sizes and the number of files impact the ratio of file content to file metadata and inform streaming and pipelining strategies. 
  • Type of Storage: Information about storage on either end of a transfer is another piece of environmental metadata impacting performance that informs how the platform optimizes transport.
  • Bandwidth and Network Conditions: Some of the most critical environmental variables are, of course, related to network conditions — available bandwidth, the distance data is traveling, and who else the network or portions of the network are shared with. Technically speaking, distance and congestion impact latency, jitter, and packet loss and inform when to use TCP vs. Signiant UDP and parallelism and pipelining decisions.
  • Computing Resources: The amount of memory, the CPU speed, and the number of servers or CPU cores per server at the source and destination all impact how Signiant tunes the platform. All three of the key controls are influenced by this information.

Winning the Battle of Network Optimization

Signiant has a unique lens into today’s challenges in the media supply chain. Every day, millions of media assets are accessed via our platform which can handle any-size file, datasets with millions of smaller files, and live streams. From that vantage, we see every type of private and public IP network with a wide variety of available bandwidth and constantly changing conditions. Each of these elements impacts performance, which makes optimizing content exchange a constant battle. By combining our advanced transport technology with the power of machine learning applied to the vast amount of metadata aggregated across our platform, Signiant patented intelligent transport architecture fights that battle, so you don’t have to.

Cloud Handshake: Easy, Secure Content Exchange with Partners

When a finished media asset is distributed to all the broadcast and streaming platforms on which it will be made available, it will have passed through multiple internal systems. While some projects are still completed entirely in-house, most media and entertainment companies now rely on a network of external partnerships that contribute specialized skills and expertise at various stages of production. Each time an asset moves between organizations, there may be new security considerations and auditing requirements, as well as new storage locations and types. This often-intricate network places significant pressure on organizations to develop an adaptable inter-company content exchange infrastructure that is simple to set up and maintain, provides visibility and control, and doesn’t invite intrusion into internal networks or storage.

The Trusted Broker for Inter-company Content Exchange

Since the earliest days of file-based workflows, Signiant has been a trusted broker for inter-company content exchange. While Signiant is known as a leader in file movement and acceleration technologies, the company has evolved naturally to provide the logic and security for content transfer between organizations.

Signiant offers a range of software solutions, each of which addresses a different class of inter-company file transfer use cases:

  • Flight Deck helps the world’s largest media companies automate the movement of petabytes of data, both within and between companies.
  • Our cloud-native SaaS application, Media Shuttle, connects more than 50,000 companies for manual, person-initiated inter-company transfer.
  • Signiant Jet combines our expertise in automated file transfer and our leadership in cloud-native SaaS to offer automated content exchange to companies of all sizes.

A Next-Generation Approach with Jet

Jet is built on the Signiant Platform, which also underpins the company’s widely-deployed SaaS product, Media Shuttle. The platform’s architecture separates the data plane, which moves the media assets themselves, from the multi-tenant control plane that orchestrates transfer jobs and authorizes inter-company content exchange with a simple and secure multi-party cloud handshake. This layer of abstraction not only simplifies the establishment of external partnerships, it also ensures that Signiant never takes custody of customer assets as they move from one company to the other.

A diagram showing Jet's SDCX SaaS architecture with on-premises and cloud storage locations.

Jet Inter-company Content Exchange

Using Jet, organizations of any size can work together to transfer content between their respective on-premises and/or cloud object storage. After establishing a cross trust using the simple yet secure cloud handshake mechanism, partners can build a route that connects source and destination storage locations. Mutually agreed upon transfer jobs can then move content from one company to the other.

Of course, even when working with a trusted partner, each company wants assurances that they’re only sharing the information they intend to make available externally. Signiant takes great care to ensure the creation of a Jet partner route is managed securely in the cloud, without having to share passwords or sensitive network information. Once a route connects partners, each company only has insight into that route and their own storage. At no time does either partner have access to the other organization’s network or storage locations. 

Chain of Custody, Visibility, and Reporting with Jet

When securing oversight of valuable content, media companies require a highly dependable source of truth about where and when assets are transferred. For automated system-to-system transfers using Jet, every administrator can customize their own set of notifications to receive information, such as completion details and alerts, for the transfer activity they choose to monitor. For critical transfer updates without the need to constantly monitor jobs via the product interface, partners can individually subscribe to Jet email notifications.

For completed transfers, the Jet interface displays job details, including when a job was last modified and by whom, and lists which files were moved by filename. Advanced search capabilities let each company’s Jet administrator pinpoint the transfer information they need, even across the entire transfer history of a particular job or route.

Simplifying the Complexity of a Partner Ecosystem

With thousands of media and entertainment companies already connected to the Signiant Platform through Jet and Media Shuttle, Signiant makes it easy for organizations — large and small — to establish and maintain productive partnerships. The speed, security and visibility that define our modern approach to inter-company content exchange all expedite the flow of assets along media supply chains and ensure that the global appetite for creative content is satisfied.

Watch: Bandwidth Management Puts You in Control

Signiant advanced transport technology moves content anywhere in the world at blazing speeds, taking advantage of all available bandwidth. However, bandwidth can be a scarce resource and is often shared by many applications. The Signiant Platform puts you in control of exactly how much bandwidth you make available to each transfer job and when.

Cloud, On-prem, or a Mix: We Believe in Storage Independence

Graphic demonstrating Signiant's storage independence across cloud providers as well as on-prem storage

File acceleration, security and storage independence are central tenets of the Signiant Platform and are foundational to the M&E industry. With respect to storage options, there are many to choose from with new technology coming to market frequently. This is why our products offer storage independence. 

We believe you should…

1. Choose for yourself which storage types make the best sense for your unique usage.

2. Enjoy the freedom to easily move assets between storage types and locations, whether file or object storage, on-prem or in the cloud.

3. Maintain 100% control over storing your valuable media assets. Products that bundle storage expose privacy and security risks.

4. Experience seamless integration across storage types. End users shouldn’t know or care how or where assets are stored.

5. Have the flexibility and agility to store assets anywhere and in any type of storage.

The Signiant Platform, with a foundation in advanced transport technology and its commitment to security and storage independence, provides fast, seamless and secure access to media assets no matter where or how they are stored.

Our Commitment to Your Security

When it comes to file transfer security, there’s much to consider. But one thing is clear — legacy tools such as FTP are no longer a workable solution for moving high-value content. 

Because our customers rely on Signiant technology to access and move their most valuable assets between teams, data centers, partners, remote workers, and to and from the cloud, we take every precaution to secure every layer involved in file movement. 

Designing Secure Software 

Building secure software requires a strong understanding of both the threats you’re protecting against and secure design principles. Without that depth of knowledge, security functions can be implemented in ways that don’t actually protect assets from threats. Our engineering team is trained to stay current on secure design principles, and we rigorously apply security functions such as: 

  • Authentication: to ensure users are who they say they are 
  • Authorization: to ensure that users and automated processes have access to only approved assets 
  • Data confidentiality: to protect data from unwanted disclosure 
  • Data integrity: to ensure data cannot be corrupted 
  • Non-repudiation: to make sure users cannot deny having taken an action
  • Availability: to protect from interrupted access 
  • Standards-based Transport Layer Security (TLS): to protect transmitted data
A security flow chart demonstrating protected assets, security functions, and potential threats.

The Signiant Security Culture

However, designing secure software is only half of the picture. Operating a secure service is equally important. As a market leader in cloud-native SaaS, Signiant employs service organization controls implemented in accordance with industry standards and best practices. At Signiant, security is much more than just applying technology to mitigate threats; it is deeply ingrained into our way of thinking about software development and operational procedures.

A red shield with a check mark at the top, and the words committed to security DPP productions, next to a similar one.

Committed to Security

The DPP’s Committed to Security Programme offers a common framework for addressing cybersecurity to help suppliers demonstrate their commitment to security best practice. Signiant was one of the first 20 companies to receive a DPP Committed to Security Mark.

Easy, Fast, Automated Backup to the Cloud

Is your company backing up all work-in-progress nightly?

Graphic displaying work-in-progress statistics: 50% of respondents don't back up their WIP daily, only 41% utilize cloud storage, and the cost of losing a single day's work for a small post house is $35K

In a survey hosted by postPerspective, several post-production companies were asked about their backup systems. Despite the high value of the work they do and the associated risk, most reported they don’t have appropriate tools and processes in place to protect their work-in-progress (WIP) and only a small number are using cloud storage. Historically, automated backup systems have been too expensive and complex for many companies, but that’s no longer the case — so, why aren’t more companies backing up their important work to prevent disasters? 

The Signiant Platform + Cloud = the Perfect Pair

The Signiant Platform makes it incredibly easy and cost-effective to back up WIP to the cloud. While it may be impractical to use cloud storage for every operation, cloud providers  offer easy, elastic storage in the cloud that is perfect for nightly backups. Public cloud providers offer multiple tiers of storage to help manage costs and include policy controls so you can easily and automatically expire old WIP or move older content to lower-cost tiers of storage such as AWS Glacier. The Signiant Platform works seamlessly with your on-prem storage and public cloud providers including AWS, Google, Microsoft and even emerging players such as Wasabi making it simple to automate backups to your cloud storage of choice.

“Once lost a project due to Raid (storage) failure…lost two weeks of work time.

Why Signiant?

Step One: Connect any on-prem storage to Jet
Step Two: Set up an AWS bucket and automated cleanup policies
Step Three: Control timing and frequency (E.G. run this job nightly at 7 PM)
Step Four: Jet runs automatically in the background and keeps everyone informed

SaaS: It’s Not Just the Software, Service Matters Too

With leading SaaS solutions, the software is not just delivered to you via the cloud; you’re also getting first-responder service teams. Our teams guide you through onboarding and help you make the most out of your investment; monitoring the software 24×7, managing upgrades and making sure the software is secure, resilient and performing optimally. We also help you with any issues that arise. SaaS is more than just software, the services are critical to creating customer value.

But not all vendors are fully invested in the relationship with their customers or service responsibilities, so what should you look for?

A graphic showing the cycle of continuous improvement.

Engaged Customer Success

Customer success teams should guide customers through the onboarding process and beyond, ensuring the product is utilized efficiently for their unique business. While a customer might have purchased a subscription for a very specific or limited use case in mind, often they’ll organically discover new ways they want to leverage the solution, and their customer success manager is always there to support them in getting those new workflows up and running.

Collaborative Customer Support

Customer support is the group that ties the product and customer success teams together, a key service in any software company. Traditionally, support teams are siloed away from most of the company or even outsourced. 

That is a missed opportunity and a failure in understanding the real value and insight these teams provide. The influence that many other companies shun is exactly what Signiant embraces, helping us to continue to design and update our products and our perspective based on what we hear from our industry.

Reliable and Vigilant SRE 

Site Reliability Engineering (SRE) methodology combines the entire software development, deployment, and monitoring lifecycle to ensure 24×7 availability for customers. Ideally, SRE is a cross-functional practice where developers are actively involved in releasing and monitoring the software they write.  

SRE is also a core aspect of defense-in-depth security practices and has software packages, audit tools, and scanning tools to ensure our products are as secure as possible. A strong SRE team adheres to peer-reviewed best practices and content security guidelines and is audited regularly. 

Continuous Monitoring

Best of breed systems are used to monitor availability and look for security issues.  

Continuous integration, verification and deployment is used to deliver new software capabilities rapidly and reliably including responding to threats.

Choose Your Partners Wisely

Partnering with a SaaS provider can be one of the best choices a business can make. But both customers and vendors must understand the demands and realities of the partnership that SaaS entails. Customers need to do their research to make sure their vendor is as reliable as their product. 

The right SaaS product can transform your business. But it’s the relationship you have with the vendor that will make that possible.

Watch: Using Hot Folders, Scheduled Jobs, Modern APIs

Improving efficiency often means automating repetitive workflows which can be complex and expensive for many businesses. Bringing simplicity to complicated workflows is a hallmark of the Signiant Platform. Find out how Signiant Jet simplifies automated file transfers for nearly any situation.

Why the M&E Industry Chooses Signiant

There was a time Signiant and Aspera were considered similar. Both organizations have been around for several years. Both offer proprietary acceleration technology that deliver high-speed transfers. But today we are very different. From the way Signiant delivers and supports its software, to its continued innovation, its commitment to storage independence and its focus on the media and entertainment industry, the days when the two were interchangeable are long behind us.

10 Reasons Why All-Sized M&E Companies Choose Signiant:

1. Simple, Powerful Product Portfolio: Signiant’s market-leading products cover any file transfer use case, underpinned by the Signiant Platform that connects more than 50,000 businesses. No matter where content needs to flow — between people, systems, partners, or to and from the cloud — Signiant has it covered.

2. Continued Innovation: Our patented intelligent transport ensures its advanced transport technology optimizes transfers on any IP network, including modern, super-high bandwidth networks. In 2020, Signiant was awarded its thirteenth patent for its intelligent transport architecture, which uses machine learning to adapt to network conditions in real time and is capable of multiple Gbps transfer speeds.

3. Forefront Of Cloud And Saas Innovation: Signiant was the first to connect the global media supply chain with a unique, hybrid SaaS platform. We continue to be the cloud and SaaS innovator for file transfer and a recognized leader with six of our 13 patents related to the cloud.

4. Command Center for File Access Across the Global Supply Chain: Signiant products provide centralized control and visibility at any scale including granular control of content movement, visibility into the health of the deployment, real-time feedback on the state of active transfers, and reliable chain-of-custody history.

5. Dedicated to All Users: Signiant software is easy to deploy, operate and use by all who come in contact. We recognize the need for separate user experiences for IT, operations and creative end users. Our software caters specifically to each of those roles. 

6. Customer-centric Teams: From providing a dedicated customer success manager to each customer, to our 24×7 SRE team keeping the platform operating with high performance and availability, to our customer support team that brings resolutions to close quickly — our world-class service teams are part of your Signiant SaaS subscription.

7. Dedicated to Providing Fast, Seamless Access: We believe you know best how to store your valuable assets, and we’re committed to your storage independence. Wherever they may be physically stored, on-prem or in the cloud, with Signiant your assets always remain 100% in your control.

8. Securing Every Layer Involved in File Movement: Enterprise-grade security is critically important to protect your content as it’s transferred around the world. We offer the only file transfer products that have been awarded the DPP’s Committed to Security Mark for both production and broadcasting.

9. Media Industry Expertise: Led by CEO Margaret Craig who brings a unique mix of business leadership and product expertise with decades of experience in media technology, Signiant has long focused on M&E as our core market. It’s in our DNA.

10. Simple, Predictable Pricing: Our annual subscription plans provide simple, no-surprises pricing — and we never charge for bandwidth. We pride ourselves on being easy to do business with and working with companies of all sizes to meet their business needs.

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