What advice would you offer someone who is interested in the runner program?
As a runner, you are provided a unique opportunity to engage with and interact with so many individuals in the studio. It may seem overwhelming, like a paradox of choice of sorts– the post-production industry is vast. But the connections I was able to make in that position have benefited me beyond my time in client services. I would suggest making sure that as a runner, you are detail-oriented, and curious. Continue learning in your role, and take the opportunity to ask those that are more knowledgeable than you about their experiences. You may never know where you may end up, which sounds totally cliche, but is true. Invite your coworkers to coffee, or even a chat during your break, and really connect with the people that you are surrounded by. Approach the role with diligence and care– you are the first face that clients, and anyone visiting the office sees. Their first impression of The Mill. The role is an integral part of the client-facing experience, and taking care and putting in all of your efforts in going above and beyond is what makes those that are entering The MIll for the first time, or are returning, continue to work with the studio.
Talk us through your new role as Services Coordinator.
My department deals with deliverables for clients. In other words, once a “spot” or a commercial, has been finished, and client-approved, my department is in charge of ensuring that each video is in the appropriate codec depending on the platform that the spot will be aired on. Youtube, Broadcast, Social Media, etc. are types of platforms that we would create a unique encode for, depending on the video requirements of each, which varies. We also have a QC, or quality control process to make sure that audio, visuals, and specs are up to par. I help in mapping out possible codecs for each delivery, as well as exporting codecs, and QC’ing. Because I have a horrible sweet tooth, I’ll make the analogy that if The Mill were a bakery, my department would be in charge of shipping each batch of cookies out, and customizing and packaging each box based on each client’s preference.
Did you know you wanted to go into Services or did you explore other departments beforehand?
As a runner, I did explore other departments; I had an interest in many of them. It felt like I was a kid in a candy store at times, there are so many avenues to go into. I really like what the Experience team does, and motion capture was, and still is an interest of mine. I also have an interest in production and design as well. I shadowed John Moss in Services while I was a runner, and grew an interest in the Services department, as prior to that it was sort of an enigma to me. I knew people in Techops, which works closely with services, and it was a nice transition– I was able to work part-time in Services for a few weeks, before completely transitioning over.
How did your time as a Runner prepare you for Services?
Attention to detail! It’s not always inborn, but being a runner really prepared me for that aspect of the job. Also, the hospitality that comes with being a runner is essential when I am communicating with clients and producers, so that we are all on the same page when it comes to what they need, and how we can best be of service to them. There were very few new faces that I met, which I owe to the runner position. I was able to work with people that I had already known, as being front of house, you essentially have to know everyone in the office, because you will interact or engage with them in some way.
What are you enjoying most in your new position?
Quite a few things! I really enjoy learning new skills, and this position has enabled me to know more about the post-production process. It is the last stop before client’s receive the finished product, and the public sees a finished commercial. I love being more involved in that process, and being able to see the fruits of the studio’s labor in conceptualizing and completing a project. I also enjoy the people that I work with. My department is so lovely, and always willing to lend a helping hand, which is incredibly invaluable.