Authors: Jon Finegold, Jodi Carter

In a recent survey hosted by postPerspective, we were shocked to learn that 50% of post-production companies that responded DO NOT automatically back up their work-in-progress (WIP) nightly. Given the high value of post-production work, the tight deadlines, and the business risk of losing even one day’s work, it is surprising that more don’t take precautions to protect their great work. The survey, which targeted mostly smaller post houses, suggested that the cost of losing just a single day’s work is roughly $35,000 USD on average, although this varied widely based on company size and the type of work. Imagine the exposure for a company that only backs up weekly or that has no backup system in place at all. Another surprise, given it’s 2021, is that only 41% reported using cloud storage today. Certainly, the economics of using the cloud for all operations may not make sense, but the cloud can be a perfect ally when it comes to cheap, elastic storage for backup operations.   

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

“Our central storage network was wiped by a helpful colleague who thought it was their job to wipe data when updating software/hardware.” 

“Servers were lost once due to A/C failure. It took 2.5 days to recover from LTO tapes.” 

  A Perfect Use of Cloud Technology  

One challenge, particularly for smaller post houses, is that automated backup systems have historically been too expensive and too complex. Today, modern tools make it easy and cost-effective to back up to the cloud for businesses of any size. This is one of many areas where cloud technology has proven to be a disruptive force.   

Since the launch of Amazon Web Services in March of 2006, the cloud has taken off in ways that were unthinkable back then. Cloud services now include advanced machine learning, media processing tools, complex database services, and much more. It’s now possible to build almost any software solution using the tools offered by the big public cloud providers. Even 15+ years in, S3, the first service offered by AWS, provides easy, scalable storage in the cloud and remains one of the most widely used services. With S3, you pay only for the storage you use. Amazon offers policy controls to easily clean up files that are no longer needed or move certain assets into cheaper storage tiers such as Glacier. With these controls in place, cloud storage becomes even more cost-effective, especially for backup operations where copies of work-in-progress may only make sense to keep for a few days before aging it out for newer versions. For example, if your team is backing up 500GB of data each day but automatically cleaning up old WIP every seven days, the cost for that storage would be roughly $1,000 for the entire year using standard AWS pricing.  

The challenge, of course, isn’t just the cost of the storage but the expertise required in-house to leverage the cloud. While incredibly powerful, AWS was designed for developers to build whatever solutions they can dream up. These developer tools offer great flexibility and granularity, but building and maintaining a solution yourself is rarely a good economic choice. That’s where Signiant Jet comes in.  

Powerfully Simple Automation with Jet 

Jet makes it incredibly easy and cost-effective to automate file movement between any storage locations, whether on-prem or in the cloud. Jet is built on Signiant’s unique hybrid SaaS platform, which connects easily to any of your on-prem storage systems and your S3 buckets. File movement is all orchestrated securely from a simple browser interface in the cloud, but assets always remain in your control in your choice of storage. Once configured, Jet runs in the background, keeping teams informed via a simple dashboard and alerts. 

Jet includes Signiant’s fastest transport technology yet and will take advantage of all available bandwidth. It is capable of blazing multiple Gbps speeds and offers controls to schedule jobs so as to not clog up the network during the workday. Jet is priced and packaged in a simple and cost-effective way for businesses of any size and easy to operate. You can be up and running in a day and know that your valuable work-in-progress or any other data, for that matter, is backed up and protected.     

Schedule a demo today to learn more about how Jet and AWS make it easy to back up your WIP.