There are many ways to go about producing your own safety video for your team or industrial site. As with any project, you’ll first want to define a few variables:
A scope can be an outline of the content you’ll be presenting. Often times it helps to start with a blank or existing slide deck on a particular safety topic. You may already have this in mind, as usually the production of a safety video comes about from the overuse of an unengaging set of slides. Carefully remove as much as you can to only leave the most important parts. It might be best to run each bit of content against some of your existing safety metrics. Choose topics that are needed the most. Remember, a picture is worth 1,000 words, so a video can say quite a bit without the need for over-explaining.
After you’ve culled your slides, take a moment to write some narration for each slide that guides the audience through your information. Again, you don’t want to be too wordy because images will compel more than words. This won’t be your final draft, but it will give you some perspective as far as a final length and where to make corrections and changes to the way the content is flowing.
Once you’ve completed this task, you’ll use this as your project scope of work. This is the backbone of your project and much be treated as such. Open a meeting with project sponsors and review what you’ve created. Get the inputs of EHS, HSE, safety managers, applicable engineers and other experts to ensure the little things are not looked over. Get opinions of the flow of information and engagment.
Every project has a budget. If you’re not sure where to start or if this is currently open-ended, start with a range. Are you allowed to spend more or less than $10,000? If less, is that number more or less than $1,000? If more than $1,000, is the ceiling closer to $9,999 or say, $5,000? And so on.
Your budget will dictate your resources. In our experience, if you’re able to spend more than $1,000, then you might have enough for professionals to produce and manage your video project for you. If you’re looking at spending less than $1,000, you might want to stick with as many DIY advantages as possible. We’ll talk more about DIY for safety videos in a future post. You can still have parts of it professionally produced with a small budget, such as having it narrated by a pro voice actor or having some animations made.
As with any project, if you don’t set and meet deadlines, it can and will never be completed. Give yourself a reasonable timeline – usually about 6 weeks – depending upon the scope of work. Set deadlines for completion of scope of work, completion of a script, review with project sponsors of the rough draft and delivery of the final product.
Imagine your project timeline is a metaphorical box. After you’ve set the parameters of your box (deadlines), you can fill it with actionable items that will take up time. Scheduling volunteers to be in your video, collecting video and audio, searching for pre-existing media assets that you’ll need, building your own, selecting and hiring a team to build your media, are all time consuming tasks that will need space in the box. Try to think of everything you’ll need to accomplish and how long each will take.
Our final point is method. This is how you will go about completing the project.
If you’re going with a professional video production team, check out our blog post on selecting the right team. If you’re going to be hiring a crew to film during a dangerous machinery procedure or in a shop or field environment, make sure the camera unit and director (or anyone else they will be allowing on your set) is well-versed in being in that kind of environment and knows to respect their surroundings. You are, after all, producing a safety video. Ask if the crew will have OSHA training or will at least be briefed before shooting. Also get a good idea of how well they understand industrial safety in general. Safety is a meticulous and sometimes dry subject. If the post production team is completely lost on the topic, be prepared for many corrections and revisions. Make sure they won’t resell or own the copyrights to any propriety processes or tools you may be asking them to film or create animations. More importantly, make sure they won’t post, show, or share any of your proprietary video content unless authorized once the project is over.
If you’re shifting more towards the DIY route, there are a wealth of tools and information on producing your own films. You’ll just need to customize these tools a bit to fit your safety content. Using the camera on your phone, a company computer and an Internet connection, you can easily embark on creating your own set of safety videos.
If you liked this post, let us know in the comments or share it and we’ll go more in-depth on this topic in future blog posts.