A-RAY .tv is celebrating our 20th year of working from our home office in the Georgetown neighborhood of Weston, Connecticut. Back in the early 90′s, working remotely in the television production business was a radical concept. We purchased state-of-the-art equipment and convinced our clients, who included Martha Stewart and New Screen Concepts (production company for ABC, CBS and Lifetime), to try it out. It worked out well and in fact they were thrilled to save the space in their facilities. At the time, we had to either hand deliver or overnight express screening tapes to our clients, which meant a daily rush to make the FedEx drop.
Twenty years later, we are an all-digital production company and services like Vimeo and YouTube have streamlined the screening process. At this point, I can’t imagine doing what we do out of a rented office space. Our postproduction facility runs day and night; we often start an upload or a large compression project just before heading to bed and then check on it first thing in the morning so that our client has a link in their inbox when they get to work.
Back in the 90′s, working from home enabled me to be available when my kids needed me, and I’d often work a few hours in the evening after they’d gone to bed. Last year, our youngest daughter went off to college. Around that time, we also upgraded all of our equipment to HD and as a result, in addition to some empty bedrooms, the space needed for our equipment has shrunk. Our five editing suites used to require towers of video decks, patch bays, external mixing boards, video controllers and multiple large monitors. Now all but our online Symphony suite neatly fit on a desktop.
Even though I no longer need to work from home for the kids, we’ll still continue working from a home office. It’s no longer radical, but it sure keeps the overhead down, and that’s a savings we can pass on to our clients.