Our inside knowledge of how agency creative and production departments function – and what creatives need in an in-house facility to realize their visions and concepts – played a key role in our work for the New York flagship office of Havas. We asked Phil Silvestri to tell us why he chose us to help the agency realize this ambitious project.
We asked Armory to design, budget and build an in-house video production facility for our new 300,000 square foot space in New York. The goal was to satisfy our desire to have our own facility, something that could function as an in house production play land, something that we would own but that would also offer us some creative magic.
We chose Armory was chosen because they knew the mechanics of how production and post production worked. They looked at how the agency was spending money with its vendors, and based on that overview, among other things, were able to put together a proposal to build the new facility, which we’ve dubbed Sixth Sense. Its’ goal is to not only serve our creative needs, but recapture current costs as revenue and save clients money, too.
Armory understood the need to get creative buy-in for Sixth Sense from the start. They realized that our creative people will want to work there if the talent is there. And while we’re not compelling people to use the facility, we feel they’ll want to work there because they’ll love working there.
When you work on the outside, someone’s always asking you, ‘Can I have P.O. for that,’ anytime you want to do something.” That can be an obstacle to the ideation and experimentation process. Access to our new in-house facility will allow creative people to create and have ideas, and ideas are what we have to sell.
One thing that grew out of Armory’s work on Sixth Sense was that they helped us link ideas together by designing a global asset management system that would give people at the agency access to all of their work. There was no more, ‘Where do we find this?’ Locating things at an agency this size is a huge process, and there’s not always a clear path to where they are.
The new asset management system that Armory developed for us will allow staffers to locate things in a seamless way, and will be easy to use. Trying to find things at an agency is like searching through a spider web of information that can be hard to navigate, and it’s a big deal for an agency to be fluid when it comes to this.
Helping us create this system has had a broad impact, as it crosses over to working with creative, with finance, with IT and even with new business. It’s all intertwined and converging. It was a massive undertaking to get a bird’s eye view of all this and to get a handle on it. And in this regard Armory’s been a big help. From my point of view, what they’ve done is look beyond the surface. It’s like an iceberg; underneath it’s deep and complicated. When you start to examine it, the stuff under the water line is very complex. And that’s what these guys are good at.
In terms of Armory’s ability to help agencies understand and improve their processes and workflow, that’s a complicated task, but they know their stuff, they’re very good at it. They’ve been a tremendous help to me, and the agency is going to value what they’ve done.