What evidence can you share that demonstrates the impact of the engagement?
In the first year of this project, we got government money, and in the second year, because the first year was so successful, I was able to go to my own local authority and get funding for a second year since there wasn’t continuous funding from the government.
It actually got bigger because we had 12 schools involved in the first year, and 18 schools involved this year. I think part of that was the quality of those videos that Shoot You made. It is slightly in limbo at the moment, but we are supposed to start a third year in September.
What is hard about the school sector is that it isn’t like walking into a company. You have to be mindful of people having appropriate permission to be in schools and so on and so forth. The team was always very respectful of that and understood that we had to make sure they had the appropriate clearances to be filming in schools.
Everyone involved found the engagement very enjoyable. It really opened up another way of demonstrating some of the work we have been doing. We have submitted a couple of reports beyond our organization.
The University of London in Roehampton is doing research and they have been very interested in the project. We have written for a couple of national magazines about the impact of the project.
Although it wasn’t directly referencing Shoot You, we obviously signposted that into our website where all that information would have been housed and you can see the videos there. It just gave an edge to it that we wouldn’t have had otherwise without the quality of the videos.
We would’ve had data, but it wouldn’t have quite captured the voice in the same way that the videos do. One of the biggest impacts was when we had a conference in May 2019 which would have been a year after we did the first filming with them.
It was a conference attended by about 170 delegates. We hadn’t filmed that conference before, so it was a different branch at Achieving for Children that hired Shoot You to do that and they captured that day in a way that we wouldn’t have been able to otherwise.
How did Shoot You Video & Animation Production perform from a project management standpoint?
We had regular contact throughout the project. We went to their offices 3–4 times as well just to check-in and we had email and phone contact during all of that as well. Sometimes when things were in production, the team still shared them via Vimeo to demonstrate the progress.
In a way, they just understood where we were coming from at the start. They have done a lot of work in banking and other fields and this was quite a different field for them to get involved in. From the get-go they understood it and they were also able to roll with the punches.
It was a sector they didn’t know, so I was surprised by the attention they were willing to give us. Shoot You was really adaptable at the start and really keen to get involved and to listen. At the start, they were looking to do a bit more animation, but the cost was more than we could afford. So, they thought of another way of doing it.
We have our own internal media department that wanted to have a look at the videos. There wasn’t so much work that needed to be redone to any great degree, but Shoot You was always happy to go back if we had noticed something that wasn’t quite clear.
What did you find most impressive about them?
Right from the start, even though they are not education-focused in any way, what shocked me about Quint and other teammates was their willingness and adaptability. No matter who we worked with in terms of the team, it was the same quality of work, the same interaction, and the same level of understanding of what we were trying to do.
I never felt like we were bothering them when we went back to them for edits. During the lifetime of the project, we added another element and added on a filming day, but it wasn’t a problem. They were pretty flexible. They were equally enthusiastic and professional.
Are there any areas they could improve?
No, I really can’t think of anything off the top of my head. The team got everything right in terms of our message and the look and feel of it. The quality was fantastic.
Do you have any advice for potential customers?
Open and honest conversations and relationships were key from the start. We got them to understand the industry even if it wasn’t their focus so that they could be familiar with what we were trying to do.
We weren’t afraid to push back if we felt it wasn’t quite going where we wanted it to. They are a very flexible company, and they were very happy to meet us in the middle as well.