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  • Ravi Sharma

Why Program Management is Crucial for OTT Platforms?

Updated: Jan 30, 2023


Why Program Management is Crucial for OTT Platforms?
Program Managers are crucial for OTT Projects and can help in revenue increase, efficiency and effective risk management

Compared to traditional STB projects or IT projects, OTT platforms throw lot more challenges for the management. By design, the OTT industry is expected to churn out newer features to be ahead of competition, increase revenue and visibility in market. Some OTT operators churn out releases every two weeks with feature additions. While it sounds rosy to add newer features, it creates a complicate situation as the project team must deal with technical debt, regression, cross platform harmonisation and scalability.


Let’s talk about the practical issues being faced by OTT platforms.


Cross platform features

Most of the features on OTT platform have link to multiple platforms like, video player, CMS, Billing Solution, Transcoding etc. One quick example is adding a new content partner on an OTT platform. It can impact front-end apps like Android, iOS and Web. It can also impact middleware to handle partner APIs and Billing systems.


Program Manager understands the priority list for these individual platforms and therefore can take informed decision. Program Manager can provide a holistic view to management so that any item related with a fixed delivery date or revenue impacting feature can be prioritized.


Scalability

While scalability sounds more of a tech challenge, but it is also linked to the vision and delivery prowess of the team. Let’s again take an example, an OTT platform wants to support 1M concurrency. If that is the case, then its not just the CDN that gets impacted. The OTT platform will also have to plan for increased capability of Billing system, internal / external APIs, Ad solutions, backend etc.


It is crucial for someone to connect all these dots and plan the scalability so that no specific part is left out. It is often noticed that while majority of the changes are planned for all platforms, but the risk analyses is not done at the program level. For example, the concurrency planned for a certain event is fine but what of the partner also starts generating traffic which was not accounted for. A program manager can assess this internal and external impact and plan efficiently.


Revenue Generation

Yes, you read it right. A visionary Program Manager can take right decisions which can help to increase the revenue. Program Manager has end to end understanding of the commercials, technology, and operations. He / She can assess any potential losses due to overlapping deliveries, events or even partnerships. A proactive Program Manager takes inputs from all the different teams and create a vision document for projects delivery. This vision document can help management take right decisions on removing any existing partner or adding a new one for cost benefit. Program Manager can compare historical performance of a content partner and provide the right analysis to sales team to compare and choose a better partner.


Program Managers play a vital role in all the industries but especially in OTT world.

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