SDS Symphony’s Programming Module Updated for new CRTC TV logging requirements

SDS, the leading Canadian supplier of Broadcast software in the Canadian marketplace, continues to expand its software to meet and exceed the needs of their Canadian clients.

The Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunication Commission (CRTC) has revised how Canadian Television Stations are to submit their monthly program logs. Licensees are required to submit, in a form acceptable to the Commission, a machine readable record of programming, which is collectively known as a program log.

“The CRTC changes were effective as of September 1, 2018”, said Jim Anderson, COO of SDS “We modified SDS Symphony’s Programming module to ensure that the changes required by the CRTC would not result in extra hours of work for our users. If every TV program started as of September 1st, the changes would have been simple. However most programs existed prior to September 1, so we had to ensure that our users could resubmit earlier logs under the previous set of rules without having to extra work. Prior to joining SDS, as a broadcaster I submitted program logs to the CRTC so I understand their complexity and the importance of ensuring that they are correct.”

The changes to SDS Symphony didn’t end with simply updating the rules. SDS designed a beautiful new software interface for the users that interactively displays each and every program code logging error. The module also keeps track of the users’ Conditions of License to ensure that there are no surprises when the Licensee appears before the Commission.

SDS Symphony is a uniquely unified suite of enterprise software for Radio, TV, and Internet Broadcasters. Built atop a centralized database, SDS Symphony delivers Clarity, Control, and Results by focusing on efficiency and giving all departments instant, easy access to information across all markets, stations, and media properties.

Established in 1993, SDS is a leading North American provider of broadcast management software, specializing in the development of a proven, unified approach to media management. With more than 500 television, radio and digital station clients representing a billion dollars in advertising revenue, SDS is independent of broadcaster ownership and remains a responsive, agile, and customer-focused company.

SDS Introduces SDS Creative

Toronto, Ontario – September 2017 –Specialty Data Systems (SDS) today announced the release of SDS Creative, an advanced media production module. SDS Creative joins the existing components of SDS Symphony: SDS Sales, SDS Traffic, SDS CRM, SDS Programming, SDS Reports, and SDS A/R, in providing media companies with a complete media management system.

SDS Creative works across radio, television, and digital platforms in any environment, from large multi-market broadcast groups to locally-operated stations. As a unified component of SDS Symphony, SDS Creative is uniquely able to integrate the commercial production process with other media departments including Traffic, Sales, and Management. SDS Creative is fully scalable, with customized workflows and multi-tiered security.

“SDS Creative is the latest offering in SDS’s mission to anticipate and deliver the most powerful tools possible. Based largely on input from our current and prospective client base, SDS Creative was built to be dynamic enough to suit any media environment,” said Dave Cole, President of SDS. “SDS Creative closes the loop, fully integrating the activities of production personnel with their colleagues in Traffic, Sales, and Management.”

With SDS Creative, everyone is on the same page, eliminating the need for 3rd party solutions. Deadlines are flagged and tasks are managed for everyone: writers, producers, talent, traffic, and sales. Electronic approval routing allows creative to get to air faster, while automated email notifications and transparent workflow tracking encourages departmental accountability. SDS Creative features a rich script editor and every revision of a script is stored for a truly paper-less experience.

SDS Symphony is a uniquely unified suite of enterprise software for Radio, TV, and Internet Broadcasters. Built around a centralized database, SDS Symphony delivers Clarity, Control, and Results by focussing on efficiency and giving all departments instant, easy access to information across markets, stations, and media properties. Established in 1993, SDS is a leading North American provider of broadcast management software, specializing in the development of a proven, unified approach to media management. With more than 500 television, radio and digital station clients representing a billion dollars in advertising revenues, SDS is independent of broadcaster ownership and remains a responsive, agile, and customer-focused company.

SDS Sales Introduces Seamless, Real-Time Access to Nielsen Respondent-Level Data for Radio

Toronto, Ontario – January 2017 – Specialty Data Systems (SDS) announced the release of SDS Sales’ fully integrated access to Nielsen respondent-level data. SDS Sales now has a direct link to the Nielsen data engine, enabling real-time updating of sales proposals and bookings with Nielsen audience data.

Now, when building an order in SDS Sales, line-level edits directly query the Nielsen data to automatically update rating, audience, CPM, CPP, and reach/frequency numbers. As days and hours are customized and spot times are adjusted, the audience data reflects these revisions in real-time. The introduction of this feature establishes SDS Sales as a one-stop solution for building pitches, estimating audience reach, and entering buys, eliminating the need for multiple systems or redundant data entry.

Harnessing the power of Nielsen’s data engine is yet another example of SDS’s dedication to help clients save time and make more money by maximizing every spot and every dollar. “SDS strives to consistently deliver the tools broadcasters need to stay one step ahead in today’s increasingly competitive marketplace. We are committed to continuously enhancing our products with time-saving features to optimize the user experience,” said Dave Cole, SDS President. “SDS’s integration with Nielsen speaks directly to our ongoing commitment to providing effective, powerful business software to our clients.”

Established in 1993, SDS is a leading North American provider of broadcast management software, specializing in the development of a proven, unified approach to media management. SDS Symphony includes SDS Sales, SDS Traffic, SDS CRM, SDS Creative, SDS Programming, SDS Reports, and SDS A/R, all thoughtfully designed to work together seamlessly across your entire enterprise. With more than 500 television, radio and digital station clients representing a billion dollars in advertising revenues, SDS is independent of broadcaster ownership and remains a responsive, agile, and customer-focused company. For more information, visit www.sds.ca

Group Attraction Radio Inc. partners with SDS

Toronto, Ontario – April 11, 2016 – Centralized radio station operations was what leading Canadian broadcaster Group Attraction Radio, was looking for to increase the efficiency of its operations. The Quebec based company found the solution in an innovative, unified broadcast management system provided by Specialty Data Systems (SDS).

Group Attraction Radio has installed SDS’s flagship broadcast management software, SDS Symphony, at all of its radio stations. The software centralizes information, across all departments and all markets.

“We had been working in a semi-manual system previously which made it very difficult to work efficiently”, explained Marc Thibault, Director of Finances, Radio Division. “Redundancy of data entry and effort was commonplace, so we needed a better way.” Thibault said.

SDS Symphony provides broadcasters with the ability to instantaneously share information between various markets, stations and departments – from CRM, sales, traffic and programming to operations and accounting – eliminating the need for data re-entry and cross-verification.

“Now with Group Attraction joining SDS, over 425 stations across North. America have partnered with SDS and we are proud to have the team from Group Attraction as a customer. With our bilingual support team, the users at Group Attraction have been able to learn SDS in their language. This is another commitment that SDS has to our partners in French Canada. I am confident that our SDS Symphony product will yield better clarity and control of their business,” said Dave Cole, President of SDS, explaining that the result is a more efficient and streamlined operation.

“Now, with SDS, we have streamlined administration, simple and efficient enterprise reporting and rapid process improvement,” Thibault said.

Established in 1993, SDS is a leading North American provider of broadcast management software, specializing in the development of a proven, unified approach to broadcast sales, traffic, programming, operations and accounting. A mid-sized company with more than 425 television and radio station clients representing a billion dollars in advertising revenues, SDS is independent of broadcaster ownership and remains an agile and customer-focused company. For more information, visit www.sds.ca.

2015 was a year of Growth for SDS Symphony

Toronto, Ontario – April 18, 2016 – Specialty Data Systems (SDS) Inc., a leading North American provider of innovative broadcast management software, continues to extend its market presence with the announcement of additional station launches in both television and radio throughout North America

“I’m pleased to announce the following additions to the SDS family,” said Dave Cole, president of Toronto, Ont.-based SDS, adding that the company is on target to increase its installed base to more than 500 radio and television stations across North America by fourth quarter 2016.

The new accounts include:
Corus Entertainment Inc. (3 stations) and the launch of Disney, Disney XD, and La Chaine Disney in November 2015. Corus Entertainment has been using SDS since 1993. Proving that SDS understands the Canadian marketplace better than anyone else.

Accessible Media Inc. and the launch of AMI-Tele in January 2015 in Quebec. Launch in January 2015, AMI serves more than five million Canadians who are blind, partially sighted, deaf, hard of hearing, mobility or print restricted. AMI has been part of the SDS family since 2008.

Roundhouse Radio launched in January 2015. After reviewing all the choices available in the marketplace, Roundhouse Radio selected SDS Symphony to assist in reaching its mandate of hyperlocal content and urban presence.

American General Media (6 stations), Summit Media LLC (8 stations), Results Radio (2), Harvard Broadcastings (2) also expanded with ease” Cole noted. “The process is not intrusive to the users at all and stations can be added and launched within a matter of weeks with no additional costs!”

In addition to station launches, SDS also has expanded its VOD offering to Canadian television clients. “As the BDU offer more options to the viewer, this has required additional features within the VOD spectrum, often at a moment’s notice. We have been able to deliver these modifications to our clients with ease” said Sarah Smithies, SDS’s Project Director. “That’s why they chose SDS. We have been there for them every step of the way. From changes in the reporting system at the CRTC to the Numeris Program Names Collection Solution. We add these features at no charge to the system so our clients are not using Excel or manual reports.”

“Over the past year, SDS has been working on a new feature we call SDS IM or Inventory Management,” commented Jim Anderson, COO of SDS. “As the industry changes, so too does our software and the ability to see as much or little information as the user demands. SDS IM allows them to do that. It allows them to see as far into the future as they dare to look and manage the inventory as they want.”

Sherri Clark, the Corporate Traffic Director from Summit Media says this about SDS IM. “I’m able to handle the logs for 15 stations across the country from wherever I am. I travel from site to site, we have 6 in total, and everyone thinks I’m sitting in their location doing the logs, moving spots, etc. I couldn’t live without it!”

Equipped with a common database to integrate sales, traffic, programming, finance and operations data, SDS Symphony gives broadcasters the ability to instantaneously share information between stations and across departments, regardless of location. Its automated approach eliminates the need for re-entry and cross-verification of data, and formats information according to specific user needs, whether they’re programming airtime, booking orders, scheduling promos or producing sales and commission reports.

About Specialty Data Systems
SDS, established in 1993, is a leading North American provider of broadcast management software. More than 450 television and radio station clients have unified sales, traffic, programming, operations and accounting with the SDS Symphony suite of products. It is independent of broadcaster ownership. For more information, visit www.sds.ca .

SDS Sales Introduces Fully Integrated, Real-Time Access to Numeris Diary and PPM Level Data for Radio

Toronto, Ontario – November 2015 –Specialty Data Systems (SDS) announced today the release of SDS Sales’ fully integrated access to Numeris audience data in Canada. The latest version of SDS Sales taps directly in to the Numeris data engine to dynamically update sales proposals and bookings with Numeris audience data.

Now, when building an order in SDS Sales, line-level edits directly query the Numeris data to automatically update rating, audience, CPM, CPP, and reach/frequency numbers. As hours and days are narrowed and spot times are adjusted, the audience data reflects the changes in real-time. This version of SDS Sales also includes a comprehensive and fully customizable Ranker, which allows the inclusion of spill markets, the creation of station groupings, and dynamic printing options. The introduction of these features makes SDS Sales a one-stop solution for building pitches, estimating audience reach, and entering buys, eliminating redundant data-entry and the need for multiple systems. Harnessing the power of Numeris’ data engine is yet another example of SDS’s dedication to help clients save time and make more money by maximizing every spot and every dollar.

“SDS is committed to continuously enhancing our products with time-saving features to streamline the user experience. We strive to constantly deliver the tools broadcasters need to stay one step ahead in today’s increasingly competitive marketplace,” says Dave Cole, SDS President. “SDS’s decision to integrate the power of the Numeris data engine speaks directly to our commitment to providing effective, powerful business software to our clients.”

Established in 1993, SDS is a leading North American provider of broadcast management software, specializing in the development of a proven, unified approach to broadcast sales, traffic, programming, operations and accounting. A mid-sized company with more than 400 television and radio station clients representing a billion dollars in advertising revenues, SDS is independent of broadcaster ownership and remains an agile and customer-focused company. For more information, visit www.sds.ca. 

SDS unveils new Mobile-friendly website

Specialty Data Systems (SDS) unveils new website

PrintToronto, Ontario – January 28, 2014 –Specialty Data Systems (SDS) announced today the release of its new mobile-friendly website, featuring a more contemporary design and user-friendly menus that allow visitors to easily navigate through each section. The updated pages at www.sds.ca contain the latest information on the SDS Symphony system, the company, team members, product news and recent press releases.

Many new enhancements have also been made to improve the user-experience for all broadcasters; radio, TV and internet.  The site details the many advantages of partnering with SDS to save time and make more money by maximizing every spot and every dollar with the SDS Symphony system.

The mobile version of www.sds.ca resizes to each user’s screen, regardless of the device, to deliver the same user-experience as a Web browser on a PC.

“SDS is committed to expanding our market share with an optimized end-to-end approach of doing business and a second-to-none dedication to our customers. We strive to constantly deliver the tools broadcasters need to stay competitive in today’s changing marketplace,” says Dave Cole, SDS President. “Our newly enhanced website is part of our commitment to do just that.”

Established in 1993, SDS is a leading North American provider of broadcast management software, specializing in the development of a proven, unified approach to broadcast sales, traffic, programming, operations and accounting. A mid-sized company with more than 400 television and radio station clients representing a billion dollars in advertising revenues, SDS is independent of broadcaster ownership and remains an agile and customer-focused company. For more information, visit www.sds.ca. 

Summit Media chooses SDS

For Immediate Release

Summit Media Chooses SDS Broadcast Management System to Unify its 23 U.S. Radio Stations

Toronto, Ontario – January 27, 2014 – One-stop access to all the data at each of its radio stations was what leading U.S. broadcaster Summit Media, LLC  was looking for to increase the efficiency of its operations. The Birmingham, Alabama-based company found the solution in an innovative, unified broadcast management system provided by Specialty Data Systems (SDS).

Summit Media has announced that it has installed SDS’s flagship broadcast management software, SDS Symphony, at all 23 of its radio stations, based in Alabama, Virginia, S. Carolina, Hawaii and Kentucky. The software centralizes information, across all departments, in real time.

“The SDS system completely eliminates the information silos that are so prevalent in radio,” said Darryl Grondines, CFO of Summit Media, explaining that the company previously had separate databases for each of its stations and each market it services. “Now, with SDS, all our stations are in a common database which enables simple and efficient enterprise reporting, rapid process improvement and streamlined administration, which will play a vital role in the growth and development of our company.”

“We wear a lot of different hats around here and we needed a software vendor that would help us work smarter, not harder”, Grondines explained. “SDS is a long-time, privately-owned company that very much resembles our own, so cultural fit played a large role in our partnering decision.”

SDS Symphony provides broadcasters with the ability to instantaneously share information between various markets, stations and departments – from CRM, sales, traffic and programming to operations and accounting – eliminating the need for data re-entry and cross-verification.

“Now with over 400 stations across N. America partnered with SDS Symphony, information is always up-to-date and broadcasters have better clarity and control of their business,” said Dave Cole, President of SDS, explaining that the result is a more efficient and streamlined operation. “The technology’s two-way flow of data allows for faster implementation, and reduces redundancies and costs, enabling the system to grow and adapt as broadcasters grow and the market evolves.”

Established in 1993, SDS is a leading North American provider of broadcast management software, specializing in the development of a proven, unified approach to broadcast sales, traffic, programming, operations and accounting. A mid-sized company with more than 400 television and radio station clients representing a billion dollars in advertising revenues, SDS is independent of broadcaster ownership and remains an agile and customer-focused company. For more information, visit www.sds.ca.

First-of-its-kind CRM Solution Targets Unique World of Broadcasting

Specialty Data Systems (SDS) Inc., a leading North American provider of broadcast management software and creator of SDS Symphony, has launched a first-of-its-kind customer relationship management (CRM) solution for broadcasters. Called SDS CRM, the product differs from other commercially-available CRM products by zeroing in on the unique challenges of broadcasters and arming them with real-time access to the critical information they need to make better decisions, increase sales, manage inventory and maximize revenue.

“SDS CRM resulted directly from client feedback,” said Dave Cole, President of Toronto-based SDS, noting that the decision to develop a custom vertical solution was achieved following an extensive market review of other CRM offerings on the market  combined with a comprehensive survey of customer needs.

“We’re delivering an end-to-end software solution that puts real-time customer information into the hands of broadcasters – literally via email, PC or mobile device – helping them to manage the everyday business of broadcasting, from generating sales leads to managing active accounts,” he said.

Unlike standalone CRM systems that are often fragmented, SDS CRM provides a comprehensive and unified view of customer information that is accurate and up-to-date. It takes account management to the next level by supplying continuously updated alerts and reports on everything from revenue, accounts receivable, inventory and pacing, to budget, key performance indicators  and sales projections.

Whereas other CRM products rely on third-party reporting software or manual consolidation of data from disparate markets and silos of information, SDS CRM delivers a consolidated view of critical reports, alerts, and performance indicators from across an entire organization. This is particularly important for broadcasters as they continue to move towards more centralized operations as a way to do more with less, Cole explained.

“SDS CRM keeps me on track,” said Mike Cheney, Local Sales Manager at Bend, Oregon-based Horizon Broadcasting. “It brings all of my account information right to my phone so that it’s available whenever I need it.”

Trila Bumstead, CEO at Seattle, Washington-based Ohana Media, added that: “Using the built-in performance alert feature, I get real-time notification of potential problems so that I can ‘course correct’ while I still have time to do something about it.”

SDS CRM is a fully unified component of SDS Symphony, the company’s flagship product for automating routine broadcast-related tasks such as airtime programming, sales and traffic workflow, order booking, promo scheduling and credit rule enforcement.  Among the new component’s functionality and features are: CRM dashboard, an overview of operational information including access to drill-down reports; CRM Alerts, a feature that sends automatic notification whenever pre-determined conditions are met, such as missing copy, expiring contracts or past-due receivables; CRM Account Brief, a summary of client information to support sales calls; and CRM Push Reports, an automatic way to receive custom reports. All features are customizable.

Operating on Microsoft Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7 and Microsoft SQL Server, SDS CRM is included as part of the unified SDS Symphony suite at no cost.