A KTP is a strategic innovation project delivered as a three-way partnership between a business, a university (in the form of academic knowledge and facilities) and a full-time employee, known as a KTP Associate, often a graduate, who works in the business while accessing support from the university. The project costs are partially funded by the government, through Innovate UK, and the North of Scotland KTP Centre provides guidance and administrative support for the lifetime of the project, starting with the application process and ending with the final ‘write-up’ of the project outcomes. KTPs have been called a hidden gem because many companies could benefit from innovations catalysed by working with a university, but they do not realise that there is a dedicated scheme to enable them to do that.
The North of Scotland KTP Centre is a joint venture between the University of Aberdeen and Robert Gordon University; it also provides support to the University of the Highlands and Islands, the James Hutton Institute, Abertay University and the University of Dundee. Following a recent rebrand, and with many of their award-winning projects about to reach completion, the Centre commissioned Bulletin to create a series of high-quality case study videos, funded by Innovate UK’s KTP capacity building programme. These videos were designed to showcase projects across a range of different business sectors by communicating impact of the KTP process and promote the work of the Centre in a clear and understandable way. Their objective was to encourage more businesses to consider whether they could benefit from a KTP.
To be successful the videos needed to tell a story, so the first stage of the project was to craft the narrative. The KTPs had tackled complex technical challenges and delivered outcomes ranging from new products and processes to culture change within the business. The resulting stories were multifaceted and they needed to be communicated in a clear and engaging way that did not leave the viewer overwhelmed. We used this work to define the questions to be asked in the interviews for the videos.
The KTPs delivered solutions in fields such as data science in potato breeding, safety protocols in vertical farming, energy efficiency during beer brewing, AI in offshore oil and gas maintenance and innovations in medical imaging for gut surgery. As a result, each company, and their project, had a different ‘personality’. To ensure the videos sounded authentic we decided to interview contributors from all three parts of each project where possible – a representative from the business, the KTP Associate who had carried out the work and an academic researcher from the university.
To reduce the total cost of the videos, we worked closely with videographers based in Aberdeen and the Southwest of England, the bases for the profiled companies. These local partners set up the shots, the KTP team liaised with the interviewees and Bulletin conducted the interviews remotely via Teams. With people now used to holding virtual meetings, the remote interviews worked well because the interviewees were more relaxed talking to the interviewer on the other side of a computer screen.
In addition to filming the interviews using a two-camera set-up, the videographers also gathered b-roll footage (e.g. establishing shots) of the locations, service and products.
Liaising with the North of Scotland KTP Centre on the day, we ensured that the answers to the questions had covered all the points they wanted to get across in the video. We also filmed additional content, discussing the support package provided by the Centre and the benefits that the KTP delivered to the Associate and the academics. This footage was used to create an additional video toraise the profile of KTP as an exciting career option for graduates.
Editing and distribution
Once all the interviews had been filmed, we edited them together to tell the story. Often different people had answered the same question in different ways, so we were able to choose which version to use and create a video with plenty of variety to ensure that the viewer remained engaged. We also added titles, music, images, b-roll footage and an animated video detailing what a KTP is, which had been created by the Centre.
The North of Scotland KTP Centre reviewed an early draft of the videos and final sign-off at the end of the process came from the Centre, partner University and company featured in the video. The Centre then hosted the videos on their YouTube channel where they are gathering hundreds of views and promoted them on their LinkedIn page. We also provided Instagram clips for each video to boost the film’s reach. The case studies will also be embedded on the Centre’s new website, launching soon.
“As a KTP specialist, I know what a positive impact they can have for all members of the partnership. But they are complicated to communicate to new audiences, so it was great to work with the team at Bulletin because they understood the scheme in detail and recognised how exciting the innovations delivered by the projects were. This was a new process for us and Chris and Laura’s excellent support and communication ensured that we not only ended up with a series of videos that exceeded our expectations, but also a fun experience. Bulletin pulled everything together into an engaging story and made the process as simple as possible. I’m thrilled with the videos, as are the partners they feature, and would definitely recommend Bulletin’s services.”Emma Craig, KTP Projects Coordinator