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Whiteboard Animation and HR Training

Posted by mocapnyc

The issue with HR Training Videos - Representing the Employee

If you are reading this blog then you are probably frustrated with HR Training and visual media. Well, you've come to the right place! We have made many of these videos for companies like Trader Joe's, Clinique, BASF, and GCI.


When it comes to various forms of company training there are often a lot of stake holders. Art, by its nature, has a personal flare. But if there are too many cooks in the kitchen, a project can be pulled in many different directions and originality can be lost. Multiple approvals also hold up schedules, add to budget, and even kill projects. It is easy to give up hope.

Two main choices: Film and Animation

The first choice to make is between filming the video or animating the video. The first thing to note is the cost for Film and Animation is relatively the same. Here is a simple list of the pros and cons. 

Film Pros: - Spokesperson - Real-Life Scenarios and scenes - Easier for non-creatives to conceive

Film Cons: - Film is not new - Equipment and crew - Hiring and scheduling talent - Ethnicities may not like they’re representative  - Not flexible for changes

Animation Pros: - Animation is new and cheaper than ever - Options are endless - No need to cast actors (just voice-over talent) - Get started quickly - Revisions are flexibile.

Animation Cons: - Options are endless. - Hard for non-creatives to conceive

We break down the differences between these two in a blog called “How to choose between animation and video”

Animation - Artistically cutting edge AND ready for committees

We recommend using animation when it comes to company training. Because animation is newer and cheaper than ever. When it comes to committee revisions and tweeking the project, it requires the lowest cost. Filming employees has existed for decades. Thanks to advancing technology, illustration, animation, and special effects can be created on a budget and in many ways is cheaper than using film or photography.

Style-Choices for drawing employees

In moving forward with animation the question of how to represent employees visually is still an issue. Diversity and political correctness is often a top priority. Here are the choices in how to represent the employee.

1) Exaggerated - Political Cartoon

When people think of cartoons the first thing that pops in the mind are vintage Disney films or Looney Toon animations. These characters are intended to be over-the-top exaggerations of real-life. The exaggeration cranks up the drama and entertainment for the viewer. Saying to the viewer “laugh at me” and “isn’t this ridiculous.”

Plus: Entertaining and Funny

Minus: Can be offensive and rude (not politically correct)

Questions: Do you want to bring the comedy? Do you want to elicit a response and you're not afraid to offend? Then this style is right for you.

2) Exaggerated - Stylized

Many cartoons today are stylized, that is a lot of attention has been paid to detail. This style is similar to the first the only difference is the charatcer has been rendered with a serious tone. These characters are intended to be an exaggeration of real-life for dramatic pruposes. The exaggeration turns up the emotion for the viewer. Like puppets or modern paintings, they touch a viewers subconscious taking them to an emotional place.

Plus: Dramatic and Emotional

Minus: Can draw attention to the art instead of the message.

Questions: Do you want to stir emotions? Do you and your audience appreciate art? Then this style is right for you.

3) Safe-Cartoon

Safe-cartoon takes the exaggeration out of the character doing just what it says. It is a safe bet. This style is perfect for most corporate animations because it does not offend nor does it distract from the message. It is not the most entertaining choice however the primary aim of most companies is the company message. After all, if their aim was to entertain then they would be in the entertainment business.

Plus: Interesting

Minus: A safe simple choice

Questions: Does your project have a lot of decision makers? Is your audience easily offended? Is your message’s focus on a concept rather than characters? Then this style is right for you.

4) Comicbook / Realistic-Stylized

Like Safe-cartoon, Realistic-Stylized is also a safe bet. The only difference is this style is a bit more like real-life.

Plus: Classy and Real

Minus: A simple choice

Questions: Does your project have a lot of decision makers? Is your message about real human characters? If so, then this style is right for you.

5) Realistic / Graphic Novel

Realism is also a safe bet and this style is as close to real-life as you can get without filming someone. Hence the question… why not just film it? Going with realism lends more art to the animation. The only drawback is it can drain a budget if people get caught up in tweeking details. Details such as desk items, fashion, hair, cellphone types, etc.

Plus: Classic and very real

Minus: Can hurt a budget due to details.

Questions: Is your project about real-life situations and real human characters? Can the project avoid getting caught up in details? Then this style is right for you.

6) Infographics and Diagrams - good for concepts

Sometimes a concept is the focus of the message. If an issue affects hundred or thousands of people it’s best to address employees conceptually rather than as specific individuals. In this instance, it’s best to use a style of animation called an infographic. Infographics have been popular since 2000. This style of animation uses plain figures of employees instead of a character. Similarly concepts like timelines, cycles, and fields or areas are often best explained using a diagram that rarely if ever includes an image of the employee.

As stated above, animation is newer, cheaper than ever. And when it comes to committee revisions and tweeking the project, it requires the lowest cost. If you have any other questions feel free to contact us at whiteboardanimation@gmail.com or call 646-801-3496

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