The old saying is that a picture is worth a thousand words. Now consider that video can pack 30 images per second. That’s a lot of image snagging conservation!
I do a fair amount of platform and software training projects. I am also of the school that believes that the best way to learn a computer-based job task is in the same context, on a computer.
Screencasts allow me to not only teach new hires on my team how to do team procedures, but allows us to simultaneously train existing staff on new procedures with little time away from their work, and a chance to replay the training when the time is right for them.
They also give me a chance to work with subject matter experts in a capacity that makes them the star of the end product. If I have a trainer who is doing a bang-up job in the classroom and the students are constantly asking where they can get more information after class is over, then we have their request fulfilled! This leads to better rapport with my stakeholders, trainers and subject matter experts and leaves them eager to help me again. SME rapport – priceless!
I also find that updating a screencast is so much faster than digging through mountains of PowerPoint slides with dated screen shots that need to be managed and updated at an alarming rate, not to mention the time it takes for an end-user to digest mountains of fact-based course contents.
Having said that, there are many times I will use screen shots for a quick teaching moment. These usually are saved for embedding in emails for a very short process or doing some fast tech support. So TechSmith if you are reading this I wont be giving up Snagit anytime soon, and thank you for including video capture in your base tool. Kudos!