To maintain a competitive advantage these days, employers “can no longer rely on the traditional talent supply chain,” say the brains behind C2 Montreal, a three-day immersive event which brings together commerce and creativity to explore trends, opportunities, disruptions and major shifts on the horizon.

On May 26, 2017, I caught up with Guillaume Renaud. As co-founder of Edge Dimension, a  Montreal-based studio that specializes in realistic 3-D renderings and virtual reality, Renaud knows a thing or two about managing a global, virtual workforce.

Question: You’re in an industry that is rapidly evolving. What’s your approach to hiring?

Answer: We’re a next-generation business model. Half of our company is based in Montreal. There’s great artistic talent created right here in this city. But we’re also lucky to work with virtual talent. In 3-D, it’s all about creating and sharing files, so we have the chance to work with the best talent all around the world. This capability makes us very flexible because we can deliver high quality in a very short time. We also have access to talent all around the world so we can make big things happen in a short amount of time.

Q: Would this ‘next generation’ talent supply chain have been possible ten years ago? 

A: Probably not. The Internet wouldn’t have been fast enough and there wouldn’t have been enough platforms to connect. We have a huge database for talent from all around the world and the tools to work with them in an efficient way. This wouldn’t have been possible ten years ago. There are so many platforms to now to help people work together. Even if it’s a pretty complicated project, we can do it.

Q: What’s the biggest frustration of working with talent from around the world?

A: Sometimes communicating can be difficult, especially when we’re not all speaking the same language. We’re also operating in different time zones, which means we have to make ourselves available at all hours of the day. That’s the difficult part. But the payoff is that we can do things much quicker because if we work during the day then we can pack the files and send them to another artist on the other side of the planet and they’re just going to get things. We’re pretty much a 24-hour studio and that gives us a competitive advantage. Technology has made this possible.

Katherine Scarrow is the digital strategist for Globe Edge Content Studio. You can reach her @scarrowk

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